Cooking Up a Career in the Food Industry

DSF Scholar Alma Torales-Gomez celebrates taking the next step towards her career in the food industry

DSF Scholar Alma Torales-Gomez has all the ingredients needed for a successful career in the food industry. From the DSF Future Center at DCIS Montbello to the classrooms at Johnson & Wales University, Alma is well on her way to achieving her dream of opening a bakery.

“I’ve always liked to cook,” shares Alma. “My goal is to open a bakery. I know college is important to be successful. You can only get so far without a degree.”

Prep time included

In her senior year at DCIS Montbello, Alma spent hours in the DSF Future Center. There, she worked with DSF College Advisor Obinna Onyeali to navigate her path to and through college. Reflecting back, Alma says that Obinna helped her learn to manage her time, supported her with applying to colleges, and helped her identify and apply for scholarships, including the DSF Scholarship.

“Through senior year, I know if something came up, I could count on Obinna,” Alma says.

Obinna says that Alma came into the Future Center at DCIS Montbello with a dream, and helping her realize that dream was a special experience.

“What stands out most when thinking of Alma is dedication to reach her goal and dream to become a chef. When she was accepted to Johnson & Wales, she was overcome with joy and tears, and that let me know a difference was truly made in a student’s life.”

Recipe for success

Alma’s hard work paid off. Now, as a first-generation college student pursuing her bachelor’s degree in culinary arts at Johnson & Wales University, Alma is grateful to have the support of the DSF Scholarship to make college possible.

“My mom has always wanted me to go to college, since she didn’t get the opportunity,” shares Alma. “Right now I’m working as a banquet cook while I’m taking classes. What I learn in class, I can take back to work.”

Alma knows that a key ingredient for a successful career in any industry is a path that fits your passions, and there are resources like DSF to help make goals achievable. This, she says, is her advice to her fellow students.

“I knew that cooking as a career was something for me to look forward to,” Alma says. “A college degree allows you to learn things differently to get to where you want to be.”