Of course it’s always a great feeling when things go exactly according to plan, but most of the time that isn’t the case. Whether you are thinking about changing career paths or just getting started in life, there are many important decisions that you will need to make shortly. When I decided to go with the path that was closest to my heart, I was the happiest.
After graduating with a Bachelor’s degree in business administration, I was off to the corporate world pushing paper and working for three different bosses. There was a lot of human interaction, which was nice, but there was little satisfaction in my job as an office manager. I was looking for something more, but I didn’t quite know it yet.
My love for cooking led me to culinary school to seek a second degree. Adjusting to life as a student again was a bit difficult, but I got used to it. I found the love for learning that I had once had. Dealing with something I had a passion for really made school more enjoyable this time around. The first time I enrolled in college courses, I chose the safe bet, the degree program that could guarantee a great position and steady paycheck.
Upon graduating from culinary school, I began working in a restaurant full-time. I entered as a line chef and worked my way up to assistant head chef in a well-respected restaurant in town. The experience I gained in the kitchen there was invaluable. It let to my signature dishes and the confidence it took to create things out of the box in regards to everyday courses.
After spending a few years in the kitchen of a few different restaurants, there was no doubt in my mind that I wanted to share what I had learned to create with more than a few hundred restaurant patrons; I wanted to reach out to people on a national scale. I began writing my first cookbook at age 30.
Once I reached out to some old friends in the business world, I began to pitch my book at a few publishing houses. Eventually, I met someone who was interested. Soon after hitting the shelves, my cookbook was a hit. I began touring the tri-state area, signing copies and performing cooking demonstrations.
I was very satisfied with the success of my first book and decided to write a cookbook that focused on college students. I compiled recipes that detailed cheap, easy meals that can be made and stored throughout the week. Reaching out to young adults with my second book gave me the idea for my next business venture – a mentoring program with inner city teens. My cooking school was an after school activity of sorts that gave teens a positive outlet and hope for the future after high school.