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News from the Career and Technical Center

2014 graduate praises hard, but fair approach to education CTE provided  

 

Ribeca said CTE took him from "punk" to sous chef

Ribeca with Rother

For 2014 graduate Raffaello Ribeca, Capital Region BOCES Career and Technical School (CTE) provided a hard and fast reality on what life is all about.

The Niskayuna High School graduate described his high school self as a "lost child, a punk running the streets" until he entered the CTE program and met Chef Paul Rother.

"He gave me a brutal, but very needed life lesson and got me ready for what the real world is really all about."

"Everything I am today is because of what I learned right here in Capital Region BOCES and from this man, Chef Rother. ... I can't tell you how many times I have been in the kitchen and thought of the words of wisdom Chef Rother gave me about life, cooking and reality," Ribeca said on
Nov. 3 while making an unexpected stop at the Albany CTE campus.

Ribeca's path to the culinary program and CTE was not traditional and he had no knowledge of cooking or the culinary industry.

"I had failed ninth grade twice in Schenectady. I was just a punk running the streets there and then my family took me into Niskayuna and since I was getting older, we looked for a way to get a lot of credits quickly to graduate," he said. "That's how I ended up here."Ribecaa

He said Rother's hard, but fair approach to the kitchen and education "brought me around."

"You quickly learn what life is about. Your sneakers don't matter. It's your credit rating that matters," Ribeca said.

Six years removed from CTE, Ribeca has worked non-stop for the Angelo Mazzone culinary empire since being recommended to the company by Chef Rother and is currently a sous chef at Fish at 30 Lake in Saratoga. He is also a contract chef and left Nov. 4 for a six-month deployment to Puerto Rico, where he will be preparing meals for government and aid workers as part of the Spectrum Catering Corp.

"It's scary and I am pretty nervous, but I am half Puerto Rican and I have family there and I am looking forward to helping the country revitalize," Ribeca said.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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