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Trial at Coco Brew Restaurant the recipe for success for four CQU hospitality students

[by Greg Chapman]

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Shakira Oram. Image: supplied

Rockhampton restaurant Coco Brew has found CQU’s hospitality training to be the perfect ingredient for success with owner manager Robin Adams hiring four students after a recent trial.

Mr Adams said he was pleased with CQU’s training after previously hiring a hospitality student, Trixie Magpusao.

“Trixie, a long-term member of our team was doing the same course when the need for staff was mentioned,” Mr Adams said.

“Trixie then organised the students to come on down for a look at the operations and a trial.”

Teacher Charlie Jensen worked with Robin to arrange for a group of hospitality students to undertake a work trial and ultimately four students – Binita Gurung, Meredith Walker, Tracelyn Warusam and Shakira Oram – were chosen as casual employees.

Mr Adams said CQU’s training meant his new employees already had a sound knowledge of customer service.

“What works best about having these ladies is that on arrival to the venue they have a basic understanding of hospitality,” he said.

“They are learning the floor at the moment along with the bar area, how to communicate with guests whilst taking orders, placing them in the system with knowledge of the food.”

All the students receive their hospitality training in the Willby’s Training Restaurant at CQU’s Rockhampton City Campus.

Diploma of Hospitality Management student Binita said having the job at Coco Brew was a real confidence boost.

“I’m normally a shy person, so this is a great achievement for me. I am really enjoying talking to the customers,” she said.

First Nations woman Shakira, who belongs to the Kanolu and Gungalu peoples, is studying a Certificate III in Hospitality and said she was enjoying working in the restaurant.

“I’ve finally found what I’ve always wanted to do. Honestly, I just love it,” she said.

Rockhampton Girls Grammar School (RGGS) student Meredith, who is also studying the Certificate III, had previously gained experience working at Dingles Restaurant and is excited to be broadening her skillset with Coco Brew.

“Coco Brew is definitely a very good experience – it’s extremely popular and they really get you to understand all the different aspects of hospitality and help you expand your skills,” she said.

“The training I have received at Willby’s Restaurant has really given me the experience I need on how to handle different situations. It’s definitely been a good way for me to get into hospitality.”

Fellow RGGS and Torres Strait Islander (Dhoeybaw Clan) Certificate III student Tracelyn said: “I am working in the restaurant, and I’ve done my first shift. It’s been really good.”

“It’s been really exciting to be able to work with new people and the Willby’s training has helped me a lot.”

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