Ararat College's hospitality trade training centre nears completion

Ararat College’s hospitality trade training centre is nearing competition. Picture: PETER
Ararat College’s hospitality trade training centre is nearing competition. Picture: PETER PICKERING.

WORK on Ararat College's state of the art hospitality trade training centre is due for completion at the end of this month.

Final preparations are being put in place on the multi-million dollar facility, which will accommodate students across the region who are completing Certificates in Hospitality and Catering, while it will also be available for community hire.

After years of planning Ararat College principal, Geoff Sawyer said it was extremely pleasing to see the building nearing completion.

"We are thinking about a name for the restaurant at the moment and my money is on 'Utopia' because that is exactly the feeling you get of finally having achieved this," he jokingly said.

"It has been a very big journey to get to where we have. For this region and our school, I am so pleased with how it has come together."

Mr Sawyer said he has been very happy to work with building company, WP Construction, which also built the college's Science and Language Centre.

"The builders have been terrific to work with, nothing has been too much trouble, we're within budget and we've proceeded pretty much along the time frame it was suppose to," he said.

"All the things that you would want to happen when building have happened."

The facility includes a dinning room and bar area which will be able to seat about 100 people and can also be divided off and double as a hospitality classroom where students can complete theory work.

Mr Sawyer said the stainless steal commercial kitchen is restaurant quality standard and has the capacity for 18 students and a teacher.

"With the VET courses they limit it to that sort of figure to keep things manageable, so we are up to standard there," he said.

"There are computer screens in the kitchen too that link to a camera so the students can watch the teacher's demonstration from their work stations and it can be video conferenced as well. It is all state of the art stuff."

At the rear of the building landscaping work is well underway, which also includes a herb garden so students can use ingredients that they have actually grown themselves.

The hospitality building has been linked into the College's senior school centre, which has also recently undergone a face-lift that includes artificial turf and a shade sail, while a new LED sign has been erected which complements the precinct. These new features were funded separately to the trade training centre.

"As part of the VET Hospitality training there will be a barist course and the students can actually make coffees and sell them from the window that faces the senior school centre," Mr Sawyer said.

"It will be a great facility not only for our students and the other students from the local secondary schools to use for VET Hospitality, but as a community resource.

"It will be available to hire as a venue for all types of functions, from small weddings, community groups, clubs - a whole range of things.

"I'd like to see it used for French or Asian cooking courses or something along those lines, so the community can come in and learn in the facility too."

A grand opening of the hospitality trade training centre is planned for term four.


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