Students skilled in the art of coffee making at St Brendan's College
YOU'D be forgiven for thinking these students were experienced baristas working in one of our local café's after tasting one of their delicious cups of coffee.
However they're not far away from it, after training in their high school's café, known as the Chapel Café at St Brendan's College over the past year.
Sam, Cody, Eldrick and Matthew are just four of several senior students learning the skills of becoming a qualified barista upon graduating year 12.
Vocational officer and creator of the program Sue Waddell wanted to share the success of the training facility and commercial café after reading The Mirror's recent Coast Café Culture Q&A, featuring local baristas.
"Our year 11 and 12 Tourism students learn the art of coffee making, and receive a Certificate II in Tourism,” Mrs Waddell told The Capricorn Coast Mirror last week.
"I was looking for a genuine employment opportunity, that didn't matter if kids were just wanting a casual job or going to uni and wanted work, or trying to find full time employment - I thought the skill of making coffee could be taken anywhere in Australia, anywhere around the world.
"And so it was really at the start of the café culture taking hold here, so with that in mind we've had a lot of kids get part time work and full time work out of it.”
Making milkshakes, cappuccino's, latte's, affogato's and the very popular iced chocolate, are just some of the beverages the students get to perfect throughout their training.
"It's been about five years we've been doing it, and it's become entrenched in the school...not only do they make milkshakes and coffee for our students and staff, but at our evening functions, guitar nights and concerts, they make a full range of coffees to sell to our parents and other visitors,” Mrs Waddell said proudly.
"Our coffee students also participate in work experience in the local cafes, which have been very supportive over many years.
"A number of the students have then obtained casual employment in those cafes.
"The students who take this course are a mix of OP, rodeo, trade and hospitality students, many of whom have come from communities with very little exposure to a café culture. She said seeing the students progress throughout their training was really special.
"They come in and they're terrified, a lot of them shaking, because it's just so out of their comfort zone, but we've got a really good teacher aide with Chris Broad whose worked in the café industry as well, and the pair of us train them.
"They've really appreciated the skill of being able to make coffee, but also the appreciation of the café culture and having the personal confidence to go and be part of that scene, whether it's as a customer or someone working there.”