Teresa didn’t realize how much she could enjoy school before coming to Brook Road Academy at St. Joseph’s Villa. “It’s so calming here. I’m not stressed like I was at other schools,” she said. On top of her classmates and teachers, she loves the Villa’s Career and Transition Services (CATS) program.  Through CATS, Teresa is pursuing her dream of becoming a professional cake decorator.  She works on baking techniques three days a week in the Villa’s Culinary Arts Center.  CATS has made it possible for her to apply those skills through hands-on learning experiences at local bakeries.

Teresa practices piping icing in the Villa’s Culinary Arts Center.

Since arriving at Brook Road Academy this year, Teresa has worked at Edible Arrangements, Panera Bread, Sub Rosa Bakery and Zosaro’s Cakes & Pastries. “I really like working with chocolate,” she said. Her inspiration comes from watching baking shows on TV. One day she hopes to open her own business called “TT’s Cupcakes” (or T’s Cupcakes—she hasn’t decided). She’s even drawn up a logo for it!

From cake design to modeling fondant, Teresa will continue building her culinary prowess through graduation. For her senior project, she will create the cake for her class’s graduation banquet. CATS is also helping her work toward her ServSafe certification for safe food preparation. Teresa has set her sights high for life after school, and we can’t wait to see where she goes from here.

Learn more about Brook Road Academy at www.brookroadacademy.com.

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