Saturday, August 9, 2008


This is going to be used to inform people about what I'm doing here, what I'm learning, and how I'm growing. I am currently fulfilling the first of three required semesters of internships for my school. They can be anywhere as long as it is for 4-6monthes and is related in some way to hospitality. First semester at my school, Les Roches in Bluche, Switzerland, is focused on service. The practical half of the semester includes serving in the buffet style, a la carte style, fast food style, and banquet style restaurants of the school, as well as a short stint as dishwashers. The academic half is focused on the basics, an introduction to the world of hospitality. This includes a taste of front office, housekeeping, rooms division, Intro. to Hospitality, food knowledge, a required language (I did spanish, but may change it to intermediate french next semester), and required writing course.

Most Students find a 5 star hotel to work as a server, a front office person, a dishwasher, a potatoe peeler (this is actually true and rather unfortuanate), but I chose to remain at Les Roches as a stagiere. The school hires about 10 stagieres each semester to aid in the practical classes. They help teach the students, oversee the work, set up mise-en-place(prepping food for later use by students), etc. The stagieres are required to have completed thier second year here (kitchen year), but because I went to NCC (my community college) and completed the same courses there that they offer here, the school hired me. I did have to fight for it though, they were rather reluctant.

I was initially stressed about this, thinking that both the stagieres and students would not see me as qualified to do my job, though I know I am, and I would have to work harder than the others in order to earn that respect. This was not the case at all. I was respected right off the bat, so all is well there. Another worry of mine is that I will not know "the way" of Les Roches when it comes to Kitchen. I know what I learned in the US, but they may do things differently here, and the chefs have little patience for incompetent stagieres. I plan on shadowing my fellow Stag. who is currently in the position I will be in.

The first half of my internship is spent in the Cafe du Village (CDV). It is the fast food restaurant on campus. I help teach the service students how to handle angry impatient guests, and how to serve correctly. I also help the kitchen students organize thier orders and occasionally make the food, if they are short staffed, or someone is particularly slow (physically or/and mentally). I often times help prepare desserts (aka scoop icecream and cut tarts). after lunch and dinner service I just hang around, sell drinks and greasy food, cook it, yell out order numbers, smile a lot, keep people happy, that sort of stuff. This is a good place for Americans...we're used to these kinds of jobs I suppose hahaha.

The second half of my internship will be in Market Place, the self serve, mass production, main restaurant here. I will be spending two days teaching the service students and 3 days doing Kitchen. I have no idea what this entails....the service part yes, but not the kitchen.

I'll post more later, but this seems like a pretty good introduction. Love you all.


Albert Meier said...

Go Lia!

Anonymous said...

Cool. I finally have a good idea of what you're doing. Keep posting.