Student Spotlight: Tiffany Lewis
Major: Culinary Arts
When Tiffany Lewis graduated from high school, she didn’t go to college. Instead, she married, had a family and started a career, and she was happy with her decisions.
But the economic downturn took its toll, which left Lewis wondering what to do next. Thankfully, she received unexpected guidance from her son.
“He was graduating from high school and said, ‘Mom, you sacrifice everything for us. You should now go do what you need to do for yourself,’” she said. “That encouraged me. Now that I was sending my son to college, I decided why not go to college myself?”
Lewis enrolled at College of DuPage and decided to follow her passion for food by selecting the Culinary Arts program.
“I was able to work part-time and come to COD full-time,” she said. “I took all of my culinary classes on campus and finished all my general education requirements at the Naperville Regional Center. I was in classrooms with younger students, but I still fit in and was engaged in the classroom setting.”
After graduating from COD, Lewis worked several catering and food service jobs – as the assistant pastry chef at City Gate Grill, where she helped to create pastries and desserts for the restaurant and special events, and at the new Marriott in Naperville, where she helped open the Artisan Table restaurant. It was here where she truly fell in love with pastries.
“The art and the creation that is made through desserts impressed me so much that I started baking at home,” she said. “I went back to COD to take a Cake Decorating and Entrepreneur class to enhance my skills with the hope of having my own business someday, where I can do what I love.”
She has done just that. While working full-time at Enercon Services, Lewis launched BabyCakes by Tiffany, a home-based business where she can create in my kitchen. She just celebrated her first anniversary and her business continues to grow.
“I developed the name BabyCakes because in the past, most of my clients would tell me that the desserts were very good but they weren’t able to finish it all. Chefs do not like waste, so I thought to myself, what if I create sweet treats in small bites.
“It can be hard juggling both a full-time job and having a home baking business on the side, but my hopes are that my baking business will take off and be successful. I’m very proud to say that COD has allowed me to follow my passion. And I thank COD for having the Naperville Center. It’s close to my home, which helped me achieve my goal.”
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