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Success as students secure jobs after new Parogon placement

From left, Jack, Wiktor and Kyle

A brand new training programme run between Parogon Group and Stoke-on-Trent College has been a huge success with three students earning a job.

Parogon and Stoke-on-Trent College have developed a partnership to offer a work experience program to trainee chefs. The program lasted for 12 weeks and involved learning the skills and practicality required for a future career working as a chef in one of the group’s fine dining venues. in kitchens.

The three students that were selected for this process; Jack Wall, (17), Wiktor Pocalun, (18), and Kyle Johnson-Cooper, (17), have all been offered jobs due to their impressive performance.

The new Parogon Commis Chefs had to go through a stringent recruitment process to be accepted on to the work experience placement before being selected.

Jack is now a part-time Commis Chef at The Wayfarer and Wiktor and Kyle are the latest part-time recruits at the Orange Tree.

Whilst studying the Level 2 Professional Cookery qualification, they were given the opportunity to apply.

Ben Allison, Operations Support Manager at Parogon Group met with the students who were interested first. He said: “I was honest about the hard work and dedication that our teams put into making our business a success and explained that we are able to maintain this by recruiting the right individuals.”

“We discussed the realities of what would be expected of the students within their placement and I was able to provide some insight into the life of a professional chef.”

The students then had one to ones with Ben who was keen to learn more about the individuals. He added: “We are always looking for the right personalities, so small things such as displaying their passion for food with a smile when describing favourite meals and ingredients, was what led me to reduce the shortlist down to Kyle, Jack and Wiktor.”

They initially undertook an eight-week trial period and impressed so much that this was extended to 12 weeks where they were given the job.

Katy Chesters, Business Development Associate at Stoke on Trent College, commented: “Parogon Group is one of the fastest growing employers in the hospitality sector in Staffordshire, with an outstanding reputation for high quality food and service.

We are proud to work in partnership with Ben and his team to provide a 12-week work experience programme for our catering students, and even prouder that this led directly to commis chef roles at The Wayfarer and The Orange Tree for Jack, Wiktor and Kyle. These are fantastic opportunities which will get their careers off to a great start, combining their new part time jobs with their catering qualifications at the college.”

The program had been worked on over 12 months between Parogon and Stoke-on-Trent College to develop a strong and efficient structure that would ensure the students learned as much as possible. They were given roles and stations each week from kitchen porter, to food prep, then to expediting, station shadowing and then being able to work on a station.

For more information about jobs at the Parogon Group visit: