Charlene Aitchison has spent nine years cooking up success in the kitchens of West Highland College UHI in Fort William, going from student to top job as senior chef/lecturer.
Charlene, from Claggan, first entered catering as a baker at Nevis Range, attending the then Lochaber College to gain her basic certificates while still at work. She later became a full-time student, gaining further, more advanced modules, before joining the kitchen tutoring team.
She has worked for several years alongside previous college chefs, as catering assistant and chef trainer. Charlene has not only trained full-time and part-time catering students and high school pupils on weekly placement but also played an active role in running the training kitchen, planning and delivering a varied menu for the public.
Over the years Charlene has also run various evening classes in food preparation, baking and cake-decorating which have proved popular and attracted a large number of people.
She said: “It was only when I started work at Nevis Range that I discovered my interest in catering and when I came to the college I realised the opportunities in the industry and the possibilities to advance through gaining qualifications and building experience.
“I am delighted to take up this new post at the college and am really looking forward to working with everyone, especially the new students who will be starting when the new term gets under way.”