Café Offers ESBOCES Students Food Service Experience in Age of COVID Restrictions
Take a look at the new coffee café at Islip Career Center. Food Prep Teacher Lauren Daquet recently launched it, along with the new barista training, for her second-year students who are unable to participate in the many in-house catering events that are on hiatus due to COVID restrictions. Students trained in the use of commercial-grade coffee equipment take phone orders, and create and package a large variety of custom and seasonal drink orders. A separate phone line was installed to accommodate the large volume of orders because the café is open all day, every day, to both students and staff. Completed orders are delivered to classrooms and offices. The ICC Carpentry class fabricated the large menu board on the wall and the school’s Graphics programs designed the custom drink sleeves, menus, and frequent buyer cards.
“There is a large job market for baristas, and it’s not just Dunkin Donuts and Starbucks,” explained Daquet. “It’s small coffee shops, hotels, and restaurants. It’s such a skill to have. You need to know how to make coffee, how to steam milk, how to time an espresso shot, how to grind beans, know the difference in milk requirements for cappuccinos and lattes. There are numerous details.”
Islip Career Center is an Eastern Suffolk BOCES school that offers Special Career Education programs, which provide skills training to students with special education needs. This training may enable them to obtain entry-level employment in certain industries.