Selection takes place during October each year.

Adverts are placed at schools, counselling rooms, children’s homes, social services and churches, in local newspapers and on shop notice boards. Interested students either collect or are sent application forms which must be returned to the school with proof of combined parents earnings or an affidavit in that respect. They are also required to write a motivation as to why they would like to become part of the hospitality/ culinary industry.

A paper based selection process is done to choose the most likely candidates, based mainly on their family financial situation and their enthusiasm for the industry as expressed in their written motivations.

Depending on the number of potential candidates coming out of this exercise it may be necessary to further thin out the number and if required short interviews (10 min) are held with all the applicants against a standard questionnaire.

The idea is to get the numbers down to 20 in Durban and 24 in Riebeek Valley.

Once this has been achieved a date is set and the successful candidates go through a final selection process. This process includes an assignment which they bring with them to the final selection day. The final selection day includes a “Buddy Cook-off” where candidates are paired with a current student, provided with ingredients and a recipe and are required to cook. The Buddy provides guidance and demonstrates basic skills. The Buddy assists the Culinary Lecturer in judging their candidate’s performance in the kitchen focussing particularly on intellectual curiosity and enthusiasm for the process. Candidates complete a short numeracy and literacy assessment followed by a final panel interview. The panel generally includes a psychologist, the Dean of The International Hotel School, a representative of City and Guilds and a Trustee. Each element of the selection process is scored and the candidates achieving the top scores become the successful students. 12 students are selected for Riebeek Valley and 10 for Durban.