Ig­nit­ing pas­sion

The Star Malaysia - Star2 - - HIGHER EDUCATION -

CALL it no­bil­ity or pas­sion for one’s pro­fes­sion, Tunku Ab­dul Rah­man Univer­sity Col­lege ( TAR Univer­sity Col­lege) chef- cumFac­ulty of So­cial Sci­ence, Arts and Hu­man­i­ties ( FSAH) lec­turer Lu­cas Liao Shing Jie could not have been more un­con­di­tional in chan­nelling his ex­per­tise to his stu­dents – Lim Xing Yi and Sern Lai Sheng, both from the Bach­e­lor of Hos­pi­tal­ity Man­age­ment ( Hons).

They took up the chal­lenge to par­tic­i­pate in the re­cent Culi­naire Malaysia “Malaysian Bat­tle of the Chefs” com­pe­ti­tion in the ice- carv­ing cat­e­gory con­ducted dur­ing the 13th Malaysian In­ter­na­tional Ex­hi­bi­tion of Food, Drinks, Ho­tel, Restau­rant and Food­ser­vice Equip­ment, Sup­plies, Ser­vices and Re­lated Tech­nol­ogy held from Sept 29 to Oct 2, 2015 in Kuala Lumpur.

Fu­elled partly by their own in­ter­est and also in­spired by Chef Lu­cas’s gas­tro­nomic skills that have clinched him many awards, th­ese two stu­dents, as well as Chef Lu­cas him­self won a bronze medal each for their highly cre­ative and artis­tic ef­fort in carv­ing ice sculp­tures at the event.

Chef Lu­cas has gar­nered many wins in his foray into culi­nary com­pe­ti­tions. Be­sides his re­cent award, his other wins in­clude a Bronze Award in the Flower, Fruits and Veg­etable Arts in Royal Flo­ria Pu­tra­jaya 2015; Bronze Medal in Ice Carv­ing in the 2013 At­lantic Chef Cup Asian Young Chef’s Knife Skills Com­pe­ti­tion in Tai­wan; Gold Medal­ist in Malaysia In­ter­na­tional Trop­i­cal Fruits 3D Plat­ter Com­pe­ti­tion or­gan­ised in con­junc­tion with the Fab­u­lous Food 1Malaysia Fes­ti­val in 2012 and 2013; Bronze Medal in the Mod­ern Western Cui­sine Restau­rant of the “Bat­tle of the Chefs” 2011 Pe­nang and First Run­ner- up in the Chef’s Gourmet Bat­tle Team Chal­lenge, Culi­naire Malaysia 2011.

This culi­nary extraordinaire has a wealth of knowl­edge and skill to share in the TAR Univer­sity Col­lege Hos­pi­tal­ity Man­age­ment pro­gramme.

It is one thing to teach a sub­ject, but quite an­other to win an award for putting one’s knowl­edge and skill into prac­tice. Not only did Chef Lu­cas do that, he also coached his stu­dents to win.

Af­ter months of tough and some­times over­whelm­ing train­ing, they man­aged to per­form and com­pete against the other par­tic­i­pants from Tai­wan and Malaysia to win not one but three bronze medals.

Hav­ing had a ca­reer in the hos­pi­tal­ity in­dus­try for ap­prox­i­mately 10 years, he be­lieves the sub­ject he teaches plays an im­por­tant role in Hos­pi­tal­ity Man­age­ment.

“I teach mainly on sub­jects that have to do with food, such as The­ory of Food and Food Prepa­ra­tion 1 and 2. Th­ese are sub­jects that in­spire stu­dents about food. Gas­tron­omy or in other words, food and drink, are cru­cial for sur­vival. Ad­di­tion­ally, gas­tron­omy has now in­no­vated, evolved and changed to cater to a niche mar­ket – it has be­come an art. One has to rein­vent the prepa­ra­tion of food in this in­dus­try. As such, ed­u­cat­ing and in­spir­ing stu­dents in cur­rent and dy­namic food trends and knowl­edge is what I strive to achieve.”

Be­sides be­ing taught by top- notch aca­demi­cians cum prac­ti­tion­ers, such as the award- win­ning Chef Lu­cas, TAR Univer­sity Col­lege stu­dents un­dergo an in­tern­ship pro­gramme dur­ing their se­mes­ter break.

This paves the way for them to un­der­stand and be ex­posed to new trends and ex­pec­ta­tions of the ever- dy­namic hos­pi­tal­ity in­dus­try. TAR Univer­sity Col­lege Hos­pi­tal­ity Man­age­ment stu­dents are there­fore highly sought af­ter for their knowl­edge and skills.

For de­tails about Hos­pi­tal­ity Man­age­ment and other pro­grammes of­fered by FSAH, visit the Kuala Lumpur Main Cam­pus or any of the branches cam­puses in Pe­nang, Perak, Jo­hor and fac­ulty branches in Pa­hang and Sabah to en­quire.

Al­ter­na­tively, you may log on to the web­site at www. tarc. edu. my.

The three bronze win­ners – ( from left) Lim Xing yi, chef Lu­cas Liao shing Jie and sern Lai sheng ( right) to­gether with the chief judge of the ice- carv­ing cat­e­gory, Frankie Lee Kim soon ( third from left).

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