Monday, 20 November 2023 07:26

Pilot Blended Skills competition – Zwolle, The Netherlands

From 6 to 16 November, a 'Blended skills competition' took place at Horeca Landstede in Zwolle. This competition was organized as a pilot from the 'Tourism Education of the Future' TEF-project in which Landstede participates with a number of foreign schools. 3 students from Cebanc (SP), Bougas (GR), Landstede and a number of teachers participated. The 1st week kicked off with an online introduction, in which the students had to present themselves using a pre-made presentation. After the introduction, they were given the following assignment: 'Present the 10 most important cultural aspects of your country' and 'Present the landscape of gastronomic culture in your country including at least 5 common kitchen techniques'. The students enthusiastically set to work and presented their concept to the teachers on 7 November. After receiving more tips and tricks, the final presentations were held on 8 November for all involved.

The Spanish and Greek students arrived in the Netherlands on 13 November. On the 14th we started at Restaurant Ensemble with an introduction to successful entrepreneurship by Yannick Schweitz, followed by performing various assignments aimed at activating the creative part of the brain. After this we went to Restaurant Waber where we were introduced to Indonesian cuisine.  Then the 3 groups were composed of 1 Dutch, 1 Spanish and 1 Greek student and the real challenge began: 'Create a 3-course menu containing a clear signature of each country, using the available regional products'.

The concepts for this were shared with the teachers later in the afternoon for feedback. On 15 November, the shopping was done and then the mise-en-place, cooking and final dishes presented before a multicultural jury à la Masterchef. All the communication had to be done in English which meant an extra challenge for some students! For the teachers it was great to see how the shared passion for cooking turned out to be a language in itself and this ensured that in the kitchen the cooperation was a joy to see.

The assembled groups were finally judged on both their individual efforts and group final results. The winners received €100 p.p. and all participants received a certificate and an inscribed Santo knife as a lasting memory.

But the "blending" didn't stop at Hospitality!  Beauty and hair care students took care of all participants, both students and teachers, so that they looked their best for the filming that was done by students from the Production House of Landstede.  Once the production is available, the link will be shared.

At the same time, a competition also took place in Portugal among students from the other partners in the TEF project. The aim from the TEF project is to share experiences but also to deliver a manual: ‘How to organize blended skills’. As soon as the manual becomes available, it will also be shared.

Thanks to all colleagues who made this possible.

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