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George Johnston, Russell Hamm, James Jacobs, and Kay Trinkle
Delgado Community College (DCC) was the first, and for a number of years the only, community college in the state of Louisiana. The college began operating in 1921 as a vocational education school specializing in the manual arts. It became a technical college in the late 1950s, granting its first college degree in 1960. The name was changed to Delgado Junior College in 1966, and in 1970 control was transferred from the city of New Orleans to the Louisiana State Board of Education. It now services five parishes or counties with a population of approximately 1.5 million people. In addition to the college's primary service area, it accepts students statewide. Out-of-district students pay only the local tuition rates. The college is accredited by the Commission of Colleges of the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools, the American Culinary Federation Education Institute (ACFEI), the Council on Medical Education, and the American Medical Association. The college offers approximately sixty programs with either a certificate or degree or both.
With the exception of tuition (which is controlled by a state-level board), all funding for the college is controlled by direct appropriation from the state legislature which amounts to 57% of the college's budget. The college is under a joint higher education board, upon which the former President of DCC serves. All appropriations come from this state board. The major employers within the district are largely military offices and installations, governmental offices, and a variety of higher education institutions. New Orleans, as a general metropolitan region, has a struggling economy and is not experiencing economic growth. The college is committed to assisting with economic development.
Student enrollment at the institution continues to grow and is projected to exceed 30,000 students soon. The current full-time enrollment is reported to be 23,640 students which indicates a very large number of individuals attending as full-time students. The majority of these students are in the college transfer section of the institution. While the college is located in New Orleans (and directly adjacent to the Vocational Technical Center for the school system), it draws less than 5% of the graduating class from the New Orleans Public Schools. Far more students come from private schools and suburban public schools. In addition, the average age of the students continues to rise as more adults enter the market in search of a college education. Louisiana has a very low number of residents who have attended college (16%); therefore, there is a lot of interest in attending the college among adults. Within New Orleans Parish, about 60% of the population is African- American. Forty-two percent of the student body has been identified as minority (32% African-American, 6% Hispanic, 3% Asian, 2% Native-American). Twenty-eight percent of the students receive Pell grants (see Table A-8).
|Enrollment and Student Demographics||Incidence|
|Institution's total head count enrollment||29,546|
|Institution's FTE enrollment||23,640|
|Percent of total student population receiving Pell grants||28%|
|Average age of the institution's entire student population||28|
Approximately 28% of the students at DCC are enrolled in occupational-technical curriculum areas and about 10% of these are involved in some form of work-based learning program. Nearly half (48%) of the total student body is enrolled in transfer curriculum areas and another 15% are taking developmental/basic studies. The largest occupational programs at the college are child care and development (400 students) and law enforcement and corrections (300 students). Both of these programs have a work-based learning component.
The Radiologic Technology Program
The Radiologic Technology (RAD) Program is a two-year program that prepares students to enter the health-care field as certified radiologic technicians. The program is described as a "26 month full-time Associate of Science program." Upon program completion, students will have had experience in X-ray, ultrasound, CT Scan, Magnetic Resonance Imaging, and nuclear imaging. The program is broad and comprehensive, and students appear to receive more training on more equipment than in typical two-year college programs. The unusual length of the program, which is 97 semester credit hours (of which 21 hours are general studies), allows for this comprehensiveness. A typical two-year college RAD Program is usually in the 60-65 credit hour range. Due to the limit placed on enrollment, which is currently set at 55 students annually, most students take all of their general education and non-RAD courses prior to beginning the technical courses or prior to entering the program. Students probably spend at least four years completing this program and much of that may be full-time. All students are assessed for basic skills and those who require remediation must add time to the total program which includes 2,400 hours of clinical experience in one of thirteen affiliate hospitals.
The technical portion of the program, the RAD courses, are conducted largely on-site in a clinical model. Prior to clinical assignment, students spend six weeks on campus in an orientation experience that prepares them for entry into the hospital environment. This course includes hospital culture, laboratory process/procedure, medical ethics, regulations and applied law, radiation protection, basic work ethics, hospital structure and administration, teamwork, and patient care techniques. Once in the hospital, students spend approximately 40 hours a week in the clinic. Courses are normally scheduled to permit students to pursue classroom activity in four-hour blocks and clinical experience in either 4- or 8-hour periods.
The relationship between the college and the hospital is defined by a formal affiliation agreement that defines such areas as purpose, general provisions (understandings), student management, and insurance. The relationship between the college and the clinical sites is maintained primarily throughout the routine activities of the college's clinical instructors and the Program Director.
The program is under the auspices of an advisory committee composed of professionals who are employed in local primary health-care facilities. The program appears to be well-known among higher-level college administration because it began over 20 years ago and was one of the original flagship programs of the college. The former Program Director is now Dean of Allied Health and he was a close friend of the former President. Both he and the present Program Director claim the program continues to receive a high level of support from the current President. Over the years, the program has placed enough students into the various health-care institutions within the community to ensure its strong reputation. It is believed that some of the liberal arts faculty, especially those that teach in math and the sciences, are knowledgeable about the program.
In the past few years, all students who have completed the program have passed the state license test and have been placed in jobs. State program goals include the following:
A major reason for starting the program was the belief that hospitals would begin to use this program as opposed to training their own staff. When the program was launched, at least two of the hospitals had major training programs for x-ray technicians. These programs took students, primarily from high school, and developed their technical abilities so they could operate the equipment in an x-ray department of a hospital. None of these technicians, however, had any college-related instruction. According to the Allied Health Director, the hospitals resisted the new program at the college at first, but as the costs of training their own x-ray technicians rose, the benefit of having college-trained radiologic technicians increased. It was then that area hospitals turned to the college allied health programs. All but one hospital in the city have shut down their programs; they now rely solely on DCC for RAD Program graduates.
The RAD Program not only operates within DCC's statement of values and purpose, it also fits two of the area hospitals' main objectives. First, it reduces their recruitment and training costs. A program administrator told us that the average recruiting cost for a "rad-tech" job was $24,000. By having a well-structured program, these costs are shifted from the hospital to the school system. The actual work done by the students in the hospital during their clinical experience does save the hospital labor costs because advanced students perform work on patients. Second, the hospitals are able to increase the professionalism of their staff by using the community college. The process of getting into the program, coupled with the difficult process of completing the program, ensures that only the most competent students complete.
Over 500 students apply for this program from a "declared-major" pool of about 1,250, with only about 55 admitted annually via a long and very difficult selection process (see Table A-9). The tendency is to refuse students' first-time admission and then admit them after the second or third application. Once accepted to the clinical part of the program, few students fail. Although no data was offered, all administrative staff believe that the average age of the applicants was rising to the upper 20s from the current average of 25. A smaller percentage of the students enrolled in the program are non-white (primarily African-American) in relation to the college as a whole; 36% was reported minority for the program as compared to 42% for the college. No specific initiative was reported to select minority students for the program, although we were concerned that special needs students might not be getting sufficient support to stay in the program.
|Enrollment and Student Demographics||Incidence|
|Total number of students enrolled in the program||55 admitted annually|
|Percent of students receiving Pell grants||29%|
|Average age of students||25|
|Graduation rate for students||4%|
Five instructors teach in the program; one is a minority and all are female. They are recruited from the field. All had real work experience before teaching at DCC. They tend to divide into two groups: the classroom instructors and the clinical instructors. All are highly motivated professionally, attending sponsored conferences (often with their own resources), and reflecting a positive image of the field. They represent a very strong professional commitment and pride in their association with the program and with Delgado Community College.
Administrators are knowledgeable both about the program and the trends in
radiologic technology in the area, and they participate in staff development to
keep themselves knowledgeable. They possess very good information concerning
the job market for their students, and they are prepared to downsize the
program as well as seek new clinical sites to meet programmatic needs. The
current Dean of Allied Health was the former director of the RAD Program and is
extremely supportive and proud of it.
High-level administrators take pride in the program because of its size and ability to win resources from local industry and the state.
Employers (primarily of the 13-affiliated hospitals) appear very committed to helping the program continue and succeed. However, they are concerned there will be fewer jobs available in the area and expect a downsizing of the program. They support the construction of a new Allied Health facility that will be housed closer to a large medical complex. One of the hospital centers has also underwritten the salaries of three teaching staff, and some of the hospitals outside of New Orleans are paying a specific amount of money to the college for running programs on their site.
School-Based Learning Component
The program is based on a typical health-care clinical model. Students are admitted to the program with specific science prerequisites (two semesters of general biology) and they must have a cumulative grade point average above a 2.0 (out of 4.0). Normally, however, applicants have accumulated more community-college credit hours than required. The general education courses include two semesters of human anatomy and physiology (with lab), two semesters of English composition, two semesters of math, one semester each of physics, general psychology, and a humanities. The program, as described in the college catalog, is designed to take five semesters plus two summer sessions. The physics course is designed specifically for this program.
Work-Based Learning Component
The program is heavily supported by affiliated hospitals. It is estimated that the 13 affiliated hospitals contribute approximately $200,000 worth of services and supplies annually. Students are welcomed and well-treated, as are college faculty and administrators. The program includes 2,400 hours of clinical experience in one of these affiliated hospitals. Once in the hospital, students are expected to work approximately 40 hours a week, unpaid for two years. The students are expected to master very clear competencies which are listed in a book that is signed by qualified hospital personnel when the student has successfully completed a procedure. In so doing, the private sector is certifying that the student has the competency to conduct these practices. All students appear to know the competencies they are expected to perform. At the end of the program, the students graduate and receive a degree, but must pass a state test in order to obtain a license. All students (100%) from the program have been successful in the completion of this test, and from our observation of second-year students about to graduate and take the test, they appear confident that the education they have received will enable them to be successful.
The students interviewed are very clear about the advantage of their program versus the internal hospital training of radiologic technologists. They state that their college education is giving them tools to understand the theoretical technology of their field as opposed to simply providing machine operating skills. They possess a clear sense of the value of the program and feel informed of all of the expectations they were to meet. They believe the program to be both difficult and demanding of time but worthy of the effort. They also believe that they had influence in the operation of the program and cited an example of a change in activities that permitted them more time in an area of the hospital where they wanted more experience. They report interaction with the college instructor about once every ten days or more. They feel they received all of the information required to be successful even though much of that information comes to them from the hospital-paid employee called the clinical supervisor and not a member of the DCC staff. Students report being recruited into the program by other students and by hospital staff whom they knew, in other words, by word of mouth. They also report that they were not recruited "very much" by college promotional activities and brochures. Students express two major concerns: (1) they believe that the time spent in the clinical phase should be a paid experience given the long time spent working, and (2) that the entire program was simply too long. Furthermore, students are generally not satisfied with the counseling they received when they chose the RAD Program, although they are generally very satisfied with the program.
A related connecting component is the clarity of the admissions process. All applicants are considered by a committee, and through the extraordinary talents of one counselor, all potential applicants know their standing throughout the process. Consequently, the process has integrity and, although few are selected, students make few complaints when they do not make it into the program. To accomplish this efficient flow of information, especially concerning the standing of each individual student, a full-time counselor is assigned to the Allied Health Division. She is assisted by faculty when needed.
Since the program has provided many graduates presently within the hospitals, there is an "informal" network which helps to ensure students make it through. Many of the workplace instructors and hospital administrators came from the program. Thus, the program has a "halo" effect upon the students. They are continually told that, if they work hard, they will graduate and get good jobs and that is, in effect, exactly what happens. As a consequence, the program operates as a self-reliant, closed system with its own support staff, recruiters, and contacts within the employer community.
The partnership between area hospitals and the college is mutually beneficial. From the hospitals' perspective, the program provides them with entry-level workers for their departments. From the college's perspective, the program provides a means of recruiting a large number of students into a highly selective, costly allied-health program. The real test of the commitment of the partners to the program will come when downsizing begins because of the lack of demand for new positions. Can the Program Director either find new work-based learning slots or begin to consciously "ramp-down" the program? Our interviews with the counselors indicate that this question is already being answered. The response is that there will be fewer slots available in the program and students presently in the program were aware of this development.
There are two features to the program from which others may learn. First, in the development of counseling and other support services, the college has instituted specific counselors for the program that continue to monitor and give feedback to students who are attempting to enter the program, ensuring that the selection process looks legitimate to the students. It also sends out positive guidelines for those who wish to continue trying to enter the program. A second important feature is the specific tasks that are given to the hospital personnel in the process of making sure that the students know their assignments. There are clear instructions to the staff and expectations that they will perform in the learning process. This leads to the on-site experience being a valuable learning experience. These two features have evolved over a long period of time which gives the program stability.
Another key aspect of the program is its existence as an entire system, from student application process to work and graduation. This system exists within the college structure, but has its own autonomy, objectives, and shared values. In large part, the staff of the program have developed over the years and perfected their operations. All of the staff are very mission-driven in the operation of the program. It is also a program that is not necessarily supported by large amounts of revenue and, thus, from a fiscal sense, is much more cost effective for the institution to operate. However, given the macro goals of the institution, there may be some conflicting issues of mission. Since an important goal of the new President is to improve educational retention and completion rates among minority students, this program should be targeted to admit more minority and special needs students. The present selection process appears biased against these students, and the staff, while admitting this is a problem, has not addressed this concern.
In a related area, the backlog of students (more than 1,200) waiting to enter the program seems excessive and it seems reasonable to assume that many students will never get into the program. The college administration is aware of this problem and is seeking ways to address it. Counselors now urge students to "cover a double track," that is, fulfill the basic requirements in more than one Allied Health plan so that if they cannot get into the RAD Program, they have other options. There is a "regrets period" when all applicants can come in for a review to see why they have not been selected, and what they can do to enhance their applications the next time. Normally, if a student applies three times and is unsuccessful, they are not encouraged to apply again. For those admitted, the program is extremely demanding. It requires more than 90 hours of credit, two years of work (40 hours per week) for no pay, and summer school. Most of the students interviewed are also working regular paying jobs as well as doing their clinical and classroom work. They complained that the program was very long, straining their abilities to hold down a job and go to school at the same time.
Finally, taking into consideration its many strengths and weaknesses, this program occupies an important niche within the area health-care community. Over the years it has developed two very important subsystems: (1) a selection system that is regarded by students as legitimate, and (2) a work-based learning system that is developed and maintained by employers, primarily at their expense. In a sense, what has been replicated is the master-journey person structure of the floor of the hospital. The first-year students perform activities in the hospital under the supervision of full-time employees. In the second year, students are required to achieve on-the-job competencies and perform independently. Formal written agreements spell out the requirements for both the college and the employer. What surrounds the entire system is a set of beliefs held by all the stakeholders that the program is excellent and it is a privilege to be part of the system.
The Culinary Arts Apprenticeship Program
The Culinary Arts Apprenticeship Program is housed on the City Park Campus, part of the original complex, and is administered under the Department of Arts and Humanities. The Culinary Apprenticeship Program was organized by Les Chefs de Cuisine de La Louisianne, a local chapter of the American Culinary Federation (ACF), in cooperation with the Board of Trustees of the Culinary Apprenticeship Programs of Louisiana, an organization of twelve hospitality industry associations in Southern Louisiana. The program follows the tradition of European culinary apprenticeship programs by providing students practical work experience under the supervision of executive chefs in hotels and restaurants in metropolitan New Orleans. According to the Culinary Arts Apprenticeship Program Guide, "the purpose of the program is to provide trained professional cooks and potential chefs for the culinary industry. The Culinary Arts Apprenticeship Program at Delgado is nationally accredited by the American Culinary Federation."
On-site facilities include a large commercial kitchen area, two dedicated classrooms, and a suite of offices which the local chapter of ACF helped to furnish. The college budget in 1993 for culinary arts was $178,285 for salaries and benefits, $194,961 for supplies, and $25,000 for equipment. According to the Program Director, the cost for the program comes to approximately $3,500 per student per year. The primary sources of funds are tuition from the students and state reimbursement. Approximately one-third of the operating revenues come from tuition and two-thirds come from the state via a state formula for revenue sharing. A small portion of the budget in the past has come from external funding through other smaller grants such as the federal Perkins vocational education funds for equipment in the faculty dining area, ACF local chapters for the library, and donations of product and time by local purveyors.
Tuition is approximately $500 per semester, plus $30 lab fees and a $5 student government association fee. The students pay $30 annually to the Chef's Association and a one-time $80 registration fee to the ACFEI (which includes log book and training manuals). The cost of books varies, but it would appear the standard texts are the restaurant series published by Wiley for the National Restaurant Association which cost approximately $50 per course per semester. Students are required to furnish their own chef's uniforms, including one chef's dress jacket, chef's black and white checkered pants, one neckerchief, and one chef's hat. Students are also expected to furnish their own knives. Sometimes uniforms are provided by the sponsoring institution where the student is working.
According to the 1993 Annual Report to ACFEI, beginning in the Fall of 1993, the latest year for which complete data is available, 55 new students were accepted, 73 were reported as returning, and 10 had dropped. Reasons listed for dropping varied, the most common being an instructor initiated withdrawal for failure to attend classes. Approximately 50 to 60 students are admitted each fall to the three-year program. As of Fall 1994, there were 187 students currently enrolled (see Table A-10). About 25% of the students are African-American which is slightly less than the college as a whole (32%). The average age of the students in the program is roughly the same as the college as a whole, that is, 28. Fewer students use Pell grants (19%) than for the college as a whole (28%). Perhaps this is because at least some of the students in the program currently hold bachelor's degrees and are not eligible for Pell grant assistance. A 0% graduation rate is misleading because the program has been recently revised and no students have completed the three-year sequence.
According to the Program Director, students are placed at virtually a 100% rate. However, a distinction must be made between a completer and a graduate as it appears that not all students complete the required general education core. Because the program was recently significantly revised, it was not possible to get meaningful data on completion rates. A related concern expressed by the faculty had to do with employers hiring students before they had completed the program. A number of the employers came from the European tradition of chef training which does not include a college component and therefore the executive chefs have not always bought into the fact that it might be in the best interest of the students to complete their degrees. Once the students have mastered the "holy trinity" (gumbo, jambalaya, and etoufee as well as red beans and rice), they can effectively be employed anywhere in the region.
|Enrollment and Student Demographics||Incidence|
|Total number of students enrolled in the program||187|
|Percent of students receiving Pell grants||19%|
|Average age of students||28|
|Graduation rate for students||Students not yet eligible|
to graduate from new program
The program was first implemented in 1982 with the direction of the local chef's organization, the Les Chefs de Cuisine de La Louisianne, particularly with the help of chefs and restaurant owners of the famous French Quarter. There are four full-time staff members (3 certified by the ACF and 1 certifiable) and six part-time faculty. Certifiable in this context means that the instructor has completed the requirements for certification, but is not certified at this time by the ACF. The Department Coordinator is a certified culinary educator and lifelong New Orleans resident. She currently serves as secretary to the local ACF Chapter. One of the faculty members, a certified executive chef, is also President of the local ACF chapter. Two of the full-time faculty are new in their positions though they had previously taught at DCC in a part-time capacity. Other stakeholders include a number of fine-dining establishments and major hotels in the New Orleans area, including mass quantity food preparers such as hospitals.
School-Based Learning Component
Approximately 200 students each year request applications for the program. Applicants must be 18 years of age and be eligible for college-level work as determined by the DCC placement exam. This examination is administered by a college counselor and consists of evaluations of reading, composition, and mathematics. Students who score sufficiently high on the ACT (20 in English and 20/21 in mathematics-enhanced) are exempted from the exam as are students who can demonstrate that they have completed appropriate coursework at an accredited institution of higher education. The college is moving towards the ASSET, a nationally normed entrance exam. The scores for the ASSET test are currently being established for each of the college's programs. If students' scores indicate they are college ready, they are interviewed by the Executive Director of the program and several of the chefs from the local hospitality industry. Approximately 75 students of the initial 200 applicants are invited to participate in the following fall program. About 55 of those actually enroll and appear on the first day of class. At one point, students could enter the program in either fall or winter. Under the current program, it was decided that students would only begin in the fall.
All four of the first-year students interviewed had already completed a bachelor's degree or higher. It is presumed that these students did not have to take the general education core which consists of the following requirements:
Students must be college-ready before they are admitted into the program. General education courses are taught in the summers, three courses per term. There is current discussion about requiring some form of computer literacy. An attempt was made in the past to develop a mathematics course focused on food preparation, and applications of mathematics and biology are demonstrated in the classroom. Students are expected to be familiar with library research. In one case, we observed students presenting impromptu speeches of three to five minutes in length on topics they had researched in the library such as microbiological hazards related to food preparation.
Students take eight to ten hours of class each week, meeting one day a week at the campus, while still being responsible for their 40-hour work schedule. Students are expected to master the following technical competencies:
On-site classes involve both lecture and laboratory methodologies. Local purveyors complement the normal teaching staff by providing demonstrations for the students.
Work-Based Learning Component
Students enrolled in the Culinary Arts Apprenticeship Program are required to complete 6,000 hours of on-the-job training at an approved site under the supervision of an Executive Chef and also complete 900 hours of related classroom instruction. Upon completion of the program, the student receives an AAS degree and is certified by the ACF as a certified Cook.
The students are also expected to find their own placement in one of the approved local sites. A job board is provided to assist students who are not already placed. Sites are regularly visited by the Executive Director to ensure that students are being provided the appropriate instruction in a variety of jobs. The first 500 hours of the program are considered to be probationary.
Students are paid to work at a supervised work site of their choice for 40 or more hours a week. The college maintains a formal contract with the work site stipulating working conditions and salary. The salary ranges from $4.75 per hour for the first semester and goes up to a minimum of $6.25 per hour for the sixth semester. A number of the students in the program had work experience in the field before beginning the program, several at the sites where they are currently serving as apprentices.
Students are expected to rotate through a variety of jobs, applying the skills learned in the classroom with additional coaching and instruction from the supervising chef. The skills learned on the job and in the classroom are to be the basis for the formal assessment (performance based) required by the ACFEI and the BAT/DOL. In general, students are very complimentary of the support they received from the work site. As might be expected, however, not all students are completely satisfied. In several cases, students complained that they are not being rotated as they expected; others said they were being asked to perform tasks that conflicted with the ethical values preached in class, particularly with respect to health and sanitation.
Certification awarded includes an Associate Degree in Applied Science, a DOL certification, and ACFEI certification at the chef's level. The most common position taken after graduation is that of Sous (sauce) Chef/Lead Cook. According to graduation surveys, a realistic entry-level salary for a Sous Chef in a small restaurant is in the range of $16,000-$20,000. Data from our initial survey indicates that 35% of the employers are small companies with fewer than 100 employees, 40% are in the medium category (100-500 employees), and the remaining 25% are large companies (over 500).
Students are expected to keep a daily log of their activities, including what jobs they have been rotated through as well as pictures of creations and recipes. The log describes different kitchen activities and is used to maintain recipes, files, and photographs or drawings of culinary displays. This log book is a requirement of the ACFEI for certification. The log is reviewed on a regular basis by the supervising chef and also by the Department Coordinator and it must be signed by both. The credentials that the students receive upon completion of the program are recognized not only nationally, but internationally.
The formal program of career awareness and orientation seemed to rely heavily on the first 500 hours of training that were done on campus as part of the fully equipped kitchen available to the students. Lunches for the faculty and guests are regularly prepared on a break-even basis by the first-year students who work under the direct supervision of the Executive Chef.
The primary means of recruitment is through word of mouth. The college provides written materials and attends trade shows regularly to raise the awareness of the program's existence. The student survey response indicated that more than half of the students heard about the program by means other than formal recruitment by the college.
Part of the uniqueness of this program lies in its location. New Orleans Cajun-style cooking is world famous. Food, its preparation and consumption, is very much a part of the local culture. According to DCC's President, even the local residents eat out several nights a week. Culinary arts are an important aspect of local economic development and there is a firm commitment to the program at the senior administrative level. Strong support among local business partners is also evident.
The 6,000-hour requirement entails a significant commitment by the students. The academic faculty is concerned that students are working at the expense of their academic classes. Putting the core requirements during summer classes may be an effective compromise. However, such concerns may be moot if a significant number of students continue to start the program already possessing a bachelor's degree. On the other hand, it is obvious from a number of interviews of both the Culinary Arts faculty and the working chefs, that the nature of the job includes long hours and hot kitchens. Knowing that, the program may create realistic expectations for students regarding the demands of their chosen career.
Time becomes an issue for the Culinary Arts faculty, but from a different perspective. The salaries paid to college faculty are substantially lower than their counterparts in the industry. If this continues over the long run, it is difficult to imagine that staff morale will be maintained. Yet, when asked why the faculty chose to teach, most replied that in addition to being able to contribute something to society and to the profession, teaching gave them more time to be with their families.
The resumés of the in-house faculty are regularly reviewed by AFCEI. A recent self-study by that organization indicated that the faculty had the preparation necessary to perform the tasks assigned, including preparation in business and association training activities. One of the difficulties indicated during interviews was getting supervisors away from work long enough to provide them with some of the training they needed in how to become more effective mentors. In a related area, we believe the AFCEI needs to take a stronger leadership role with respect to providing training materials for the supervising chefs. It should be possible for this to be done at a national level. The local chapter of ACF is not tightly organized and so its value as a partner seems questionable. However, the President of the local chapter is on the full-time staff and the secretary is the Department Coordinator.
A primary incentive to begin any work-based learning program is economic. Unfortunately, too little is known about the exact costs to a sponsoring organization to participate in this program. However, we do know there is a lack of incentive for students to take the work-based learning route since they can sit for the ACFEI exam after two years of on-the-job training. This can happen whether or not they have done any of the coursework associated with the program. One of the recommendations of the faculty to address this issue was for employers to provide some form of salary differential for those who have completed a work-based learning program.
Finally, we had some concerns about counseling as it applies to work-based learning programs. Because this is a concern that pervades many work-based learning programs, we raise the issue here. A sign posted just outside of a college counselor's office may be indicative of the absence of awareness of the value of work-based learning. It pictured four doors. The door on the far left was posh, ornate wood and brass. Under it was the caption, "college." Next to that picture was one of a plainer door. Still wood, but with a simple brass knob. Under this second picture were the words, "community college." The third door was a factory door, glass with a metal push bar. Under it were the words, "vocational training." The far right door was a revolving door. Below it were the words, "on-the-job training." Placing such a poster in a prominent place in the college sends a strong message that college programs are preeminent and work-related "training" programs are lower status. Yet, we understand this attitude is not limited to DCC but indicative of societal perceptions toward the value of a traditional college education in relationship to work. Understanding and changing these attitudes is at the heart of making work-based learning a viable approach to education.