FCS classes sell homemade meals for high school staff

FCS teacher Madison Walker started in class this January, and Walker has been implementing new programs for culinary students, one being The Tiger Cafe. The Tiger Cafe creates and sells meals for teachers and school staff, both take and bake meals and ready to go meals.

“Tiger Cafe has done two Take’n’Bake meals now. We have made tater tot casserole with chocolate chip cookies and lasagna with bread sticks,” Walker said.

Walker encourages students to work on their cooking skills while getting a feel for the food industry.

“Through this class I hope that students continue to enhance their culinary skills while they learn how to work as group to successfully produce meals. If a student enjoys culinary, working with others and wanting to experience the culinary field, I would tell them to take Tiger Cafe.”

Walker credits her previous experiences during college for her inspiration to start something new at Cedar Falls High School.

“During student-teaching I got to experience Hampton-Dumonts’ Bulldog Cafe and was amazed by the students and the skills that they have gained from being in the class. Having that experience with those students made me want to do something similar here at Cedar Falls,” Walker said.

The Tiger Cafe gives students the chance to not only learn new things, but to also have fun with friends and have a class outside the normal routine.

 “I have learned about working with others because you most definitely have to work together to get things done with as many people as we have in the class. My favorite thing is spending time with my friends and also cooking because cooking really relaxes me and takes stress away from the school day,” senior Ashley Dreesman said. “It’s fun bonding with people and learning what working in a restaurant or culinary business is like. I liked our cake competition and having the teachers test them out.”

Senior Arianna Lickness uses the class to learn more about the food industry and to gain independence.

“I’ve learned there is a lot more to food preparation than I thought. Meal planning take a lot of time as well. Working with my friends and having more control about what we do and how we do it is what I hope to learn,” Lickness said.

While the class has only been up and running for about a semester, Walker has received positive feedback and said she hopes to expand the class to continue to connect with students.

“My favorite thing about Tiger Cafe is seeing the students work to produce meals. They come to class and work hard. I have a great group of students. The feedback that I have gotten from customers has been amazing; those comments make it all worth it. It warms my heart having a great staff that is supporting Tiger Cafe,” Walker said. “My future plan for Tiger Cafe is to have an actual sit down cafe where students will serve a three course meal to customers. If Tiger Cafe continues to grow, I would love to open up Tiger Cafe to the community.”

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