South Devon College

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Former College apprentice secures a job at The Ritz

Former College apprentice secures a job at The Ritz

After completing his apprenticeship in June, Former NVQ Level 2 Food and Beverage Service student Gary Lee has successfully secured work at The Ritz in London. Prior to this, Gary worked at the Edgemoor Hotel in Bovey Tracey as front of house Duty Manager as well as Horizons Restaurant, based at South Devon College.

Horizons specialises in fine dining all prepared and served by the students, with guidance from College staff. Classes are delivered in this environment to give learners the knowledge and skills the finest restaurants and hotels desire.

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Gary worked extremely hard to gain his qualification to the highest standard he could. Martin Lloyd, Trainer Facilitator for Hospitality and Catering said, “Gary was always keen to learn and develop his knowledge and skills at every opportunity, soaking up as much information as I could share with him as his teacher. He was always on time and immaculately presented. His excellent social skills and the passion he displayed in a restaurant environment was a pleasure to witness. Our customers regularly commented on his excellent service and high levels of customer care.”

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Through the College, Gary was given the opportunity to undergo a week’s work experience at The Ritz London, within The Ritz Restaurant. Gary said “I absolutely loved my experience at The Ritz. It was like walking into a completely different world; the hotel’s standards are so high and the hotel is immaculate. I was completely mesmerised by all the aspects of the work experience as well as the location.”

Impressed by Gary’s standard of work and skills demonstrated during his work placement, The Ritz London, they offered him a permanent position as a Commis Waiter in the one-Michelin starred Ritz Restaurant. He started his employment at The Ritz in September 2016 and is currently working there now. Gary said “It is an extremely rewarding job, an absolutely surreal experience.” He added “My tutor at South Devon College, Martin Lloyd, supported me through every aspect of my work and made me a much more confident person. South Devon College has prepared me for working life and has helped me develop my passion for the Hospitality and Catering Industry. Martin has taught me absolutely everything I know and has helped me to get where I am today. He inspired me, and I will carry his advice with me through every stage of my career.”

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Martin said “I feel extremely proud and overwhelmed by Gary’s success and I am happy that I have given him the confidence and opportunities to excel in his career. It is satisfying as a teacher to pass on important work lessons and experience to my students and particularly to see Gary move in the same career path that I have experienced. Gary has been an inspiration to many of the students at South Devon College and I’m sure he will do an excellent job in whatever he does.”

For more information on our Hospitality and Catering courses and apprenticeships, please contact our Helpzone team on 08000 380 123 or enquiries@southdevon.ac.uk.

Alternatively, come along to our next Open Evening on Thursday 26th January 2017 from 5pm-8pm or our Apprenticeship Information session on Monday 13th February 2017 at 9am and 1pm at our Vantage Point Campus, Long Road, Paignton, TQ4 7EJ. Visit our website for more information today.