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Brigade MKE offers Milwaukee youth first-hand experience in restaurant industry

New program hopes to bridge the gap between Milwaukee’s youth and the local workforce
Brigade MKE
Posted at 11:32 AM, Mar 14, 2022
and last updated 2022-03-14 14:54:53-04

MILWAUKEE — A new culinary arts and hospitality program hopes to offer Milwaukee teens and young adults the chance to learn new skills and find their place in the restaurant industry.

Created by Certified Master Chef Daryl Shular, the first minority certified master chef in the United States, Brigade MKE hopes to bridge the gap between Milwaukee’s youth and the local workforce.

“Students love to be tested and tested in a way to where they can have that instant success right out the gate. And so, what greater opportunity than being a part of this Brigade MKE program here in Milwaukee, than allowing our students to work with some of the best chefs in the world to get exposure to what this industry can provide them and give them a pathway to do great things in the industry,” said Shular.

In a partnership between Prism EDC, a non-profit focused on creating economic growth in the Sherman Park neighborhood, and Atlanta’s Shular Institute, students get first-hand training in a state-of-the-art kitchen and one-on-one real world experience in restaurants across Milwaukee.

Through its two learning tracks, the apprenticeship program or culinary certificate program, leaders say students can explore their interests and figure out what drives them.

“We're all born with visions and dreams. We just need somebody to come alongside of us and just empower us, equip us and along with us, remove the obstacles, but then get out of the way. And let that dream come to pass in the way that each individual was designed to express it,” said Bishop Walter Harvey, President Emeritus, Prism EDC.

For Sean Rush, who now lives in Atlanta, bringing the Shular Institute’s first satellite campus to his hometown is a dream come true.

Housed just steps from where he grew up, rush calls the project a passion purpose.

“Giving back is so purposeful to come here in a city that's in need of bridging the income inequality gap due to lack of education and training resources. So, Milwaukee is actually the birthplace of this great workforce development,” said Rush.

Any students ages 14 to 22 are encouraged to apply for the program, which is gearing up for its May culinary bootcamp.

For more information on how you can get involved, head here.

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