Community Kitchen Academy is a culinary job training program operated in partnership between Feeding Chittenden and the Vermont Foodbank. Students develop the professional and inter-personal skills they need to find and retain employment in the hospitality industry. Meals prepared in the program are used to fight hunger in the community.

A professional chef instructor teaches unemployed and underemployed Vermonters marketable skills that prepare them for sustainable careers in the food service industry, helping to break the cycle of poverty and hunger.

We have adopted an open enrollment plan to make it easier for potential students to take part in the program. Participants can apply to the course and begin their 9 week culinary education when it works best for them. Applications can be submitted at any time, and we will contact applicants for interviews shortly after.

Students learn about safe kitchen practices—including safe knife handling, preventing cuts, burns, handling accidents and fires, managing food allergies—and a variety of skills such as knife sharpening, knife and equipment identification, food safety practices, various cooking methods, food receiving and storage, the preparation of nutritious recipes and appropriate portion sizes.

Students will also undergo ServSafe training - a nationally recognized certification program essential to safety in food production and storage.

The combination of this specialized culinary skills training and the work readiness training provided through the integrated life skills program ensure that upon graduation, students will be certified professionals who are ready and qualified to gain employment in the food service industry. In addition to job training, Community Kitchen Academy performs another function, rescuing produce, meat and other foods that would otherwise be wasted from restaurants, farms and food service companies.

Students work with instructors to cook the food and produce meals that are then cryovac sealed and sent out through the Feeding Chittenden Soup Kitchen and Food Shelf.




For more information about Community Kitchen Academy or to request a paper copy of an application, please contact:

Jon Barzensky
Chef Instructor


The hands-on instruction and college-level academic work required of CKA graduates makes them ideal candidates for positions in the culinary industry.

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