Well, its been a while since I posted. As part of the curriculum at the Culinary Institute of America you are required to complete an 18-week externship. Over the summer, I interned in the pastry kitchen at Jean Georges in New York City. In those few weeks, I saw and learned so much that I asked to extern there and was accepted.
I returned to school and before I knew it, I was taking my second term practical. Then I was into my last block of classes, individual and production pastries, then packing my car to the exploding point to make the drive home, and finally returning to the city to begin my externship.
I’m now into week eight of my externship. I survived the holiday season, after starting my externship a week prior to Thanksgiving. Honestly, it’s extremely hard work, but I wouldn’t want it any other way. As an extern, I get to help with production for components of the desserts featured in Jean Georges, Nougatine at Jean Georges, as well as some of the room service items for the Trump International Hotel and Tower where we are located. Since New Years is now over, production has dropped down slightly because it is not quite as busy. However, there is still plenty to do, and it gives me the opportunity to learn how to make some components I have not yet attempted.
When it comes down to it, an externship is a job, albeit a temporary one. Like many jobs, you have good and bad days. The best thing to do is to ask lots of questions, verify you have the information correct, and keep putting yourself out there. This has taken me a while to do because I was so afraid of failing, but failure is part of the learning process. If I want to be the best I can be, some failures will have to come. At this point, I feel I have started to improve. I can move a bit faster and am better at thinking about what I will do or can work on as one thing is going. Each small step up is a small victory. Before I know it, these 18 weeks will be over, and I am eager to take in all I can until then!