Based on the French "alternance" training concept that is very popular in Europe, SYB’s training programme allows our students to acquire excellent baking and life skills by alternating 2 weeks of classes at school with 2 weeks of practical internships at international 5-star hotels. We follow this model for the duration of the programme.
SYB’s traditional bakery and pastry training content is based on the French CAP diploma, as developed by the Ecole Francaise de Boulangerie et Pâtisserie d’Aurillac (EFBA), one of the top-ranking bakery schools in France. SYB’s French bakery and pastry training includes both theoretical and practical classes.
Theory classes focus on:
- Ingredients: composition, chemical reactions and interactions, nutrition
- Baking processes: types of fermentation, temperature variations, freezing processes
- Hygiene: food quality and safety; workplace hygiene
Practical classes focus on the following recipes:
- French baguette
- Country breads
- Rye-flour breads
- Brioche in various shapes
- Ciabatta bread
- Pizza dough
Other European recipes are introduced throughout the year.
- Crème brulées
- Fruit Tarts
- Black Forest
These classes take place at the SYB baking centre, which was inaugurated in March 2011 thanks to the support of SweetPearl™.
Chinese-style Western pastry
Given the popularity of Taiwan-inspired bakeries in China, it is important that our students also have the knowledge and capability to produce Chinese-style bakery products, which include soft / sweet breads with red bean or meat floss, egg tarts, mousse cakes, donuts, stuffed Danish, cream cakes, cookies, etc.
These classes are organised by the Caoyang Vocational School. During the one-year training programme, SYB students pass both Level 5 (Basic) and Level 4 (Intermediate) of the official “Western Bakery” (西式面点师) diploma, which is delivered by the Shanghai Municipal Human Resources and Social Security Bureau and recognised throughout China.
The Chinese-style Western pastry training programme includes both theoretical and practical classes and is held at the Caoyang Vocational School.
For marginalised youths to succeed in modern society, a technical skill is but one of the many skills that they have to master. They also need to be strong mentally, so as to able to cope with stress, setbacks, and difficulties in life. Since most rural youths grew up in environments in which they were not nurtured with love and were exposed to numerous negative habits and influences, SYB aims to rectify this situation by instilling the students with a conscientious spirit of citizenship, responsibility, optimism, and respect for others through a life skills curriculum developed by an expert team led by Professor Li Xiaowen of East China Normal University. The curriculum is taught by professionals with extensive experience in guiding and nurturing young people, and will equip the students with the mental fortitude and personal discipline necessary for them to succeed in the future.
Recognising that our students are required to work with non-Chinese speaking pastry chefs at major hotels, we collaborate with the local NGO Stepping Stones to deliver English classes at the Caoyang Vocational School. Twice a week, our students practise their oral English under the instruction of Stepping Stones volunteers.
To ensure the high quality of our training programme and that our graduates meet as many of the market requirements as possible, SYB has developed a unique programme inspired by the French “alternance” system, which combines classes in school and practical internships at numerous 5-star hotels in Shanghai.
Each partner hotel opens one or more intern positions, filled by two SYB students who rotate every two weeks: while one student is working as a trainee at the partner location, the other studies baking in class, so that there is always one student available for our partner hotel.
Intensive training prior to the internship and regular check-ups by our bakery teachers and by our social educators during the internship period ensure that the students adapt well to their work environment and learn as much as possible from their mentor chefs.