Kaua`i Community College Blesses its new Culinary Arts Program Kitchens

Kauaʻi Community College
Camilla Matsumoto, (808) 245-8280
Director, Community Services & Special Projects, Chancellor's Office
Posted: Nov 21, 2012

Fundamental Skills Learning Kitchens
Fundamental Skills Learning Kitchens
From left to right:   Martina Hildorfer - Chef Instructor; Mark Oyama, Chef Instructor, Bonnie Honma
From left to right: Martina Hildorfer - Chef Instructor; Mark Oyama, Chef Instructor, Bonnie Honma


Kaua'i Community College blessed its newly completed Culinary Arts Fundamental Skills Learning Kitchens on Monday. The blessing was performed by the Reverend Wayne A. Vidinha, Sr. of Ke Akua Mana Church.


About eight years ago, the concept of a fundamentals skills learning facility began to unfold as Kaua`i Community College chef instructors agreed that a facility was needed to compliment what students learn in the higher level Cuisine courses.  They needed, what Chef Instructor Mark Oyama called, “a different kind of kitchen to teach the fundamentals of Culinary Arts,” where students could learn the fundamental concepts, skills and techniques of food preparation.


The blessing was an opportunity to acknowledge key professionals who were instrumental in guiding the project from start to finish.  They included design consultant Shimokawa Nakamura; Kaua`i Builders; project inspectors from the State Department of Accounting and General Services (DAGS); and key administrators, project manager and staff from the UH Office of the Vice President for Community Colleges.


The site of the former Kaua`i CC Bookstore was chosen for this project, and with the expert design input of Kaua`i CC’s chef instructors, was transformed into a state-of-the-art learning facility.  The kitchens will serve as learning stations where students will learn and practice basic cooking methods for meats, stocks, soups, sauces, seafood, vegetable, ad starches.  They will also learn to properly use and maintain equipment, tools, and utensils.


“This is an exciting moment for the College.  Everyone in the community knows our Culinary Arts program, and our students go to the program into jobs across the community.  This new facility will enable this already strong program to be able to better serve our students and our public,” explained Helen A. Cox, Kaua`i CC Chancellor.


Chef instructor Martina Hilldorfer instructor of the fundamentals courses said, “The new facility is an integral part of student learning outcomes, which serve to cultivate a better quality of skilled graduates who enter the workforce with confidence in what they can do.  I am so proud of our students and faculty—both with us now and those who have retired, staff, and administration for their efforts to keep a sharp and careful focus on successful learning.”  The new kitchens “will also be used for future training to prepare students for Culinary Arts competitions,” said Chef Instructor Steven Nakata. 


The Kaua`i CC Culinary Arts Program faculty and staff want to thank community donors, island and neighbor island chefs who have stood behind them, and all who come out to support Kaua`i CC’s Culinary Arts Program.


Mahalo nui loa from Culinary Arts Program faculty:  Mark Oyama, Martina Hilldorfer, Steven Nakata, and Duane Miyasato; and staff:  Melanie Bacio and Karen Morita-Lee.