The Last Best Milkshake

I've discovered the best milkshake on earth, but I'm afraid you'll never have one. I could reveal all of the details – that it's real strawberry and frozen yogurt, made by Freshens – but it wouldn't matter.You still wouldn't be me, sitting in the cafeteria of George Washington University Hospital, just after your mother came out of brain surgery.

People often associate events or periods in their life with certain foods. Home cooks and professional chefs spend great effort trying to recreate grandma's roast chicken or mama's ravioli. Not only are the dishes delicious, but they conjure fond sentiments and memories. There's much attention given to these nostalgic meals (just look at how Anton Ego is converted in Ratatouille). But what is rarely mentioned are ordinary foods that are made remarkable by experience.Such meals are wonderful in the way soggy airport pizza is wonderful after you've been flying for hours, subsisting on peanuts.

This milkshake falls into that category of amazing, ordinary food. On another day it would just be a milkshake, albeit a pretty good one. But under the circumstances, it was the best milkshake of my life. After weeks of excruciating headaches, my normally healthy mother had a brain aneurysm removed. It could have proved fatal if left to grow. I've been extremely fortunate to have a full-time mom who is always my first call for advice, help or just wonderful company. She is my mom, my dearest friend and the constant in my life. The prospect of losing her to either a serious affliction or serious surgery was terrifying. But she has a tough will for someone so sweet, and made it through. Although the future held more tests and treatments, the present seemed stable for the first time in days. The milkshake was sweet, and cold, and perfect.

These extra-ordinary food moments are rare, and I've only experienced a handful. I was eating a Thomas' cinnamon raisin bagel when the news came that I got in early-admission to Middlebury College. No bagel, not even the fresh ones from H&H on 80th, has tasted as wonderful since. Rosemary Chicken Lean Cuisines were divine for a time, only because I was working my first kitchen job in St. John. I'd come home blissfully happy and exhausted, with just enough energy to unwrap and microwave. And then there was a slimy, monstrous Carnegie Deli corned beef sandwich that I remember fondly. It was 3 am, I was 20 and completely in love with a boy and New York for the first time.

And now there's this milkshake. It was like a great book – I was sorry to finish it. But unlike my mother's salad dressing (which I still can't replicate), I'm happy to never eat it again. I pray the restless hours in hospitals – even ones that can turn sick patients healthy and average milkshakes extraordinary – are over.

Featured Culinary Schools

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5 Program(s) Found
  • Alumni have appeared in reality competition shows such as Top Chef and Project Runway.
  • Has a team of about 4,000 faculty members focused on helping students tap opportunities in a marketplace driven by ideas.
  • Offers programs in design, media arts, fashion, and culinary.
  • Provides program coordinators who work with students to ensure they have the learning materials, assignments, facilities, and faculty to get the most out of the program.
  • Over 50 campus locations nationwide.
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Good for Working Adults
  • Flexible Scheduling
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5 Program(s) Found
Le Cordon Bleu Schools of North America , Online (campus option available)
  • Its first location, in Paris, officially opened its doors as a culinary school in 1895.
  • Teaches students by having them spend significant time in the kitchen practicing precision techniques.
  • Provide hands-on training from instructors who are certified, master chefs.
  • Offer flexible schedules and online programs.
  • Has 30 schools worldwide, spanning 5 continents, including 17 campuses in the U.S.
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Good for Working Adults
  • Online Courses
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1 Program(s) Found
  • Provides students the opportunity to train at home in their spare time to get their high school diploma, train for a new career, or enhance current skills.
  • Offers programs in psychology/social work, business management, medical billing, criminal justice, and more.
  • Member of the United States Distance Learning Association (USDLA), the Canadian Network for Innovation in Education (CNIE), and the International Council for Open and Distance Education (ICDE).
  • Features a fully flexible schedule with no classes to attend, leaving the study pace up to the student.
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  • Online Courses
1 Program(s) Found
  • Offers more than 150 self-paced, career-relevant programs that are connected to a supportive 24/7 online community of students and faculty.
  • Profiled in many publications such as The Boston Globe, Fox Business, and  Inside Higher Ed.
  • Nearly 25,000 graduates each year.
  • Accredited by the Distance Education Accrediting Commission (DEAC).
  • Founded in 1890 in Scranton, Pennsylvania    
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  • Online Courses
  • Founded in Southern California in 1998 by dog training expert Steven Appelbaum.
  • The largest independent dog training company in the United States.
  • Offers 11-stage programs that feature an in-home study component along with a hands-on training module.
  • A member of the MyCAA Financial Assistance program, which offers eligible military spouses up to $4,000 of tuition assistance that can be used towards any of their courses.
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  • Ranked #11 in the 2015 Best Graduate Schools in Social Work by U.S. News & World Report.
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  • The first elite researching university to offer a Master of Social Work degree online.
  • Has 4,000 field internship opportunities that give students real-world experience.
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  • Students can complete an entry-level technician program in about a year, and manufacturer training and graduate in as little as 18 months.
  • Provides technical education training programs for automotive, diesel, collision repair, motorcycle, and marine technicians.
  • Partners with many well-known manufacturers, including General Motors, Porsche Cars North America Inc., and BMW of North America LLC.
  • Offers internships to students and alumni for first-hand experience.
  • Accredited by the Accrediting Commission of Career Schools and Colleges (ACCSC).
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  • Financial Aid
  • Ranked 33rd among the Best Grad Schools for Social Work in 2015 by U.S. News and World Report.
  • Founded in 1904 as the nation’s first institute of higher learning to offer training for clinical social workers.
  • Provides a rigorous education, including a nationally accredited Master of Social Work (MSW) Program and PhD in Social Work.  
  • Offers inventive programs with hands-on experience.  
  • Incorporates social justice values and multicultural perspectives into curriculum. 
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  • Online Courses
  • Ranked among the Best National Universities in 2015 by U.S. News & World Report.
  • Designated as a 2014 Military Friendly School by Victory Media.
  • Houses one of the largest library systems in the Pacific Northwest, with 3 libraries on the Pullman campus and a library at each regional campus.
  • Accredited by the Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities (NWCCU).
  • Has 5 Washington campuses in Pullman, Spokane, Tri-Cities, Vancouver, and Everett.
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NCP College of Nursing , South San Francisco

NCP is a California State approved College of Nursing that serves the San Francisco Bay Area. Our nursing programs are attended by many students from nearby of San Francisco, Daly City, San Bruno, Pacifica, Millbrae, Brisbane, San Mateo, Burlingame, Hayward, San Leandro, Oakland, Emeryville, Berkeley, Castro Valley, Union City, Fremont, Concord and San Jose.

  • Offers several scholarship opportunities for students who qualify.
  • Laptop computers are issued to each student at the beginning of their program.
  • Provides programs in health care, business, information technology, and graphic arts.
  • Respiratory Therapy program is accredited by the Commission on Accreditation for Respiratory Care (CoARC).
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Good for Working Adults
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  • Flexible Scheduling
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Kaplan College - KHE , Palm Springs
  • Some campuses host low-cost medical and dental clinics, where students can get real-world experience.
  • Designated as 2015 Military Friendly School by Victory Media.
  • Approved A+ rating from the Better Business Bureau (BBB) since 1976.
  • Campus-specific accreditation from the Accrediting Council for Independent Colleges and Schools (ACICS), Accrediting Commission of Career Schools and Colleges (ACCSC), and the Council on Occupational Education (COE).
  • 16 campus locations across the United States.
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  • Ranked among the Best National Universities in 2014 & 2015 by U.S. News & World Report.
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  • Has over 240,000 alumni on record, including Joseph Biden, Stephen Crane, Dick Clark, and Joyce Carol Oates.
  • Offers study abroad programs in several countries all over the world.
  • Has achieved accreditation from the Middle States Commission on Higher Education (MSCHE).
  • Its main campus is located in Syracuse, New York, with extended campuses in a number of major metro cities including Washington, D.C., Los Angeles, New York City, and more.
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Good for Working Adults
  • Accredited
  • Online Courses
  • Flexible Scheduling
  • Accelerated Programs
  • Financial Aid
  • Transferable Credits
  • Designated as a 2015 Military Friendly School by Victory Media.
  • Scholarship and financial aid opportunities are available for students who qualify.
  • Offers programs in film, game production & design, animation & VFX, music production, and more.
  • Features several on-campus facilities, including recording studios, sound stages, threatres, and more.
  • Accredited by the Accrediting Commission of Career Schools and Colleges (ACCSC).
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  • Financial Aid
  • Has students attend one four-week class at a time and take their final exam before moving on to their next class.
  • Offers 24/7 online tech support, with a typical response time of 4 hours or less.
  • Has online help centers that offer assistance with writing, statistics, medical assisting, and more.
  • Provides job placement assistance to all its students and alumni.
  • Researches trends for growing fields to tailor a more effective curriculum.
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Good for Working Adults
  • Accredited
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  • Flexible Scheduling
  • Financial Aid
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