'Resilient' hospitality students take out national culinary awards

Bishop Tyrrell Anglican College recently had cause to celebrate when two of their Alumni Isaac Battrick and Hannah Gunton proceeded to the semi-finals of a national culinary competition for excellence in kitchen operations with Isaac Battrick taking out the final round declared the winner of the award out of hundreds of nominations.

The Australian Institute of Technical Chefs shortlisted two of Bishop Tyrrell's 2020 graduates as part of their search for future leaders of the hospitality industry.

Hannah and Isaac had participated in the VET (Vocational Education and Training) course offerings at Bishop Tyrrell as part of their HSC, studying Hospitality and Certificate II in Kitchen Operations at the school's state-of-the-art hospitality facilities under the direction of Bishop Tyrrell's Head of TAS (Technological and Applied Studies) and VET Ms. Jenny Gurr.

Both have gone on to apprenticeships in the industry, with Hannah working at Coal River & Co in Cooks Hill and Isaac at The George Tavern, Greenhills.
Chef George Hill from the National Awards of Excellence, along with a panel of experts commended Isaac in their announcements for demonstrating an ongoing passion for the hospitality industry and striving to achieve.
"Isaac's nomination to the top was against strong contenders in each round of the competition, and he showed substantial capability and resilience in his interviews, especially given the difficult times he and all of us in the hospitality industry have been faced with over the last 18 months," said Chef Hill.

Ms. Jenny Gurr had nominated both students and was very excited when Isaac took out the national award.
"Well done for being the winner, you certainly are the 'Best of the Best' not only in your profession but also as a fantastic role model in our community and ambassador of the school … you're on the road to professional success and surrounded by mentors at The George Tavern Greenhills who are providing wonderful support for you," said Ms. Gurr.

Isaac, who is now studying a Certificate III in Commercial Cookery at Hamilton TAFE, credits Ms. Gurr for nurturing inspiration for hospitality. "Ms. Gurr was inspirational," said Isaac. "She made the subject so engaging; it really enhanced our learning. And she had the faith in us to nominate us for the competition. I was shocked and surprised when I won. It just goes to show that if you work hard at something, you can achieve good things."

Isaac is keen to continue his career in hospitality. He loves cooking and would ideally like to travel the world, progressing his career overseas. Ultimately though, perhaps inspired by Ms. Gurr, he wants to help others to experience what he has by volunteering his time to teach others the skills he has developed, and he always attends the School's annual 'Hospitality Showcase'.

Isaac was attracted to the VET course at Bishop Tyrrell because he enjoyed the hands-on nature of the subject and the creativity of cooking. The College provides a range of VET courses such as Hospitality to provide a pathway for young people for practical, work-based learning that assists them in developing the knowledge and skills required for work and further study. VET courses enable students to gain industry skills and experience while studying for the HSC. Students receive accreditation and nationally recognised qualifications that can give them a head-start in their chosen careers after school.

The school has excellent facilities to ensure students get the most from their studies. There are STEM and design and technology labs with flexible learning spaces that are designed for collaborative learning, and to facilitate design and critical thinking. For hospitality students, there are commercial kitchens and a fully operational café enabling them to learn the business aspect of the subject and to put their skills to the test. For Hannah, and especially Isaac, this appears to have paid off handsomely!

Published by InTouch Magazine - Hands on Training The Key to Future Success