With The Collegian, I had the great opportunity to catch up with one of Fowler Dining Hall’s most notable chefs, Mr. James. I was able to receive some insight into Mr. James’s inspiration to become a chef and a little background information on how everything began.
I commenced the conversation by asking M. James what inspired him to choose a profession in the culinary arts and for how long he had been in the profession? Mr. James explained that his love for cooking stemmed from his father, who was also a chef. He added that watching his father cook as a child aided his decision to pursue a profession as a chef. Mr. James expressed that he believes a person can always find a job if they have mastered the fundamentals of cooking. By watching and shadowing his father, Mr. James mastered the basic skills of cooking that have allowed him to sustain a career as a chef for more than forty years.
James explained his journey to becoming a professional chef as well; his first cooking job was in a small restaurant on a boardwalk in New Jersey. The job consisted of only prepping the food, but eventually opened doors to positions elsewhere as a chef.
The Collegian also inquired about his life to which James responded, “No I am not married, but however I have a wonderful family of six. I have one daughter and five grandchildren; two boys and three girls.” He expressed how his family leaves his heart filled with joy.
In his free time, James loves to shoot pool, go bowling with his friends and family, play card games and watch all the athletic games. When I asked James who he rooted for in the super bowl and why. He replied “That’s easy —” the eagles”. I have been a fan all my life; I was raised in Philadelphia, so I have no choice but to side with the best team in the league.”
If you know Mr. James, then you know that he is known for his remarkable personality, silly jokes, caring spirit and delicious stir-fry. He will be the highlight of your café experience.