Prospective Students

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The Second Helpings Culinary Job Training program prepares unemployed and underemployed adults for careers in the foodservice industry. This helps eliminate hunger at its source. More than 850 adults have graduated from this program, and Second Helpings alumni are now working in Central Indiana as cooks, executive chefs, business owners and culinary instructors.

Program Requirements:

  • Pre-Testing: Applicants must score at least 70% on a pre-admission exam measuring math, reading and retention skills.
  • Age: Candidate must be at least 18 years of age by the first day of class.
  • Residential Status: Candidate must be in a stable living environment (own/rent house or apartment, shelter resident, live with friends or relatives, etc.).
  • Employment Status: Candidate must be unemployed or underemployed at the time of application. Applicant must be interested in obtaining work in the foodservice industry.
  • Substance Abuse: Individuals must be drug/substance free, or be actively involved in a treatment program and/or support group. Even if in a treatment program, the individual must be substance-free while on the premises of Second Helpings.
  • Self-Management: All persons involved in the Second Helpings job training program must be capable of self-management, i.e., able to take care of personal hygiene, eating, toilet requirements.
  • Literacy: Candidates in the Culinary Job Training program must be able to read at the 8th grade level, and possess elementary math skills.
  • Expectations/Policies: Candidates accepted into the program must be willing to adhere to the dress, attendance, safe food handling, facility, and other policies of Second Helpings, Inc.

What you get:

Culinary Skills

  • Knife Skills
  • Mise en Place
  • Soups, Stocks, and Sauces
  • Seasonings and Flavorings
  • Classic Cooking Techniques and Preparation
  • Breakfast Cookery
  • Poultry, Beef, Pork, Fish and Vegetarian Cooking
  • Buffet Set-up and Cook-to-Order Skills
  • Sous Chef Practice and instruction

Skills Beyond The Kitchen

  • Food Safety Training – ServSafe® Manager Certification
  • Job Interview Skills and Job Readiness
  • Time Management
  • Financial Literacy
  • Life Skills Coaching
  • Teambuilding
  • First AID/CPR
  • Support/Guidance from Staff


  • 2 weeks of accumulated classroom instruction with assessments
  • Classroom work based on college-level book Introduction to Culinary Arts by The Culinary Institute of America, Second edition
  • 5 weeks intensive food preparation
  • Guidance and instruction from Second Helpings Chefs and guest chef instructors
  • 5 Ivy Tech credit hours – Basic Food Theory, Safety and Sanitation
  • American Culinary Federation Education Foundation Quality of Excellence Program
  • Cook Certification – American Hotel and Lodging Education Institute