Are you interested in a job in the food service industry?

The Center for Employment Services and Opportunities (CESO) at Chapel Haven Schleifer Center is proud to announce a new, customized Culinary Arts Program and externship that will help lead interested candidates into the culinary arts field.

Our Culinary Arts program can help you turn your passion for food into an exciting career in the rapidly growing food industry. Students gain hands-on experience, while learning basic culinary skills in a state of the art kitchen and also within our client-run Café.

The nine-month program provides adults who wish to prepare for competitive employment within the culinary industry, robust training paired with an authentic hands-on work experience. Through practical culinary externships in true work environments, students are fully immersed in the workplace, acquiring marketable job-specific and transferrable skills.

Joanne Heller is Chapel Haven’s new cafe director.

In addition to all that is learned on the job, participants receive classroom instruction on basic culinary skills and learning objectives in order to sit for their ServSafe® certification exam(s).

Lesson topics include: professional appearance and behavior, basic baking theory and skills, introduction to breads, and basic culinary fundamentals including: food safety and sanitation, knife skills, stocks, sauces, various cooking techniques, recipe costing, and culinary math. Students will benefit from reinforcement and practice of independent living skills by planning for and/or preparing daily lunches, managing and maintaining a professional uniform and appearance, and navigating to and from the culinary classroom, kitchen and externship locations independently.

Potential Career Paths Exist Within:

  • Restaurants
  • Resorts
  • Hotels
  • Catering Companies
  • Corporate and Institutional Dining
  • Non Profits
  • Retail
  • Food Processing
  • Cafes
  • Schools
  • Nursing Homes
  • Hospitals
  • Wedding/Banquet Halls

For example some of these entry level positions may include: Pantry Cook, Prep Cook, Server, Bartender, Cook, and Baker with opportunities for advancement.


  • Students are actively participating in the program 4 days per week
  • There is a combination of online and in class course work in conjunction with learning in a commercial kitchen
  • Students take field trips to food venues, restaurants, and food industry manufacturers, and hear from leading guest speakers in the industry
  • Career Transition Specialists provide 1:1 support during practical training periods with the goal of fading out once job skills are mastered, allowing participants to utilize natural supports in the work environment
  • Graduates of the Culinary Training program have a wide variety of job opportunities available in the industry and will receive placement services from Chapel Haven’s Center for Employment Services & Opportunities upon successful completion of the program
  • Testing for ServSafe® Food Handler and/or ServSafe® Manager Certifications offered

This is a comprehensive tuition-based program. For more information, external Chapel Haven applicants, please contact Christy Chandler, Director of Admissions a  or (203) 397-1714 x185. Individuals currently enrolled in Chapel Haven programs may contact Sarah Elsdon, Career Development Advisor at or (203) 397-1714 x215.