Xóchitl Montoya, a current student in the Post Graduate Culinary Management Program, came to study at Selkirk College from Mexico City. After travelling to Canada and visiting Nelson, she promised herself that she would one day live in the small town that was rich in culture and art.
“Nelson is one of those places that exists where the community is conscious of the effects, both social, political and environmental, of having chain stores that could disrupt a society that supports local and organic farms. It is a place where farmers grow their own gardens and offer products at local markets; a place where artisans and gardeners meet.”
Xóchitl was excited about the Post Graduate Culinary Management program as it contained three key components that she valued - practical training, management classes and a work term experience. She says that these components gave her a wider view of the industry as well as more options for her professional future.
“I won something very valuable during my practicum. Confidence. Cooking is more than just coming up with a good dish. It is a sum of work and personal skills and talents that need to be developed.”
Xóchitl expressed that Selkirk College offers what students need in terms of facilities, equipment and small classrooms, which allow instructors to help students’ individual situations and needs and allowing them to succeed. “Studying at Selkirk College is not everything,” she explains.
“Getting along with other students is important in having a friendly environment. The college organizes social events so you can meet new people and go on trips. Visiting the ski resort is another place where you can have a great time interacting with other people outside of school.”
Xóchitl plans to graduate and move to a bigger city where she can get a job in a large company where she can further explore her culinary skills and build a successful career in her industry.
“My message to other students would be to encourage them to explore the world. Explore your limits and when you think you have found them, don’t stop. Instead, go beyond and leave your comfort zone where you will be sure to find something exciting. Studying abroad and in Canada, and at Selkirk College, was a great choice.”
Xóchitl received the International Entrance Scholarship.