Finding and training the next generation with the Skills Pathways Project

Dan Hong with John Hart.

Dan Hong with John Hart.

Four aspiring young chefs have taken part in an exclusive cooking session with award-winning chef Dan Hong, as part of Restaurant & Catering Australia’s (R&CA) Skills Pathways Project.

The four winners entered the Skills Passport competition, which required them to create an online CV in a free, convenient and secure ‘Skills Passport’ on the Discover Hospitality website.

The Discover Hospitality website at is an industry-specific online recruitment platform that connects apprentices and qualified staff with employers.

The four Discover Hospitality competition winners—The Grand National Hotel apprentice Lyric Adorned, Rockwell Catering apprentice Madeleine Pointing, science student David Michalowsky and hospitality student Gigi Bechara—participated in a cooking session with Dan Hong at his Sydney restaurant, Mr Wong.

The four winning chefs were shown what it takes to be an apprentice at the Merivale establishment by preparing a number of dishes during the busy Saturday lunch service.

The Discover Hospitality website is the go-to place for the Skills Pathways Project; a $7 million initiative, with $4.9 million provided through the Australian Government’s Accelerated Australian Apprenticeships initiative.

The Skills Pathways Project seeks to support competency-based progression of apprentices, help improve apprentice retention rates, up-skill chefs and supervisors, and improve the quality of workers to meet industry needs.

As part of the Skills Pathways Project, the Certificate III in Hospitality and the Certificate IV in Commercial Cookery apprenticeships have recently become available in NSW at the Western Sydney Institute and Northern Sydney Institute.

R&CA chief executive officer John Hart believes the on- and off-the-job learning provides the most ‘job-ready’ graduates. “Australia has a reputation of producing high-calibre staff. The skills gained through their training can be transferred to any part of the world. In fact, they are highly sought after,” he said.

Those interested in any of the Skills Pathways are encouraged to register their interest at 

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