Students in the Restaurant Operations class speak of the positive influences of the Flavors Restaurant, the great teacher and excellent experience they receive for future endeavors.
Several of the students agree the experience they receive is worth all the effort placed into the culinary classes. Several of the students love the class for its great teaching methods and the different options they have on what they can do in the class.
Student Roxana Aspillhea takes the course to better her skills behind the scenes and hopes on working in a catering business, and knows that this class will help her in achieving that goal. Another student who asked to remain anonymous said that he has acquired a job and hopes to hold onto it. He thanks the class for his recent employment. The student also mentioned that he enjoyed cooking for the students outside which to him feels like he’s much closer to the students, and helps create people skills.
Student Melissa Lotts says that all she really wants is to learn the basics and better her culinary skills.
All of the students agree that the class is fun and a great way to develop their culinary and artistic skills. The class also agrees that the professor, Rick Prondzinski, is a great teacher. Aspillhea had this to say: “He is a great teacher, he’s funny, fun, but he also keeps us in line. Overall he is an amazing teacher, and I enjoy his class.”
Another anonymous student said: “Rick I think is one of the best professors, the others are good, but he’s definitely one of the better ones on campus. He never gets angry and he always has a smile on his face.”
Lotts too said she loved Rick as a teacher and how great his teaching skills are, along with his ability to keep a firm grip on the group without flying off the handle.
When sitting down with Prondzinski to ask about the history of Flavors, he had much to say.
Flavors has been in business for 34 years. The first 27 of which was named “The Kampus Inn”; during which time the first professor to work at the restaurant, Steve Richardson, was teaching when the name of the restaurant changed. Prondzinski states “It was 27 years ago that the name was changed to reflect what ‘Flavors’ stands for.” He says he enjoys the name and wouldn’t change it.
Prondzinski has been a professor for thirteen years. Six years at Lake County and seven years at Yuba County. He truly values his customers and even goes on to state that he teaches the students hospitality. When asked if they have ever opened the restaurant to the public he replied, “There are other businesses here as well and opening our doors to the public would interfere in them making money as well so we leave it open to students and faculty only.” He went on to say, “We also have outdoor BBQs that the students seem to enjoy more; although I have noticed that the students think that this (indoor) portion of the restaurant is a faculty area, and I wanted to clear that up.”
Prondzinski’s main goal is to get as many students as possible to advance in the culinary career, although only about 85 percent advance. There are those that only take the course as an art class, which he is fine with since most people who join want to learn how to make soups, sauces, and several other dishes for their own benefit.
Overall the menu is simple, offering a wide selection of dishes to choose from without being too overwhelming. Prondzinski changes the menu every day. He believes that, compared to that of a week long menu, that only that limited the creativity of the students. Having the ability to choose what the students make gives the students a chance to spontaneously create culinary pieces without stunting their skills. He and his students prepare for the lunch time rush of hungry students clambering to get a taste of what Flavors has to offer.