Our School

ICT is a nonprofit chef’s school in Cape Town, South Africa, providing the basic cooking skills, professional tools, and all-important life skills necessary for graduates to obtain immediate employment in the hospitality industry. 

ICT helps bridge the gap between poverty and jobs by providing graduates with not only the skills, but the confidence, determination, and long-term vision to embark on a productive and sustainable future.

Our work doesn’t stop when a student graduates.  We remain in contact with our graduates and their employers to ensure a person's continued growth in the professional world.

Candidates are carefully screened for desire, commitment and dedication to personal growth.  Individual attention is paid to each student, as he or she is often battling the scars and personal demons of a difficult and troubled upbringing and environment. 

Over 80% of all ICT's nearly 600 graduates are working and supporting their families -- and inspiring others in their communities to do the same.

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Woolworths South Africa is our exclusive and dedicated food sponsor.  Many of our students consume more fresh vegetables and fruit in their first three weeks of class than they have cumulatively in their entire lives.

At ICT, we live by the proverb: "To change one life is to change the world."  We are fortunate enough to see this happen every single day.

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COOKing

Complete basic training

in the products, skills,

tools, cooking methods,

hygiene and safety of

the professional kitchen.

Students have jobs after just three months of starting class.

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life skills

Life skills are at the heart of our work, freeing students to take control of their lives, to engage with the world in

new and meaningful ways,

and to develop a personal philosophy with which to
continue to grow amid life's inevitable challenges.

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careers

ICT students learn to take

the long view toward a career.  

 

Chefs grow and change, different interests and curiosities arise. ICT provides graduates with ongoing, year-after-year career guidance and counseling. 

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Giving Back

ICT students and graduates give back to one another and to their communities. Our work in local children's centers deepens our students' awareness to the plights of others, and allows them the opportunity to bring joy to those less fortunate.

A Sampling of Our Curriculum

Phase One: Ten Weeks

Daily Classes

7:30 am to 4:30 pm, Monday-Friday

Boot Camp: The First Two Weeks 

  • Intensive physical and mental training

  • Knife skills

  • Life skills

  • Mathematics for the kitchen (and beyond)

  • Professional hygiene and safety

The Next Eight Weeks:

  • Continuation of above

  • The business and economic realities of the restaurant and hospitality industry

  • Formulation of The Professional Mindset

  • The proper use of all kitchen equipment and tools

  • Knowledge of cooking methods and ingredients

  • Proper nutrition and food’s place in various cultures

  • Knowledge of 35 herbs & spices

  • Cold Kitchen Basics: Fruit & vegetable preparation and handling; salads & salad dressings; cheese & dairy; mayonnaise

  • Hot Kitchen Basics: Stocks & soups, eggs & various breakfasts, The Mother Sauces, Pasta, Potatoes, Rice; meat, poultry, fish & seafood; grains & pulses

  • Pastry Kitchen: Basic Bread Making; flavored breads; muffins & pastries; cakes & cake decoration; meringue; custard-based desserts

  • Recipes and menu creation

  • Plating and presentation

  • Daily life skills conversations and exercises (this is at the heart of our work)

  • Understanding the job market; polishing job interview skills
  • Verbal presentations

  • Weekly one-on-one meetings student meetings; personal and professional progress assessments

  • Participation in The ICT/Woolworths Feeding Program

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Phase Two: Three Weeks

Professional Internships

Students must be available 7 days per week, to work day or night shifts​

  • Each student is provided with an internship in a Cape Town restaurant or hotel​ and work full shifts 5-6 days per week; transport paid; essentially, this is a three-week job interview.

Phase Three: Three Months

Employment

  • Each student must hold the job earned during their internship for three months in order to graduate.

Students must earn their way from each phase to the next. All three phases must be satisfactorily completed in order for a student to be awarded an ICT certificate of completion.