Community Kitchen Academy graduated its second Barre class on Friday, February 21, 2014 at the Old Labor Hall.  Community Kitchen Academy (CKA) has been in operation since 2009, first in partnership with the Chittenden Emergency Food Shelf in Burlington, VT and now also with Central Vermont Community Action Council in Barre, VT.  CKA has graduated more than 100 students, producing and distributing nearly 160,000 servings of food since 2009.

Six students graduated with this class, and we would like to heartily congratulate them:

  • Kristin Hall
  • Erik Norkeveck
  • Lisa Laboy
  • Kimberly Lee
  • Catherine Perkins
  • Wendy Viola

Photos of the graduation ceremony here:

Community Kitchen Academy (CKA) prepares underemployed and unemployed Vermonters for a career in the food service industry and lifelong learning through an intensive program of culinary skills development, career readiness and job placement. Upon graduation, students are well positioned to obtain a job in the food service industry and are ServSafe certified, a recognized food service industry standard. They develop valuable life and professional skills through the program including goal establishment, résumé writing, interviewing skills, conflict management and budgeting.  Additionally, CKA graduates can receive nine college-level academic transfer credits from the Vermont State College of External Programs.

Susan Reid, King Arthur Flour Baker and the graduation keynote speaker, spoke to the graduates about the additional ingredients for success they’ll need in the kitchens they’ll soon be working in.  You can read an excerpt of her graduation speech here.  Reid grew up in New Jersey, graduated from Bates College and the Culinary Institute of America, and is presently enjoying her fourth career after stints in advertising, running restaurants, and teaching at the New England Culinary Institute. She joined King Arthur in 2002 to help test recipes for The Baker’s Companion, and has since coauthored the subsequent King Arthur books while writing and editing The Baking Sheet. Susan also blogs, teaches Traveling Baking Demos, and answers baking (and cooking) questions from all quarters.

Prospective Students

Both sites, Burlington and Barre, are accepting applications for the next class of CKA.  Click here to learn more about Community Kitchen Academy.


The hands-on instruction and college level academic work required of CKA graduates makes them ideal candidates for positions in the culinary industry. Click here to learn more about hiring CKA graduates.


Community Kitchen Academy is made possible through the generous support of Jane’s Trust, Richard and Deborah Tarrant Foundation, General Dynamics and Hunger Mountain Coop.  Your contributions also make this program possible.  Please consider giving to the Vermont Foodbank today.