Back to School – NWCAV

This essay was submitted as a part of my application for the Professional Culinary Arts Diploma at the Northwest Culinary Academy of Vancouver. And sharing it here on my blog is my attempt to embrace vulnerability; to share my thoughts and to proclaim my ambitions. To use my strengths to strengthen my weaknesses…

As always, I thank you for reading along.

I’ll see you in the kitchen, Piggies!


chef and i

I’ve known for quite some time now that the Northwest Culinary Academy of Vancouver (NWCAV) is where I want to be; a new form of education, a new type of challenge, a new perspective on the culinary world. And what better time to start this new adventure than in the New Year.

2015 is going to be different.

It has been exactly one year since I began the delicious adventure that is food blogging. What started as a playful idea to explore the Vancouver culinary scene and document my guilt-free foodie moments quickly became a lifestyle of reviewing local restaurants, travelling throughout the Okanagan wine country, capturing cooking moments at home, and attending fabulous events put on by organisations such as the BC Hospitality Foundation and the Social Concierge. Furthermore, in addition to writing for myself, I also began writing various contributions for other local publications – topics ranged from dining experiences to product samples and reviews of different kitchen tools and appliances. I welcomed each and every one of these tasks with open arms. Not just for the experience of trying new ‘it’ places or indulging in endless sweets and treats, but for the opportunity to practice my craft; to write better, to tell better stories.

A good Food Writer has respect for the ingredients and an appreciation for where the food comes from. They understand what it takes to conduct a successful dinner service and they know the creative process required to develop an award-winning menu. A good Food Writer needs to stay on top of ever-changing food trends and be able to communicate their experiences in a way that both educates and captivates their audience. If I’m going to be a Food Writer, a really good one, I know that I need to put in the work in the kitchen; I need the culinary education. And that’s why I want to attend the NWCAV.

How do I know that this institution is the right choice for me? Well, that’s easy: I fell in love with this school and the instructors when I took their 8 week Culinary Basics Program back in early 2014. The skills that we picked up in such a short amount of time made me realise the depth of education that I could receive should I decide to commit full-time. The new friendships I made showed me that there is a world of people out there that are equally as passionate about the culinary industry as I am; and how much I long to work in a social environment. And lastly, the quality of instruction that we received, week after week, topic after topic, reminded me how powerful a good teacher can be. The knowledge and the skill set that I believe I will receive from my time at NWCAV is likely going to change my career, my life, forever.

Applying for this program was not as simple as submitting an application. It meant also submitting a letter of resignation to the company that I have worked for these past 4 years. It meant exiting my comfort zone, embracing financial uncertainly and no longer classifying my blog as just a hobby. But I know that an education in any field is something to value and I will never regret enrolling in this culinary program. I plan to work hard, to study, to volunteer with extracurricular activities and to master the techniques that we are taught. I plan to make mistakes, to use my strengths to strengthen my weaknesses and not to take one minute of this opportunity for granted.

I wasn’t expecting to find myself here at 28 years of age, but I feel that I’m travelling in the right direction. Like anything else in life, I believe it is important to walk before we run. And for me, right now, that means picking up a knife before I pick up a pen.

The Professional Culinary Arts Diploma at the Northwest Culinary Academy of Vancouver is my next step. I’m sure of it.


  1. Karen Mortison
    November 21, 2014

    Very well said. You are 100% supported!!
    Looking forward to following you on this adventure.

    • emily
      November 23, 2014

      Thanks, Karen. The support is so very much appreciated! xo! …

  2. Nadine
    November 22, 2014

    Well written, Emily. So excited for your next piggy adventure!

  3. Iris
    November 29, 2014

    Very well-written and inspiring. Thanks for sharing! You will be very successful in the new path you have chosen…


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