Dignity Works Here at RCC presents Project ELEVATE

Educate, Life Skills, Enrichment, Vocational Skills, Advocacy, Transition, Empowerment

Summer 2023

RCC and Dignity Works Here, Inc. are partnering to offer a 6 week workshop All About Restaurants.

The classes are engaging, hands-on and will focus on the skills related to “adulting” targeting individuals 18+ years.

All abilities are welcome to participate in Project ELEVATE in an inclusive environment at RCC’s Hospitality & Culinary Arts Center in Nyack, NY.

Students will learn life skills, build self-esteem and confidence, make new friends, and have fun!

Contact us at [email protected] with any questions.

Class Schedule

May 23 – June 29, 2023 
Classes will be Tuesdays and Thursdays at the Hospitality and Culinary Arts Center, 70 Main Street, Nyack, NY.

MINDFULNESS & YOGA9:30 am – 10:00 am

All 3 classes bundled: $2,100 ($35 per hour)

Class Descriptions

This class will teach individuals different strategies to practice mindfulness as well as the benefits derived from the practice. Participants will be taught different mindfulness breathing techniques, participate in guided mediation and will have an opportunity to practice gentle yoga poses.

Requirements: yoga/exercise mat, wear comfortable clothing and athletic footwear

This class will be broken up into 2 sections. Participants will have an opportunity to learn about the inner workings of a restaurant and what it means to work in the front or back of the house. Participants will learn about the different types of jobs that are necessary for a restaurant to be successful. A heavy emphasis will be placed on kitchen safety, appropriate sanitation, communication, following directions, time management and organization. Chef Mark Davidoff – Director of the RCC Hospitality and Culinary Center and Assistant Chef Dennis Cosgrove will collaborate with DWH instructors on this class as they have years of experience in the Hospitality and Culinary field.

Front of the House

  • This class will expose participants to the different jobs that work the front of the house such as host, server, busser, to-go specialist, service manager and bartender(non-alcoholic beverages). Participants will have an opportunity to practice skills for each of these jobs such as answering the phone, greeting guests, taking an order, setting a table, and cleaning and sanitizing tables.

Back of the House

  • This class will expose participants to the different jobs that work the back of the house such as dishwasher, line cook, utility prep, food runner, chef and kitchen manager. Personal hygiene and safe food handling will be emphasized. Participants will apply established kitchen safety rules and guidelines to maintain a safe kitchen environment. Students will utilize kitchen utensils, and appliances to make different recipes. Participants will have the opportunity to learn how to load and operate an industrial dishwasher, make sure utensils are returned to their correct place, sanitize the kitchen and lunch room and prep the kitchen for the next class.
  • Participants will be able to eat what they make during lunch.

On the final day of class, a Project ELEVATE Cafe – a“pop-up” restaurant will be created and participants will operate the restaurant for the duration of that day – filling all of the roles that are needed for a restaurant to be successful. Guests will be invited to purchase lunch and beverages from a fixed menu. DWH instructors will provide support so every individual will experience success.

The participants in the class will have the opportunity to create their own restaurant. Participants will be assigned to small groups on the first day of class and will work with that group for the duration of the program to complete the project. Support to each group will be given by DWH instructors. Each group will design their own restaurant and will have to work collaboratively together to map out the interior, decide on the type of restaurant, what food served, and create a menu. At the conclusion of the program, each group will make a presentation about their restaurant.

three students learning in the kitchen
student and instructor exercising
photo credit: Stacey B. Orzell
student breaking an egg an putting in bowl

Bundled Class Fee

Class Cost
Mindfulness $280
Project Based Learning – Start a Restaurant: $490
Restaurant Simulation $1,330
Total (bundled) $2,100
student drawing
graters and wire whisks on a shelf
student and instructor sharpening a knife