There is no such thing as a language barrier in First Gourmet Academy nor is it restrictive in educating different nationalities; this is one of the highlights of the institution, which is to be able to teach everyone without the limits of age, gender, race or social status. Our vision, after all, is “to be recognized globally in making a difference in the culinary world of teaching and taking the challenge of shaping this in-demand industry to fit the ever changing facets in the art of cooking.”
The Bureau of Immigration is the officiating agency in the Philippines giving the authority to schools like us to accept foreign students to enroll and study in our country. It checks the records of the foreign student if he is not on the blacklist and has no derogatory records. It also issues a Special Study Permit for those foreign students who want to study here. We are on their website as an accredited school that accepts foreign students. Not all schools in the Philippines are allowed to accept foreign students.
Fun-filled and blooming with healthy interaction, learning culinary arts in First Gourmet Academy is definitely a memorable experience. Students from various places take up the mantle to cook and begin a gastronomic journey – you can expect different nationalities happily buzzing about in our kitchen.
We interviewed aspiring chef, Wong Bae, to give us a peek on life inside First Gourmet Academy.
Q: When did you arrive in the country?
Wong Bae: I arrived in the Philippines on February 25, 2015.
Q: Why did you choose to study culinary here in the Philippines?
Wong Bae: At first, I only planned to study English for six months here in the Philippines. But I thought if I stayed longer I will learn more. Fortunately, my mother chose a culinary school near my house, it turned out the culinary school has a very good system especially when it comes to cooking.
Q: How did you know about First Gourmet Academy?
Wong Bae: My first teacher saw this school (First Gourmet Academy) on the Internet and recommended it to my mother.
Q: What pushed you to go to First Gourmet Academy?
Wong Bae: The school system has a lot of actual kitchen work. It also supports a good internship program. Lastly, the Diploma program, which is only one year, is excellent for its time allotment.
Q: What are the major problems you have encountered studying culinary arts here? How did you deal with it?
Wong Bae: At first, I had problems communicating to my teachers and other students so I always asked my English teacher for help.
Q: How has First Gourmet Academy helped in your culinary education?
Wong Bae: First Gourmet Academy has helped me achieve masterful dishes. With persistence, I have tried cooking dishes with different ingredients, even expensive ones like saffron, vanilla and foie gras.
Q: Kindly cite some memorable experiences at First Gourmet Academy.
Wong Bae: The most memorable experience for me was when we started hands-on cooking. I had to cook eggs and potatoes in many different ways because that is never really taught in Korea; a challenging experience, if you ask me.
Q: What do you consider your culinary weaknesses before going to First Gourmet Academy?
Wong Bae: Before enrolling at First Gourmet Academy, I didn’t know any international cuisines or the names of dishes from other countries.
ON LOVE FOR COOKING
Q: When did you see yourself as a chef?
Wong Bae: When I was 19 years old, I got interested in cooking so I studied and eventually earned a certificate for it. At that time, l started to aspire to become a good chef.
Q: What would be your signature dish and your favourite cuisine? Why?
Wong Bae: My signature dish is any kind of pasta. My favorite cuisine is Italian because I like Western dishes; I also love cooking noodles.
Q: How has your love for cooking affected your life?
Wong Bae: I love cooking and everything about it so I appreciate all kinds of culinary dishes.
TIPS FOR FUTURE CULINARY STUDENTS
Q: Will you recommend First Gourmet Academy to your fellow Koreans? Why or why not?
Wong Bae: Yes. There is actually a big difference between Korean culinary schools and First Gourmet Academy. At First Gourmet Academy, you will learn many things like international cuisines; you will definitely excel because the program is fun-filled, exciting and productive.
Q: Do you have any advice for Koreans pursuing a culinary education here in the Philippines?
Wong Bae: Well, there are actually two things. First, study English hard because communication is very important in the kitchen. Second, we must always feel happy when doing kitchen work in school. It’s a training ground for hotels and restaurants in the real world. Just remember to study very hard and to never give up.
First Gourmet Academy is the only culinary school in the Philippines that is recognized by both the World Association of Chefs Societies (WACS) and the American Culinary Federation (ACF). Because of its values, it is well-suited for all nationalities. There are no barriers in the culinary world so expect learning from our seasoned instructors with pride and excellence. If interested, please sign up using our contact form or reach us via email at firstname.lastname@example.org.