By Ryan Hughley
“I never wanted to cook” were the first words out of J.P. Marshall’s mouth when we asked him about his culinary aspirations. “My father was a chef and all of my brothers are chefs so the last thing I wanted to do was follow in their footsteps.” However, after fighting the good fight for most of his life, Marshall will be graduating from New School of Cooking’s Culinary Arts Program in June.
Possessing a smokey voice and standing at 6’3”, this native New Yorker is a hard one to miss. Despite his size he moves nimbly around the kitchen, working hard to create a team dynamic with his fellow classmates.
“I’ve developed a lot of patience since enrolling and I’ve discovered that management is my strength, I know the strengths and weaknesses of my fellow students.”
After spending 30 years successfully working in the IT field, Marshall realized something was missing from his life, “working in IT was great, I really enjoyed it, but I wasn’t satisfied and that’s when I realized that I didn’t have a dream job, but I did want to pursue a dream life.” Enrolling as a full-time student at New School of Cooking fit perfectly with his new goal.
Marshall fully immersed himself in his new role as a culinary student undertaking stages and paying his dues by working the line in different kitchens across Los Angeles. “Working the line is physically demanding and was a real challenge when I first started but now I understand why it’s such an important part of culinary training. I have a lot more autonomy in the kitchen I’m working in now and I know what I’m doing!”
Marshall and another fellow student are considering opening up a restaurant together and continuing to implement what they’ve learned at New School of Cooking in order to bring delectable cuisine to customers in the LA area! He is a true testament that it doesn’t matter where you are in life, you can always go after your dream job.