John Crowe, a lecturer in Hospitality & Catering at North West Regional College was recently named the winner of a prestigious UK award, for his innovative teaching methods.
The Professional Association for Catering Education (PACE) recognised John’s novel approach to engaging with his catering students, through the use of computers in the College’s state-of-the-art training kitchens, and awarded him 1st prize in the Innovative Use of Technology category at the recent PACE Awards 2009.
John travelled to Towcester, Northamptonshire to collect his award at a gala ceremony, where he also accepted the 2nd place certificate on behalf of his colleague Luane Quigley, who was commended for an online project which allowed students to provide feedback to improve the quality of teaching and learning.
John and Luane were the only lecturers from Northern Ireland to feature in the PACE nominations and awards for innovation, which are open to Hospitality staff in Colleges and Schools across the UK.
The judges were impressed with how the College’s School of Hospitality and Catering is committed to introducing new methods of teaching on such practical programmes. The enhanced technology in use includes as a laptop tablet, where students can access a wide range of course information and materials, a photo station, which allows the students to photograph their dishes, then store or print the images and helps them build their portfolio. Others include kitchen camera and interactive white boards.
This award is another success for John, who spent time last year working under Gordon Ramsay in his Claridges restaurant, developing new skills that have since been passed onto his students. In addition, two of John’s trainees scooped bronze medals at the highly competitive Chef Ireland 2009 international WACS Salon Culinaire in Dublin in February.