ChefsGO 1.0 - Workforce Credential | Thomas Nelson Community College

ChefsGO 1.0 - Workforce Credential

Chef working at station in a kitchen environment
Program Details
Academic Division: 
Continuing Education & Training

Next session begins February 2021. Application Deadline November 30.


About ChefsGO Pathway to Culinary Careers

In partnership with Williamsburg area chefs and restaurants, Thomas Nelson offers a unique opportunity to students interested in stepping into the restaurant, commercial, and non-commercial food service industries.

ChefsGO 1.0 is a  6-month culinary kickstart certificate program. The program provides 13 weeks of classroom and kitchen training (156 hours) taught by renowned, professionally-trained local chefs and industry professionals in partnership with Thomas Nelson. Classes are interactive and intensive, equipping students with foundational culinary techniques and knowledge including knife skills, equipment operation, kitchen mathematics, nutrition and food allergies, food and kitchen safety, and hands-on preparation of stocks and sauces, fruits and vegetables, meats and seafood, bakery products, and so much more. Then students participate in a 13-week paid mentorship (32-40 hours per week) in a participating restaurant following the classroom portion. This introductory culinary program will provide students with the skills needed to obtain gainful employment in a world-class restaurant and set them on a pathway to a career in Culinary Arts as well as other foodservice and hospitality opportunities.


What You Receive

  • Certificate of Completion from Thomas Nelson
  • Certified Kitchen Cook credential (upon successful completion of the American Hotel & Lodging Educational Institute Exam)
  • Peninsula Health District Food Handler Permit
  • CPR Certification
  • Opportunity for full-time employment to begin your culinary career (completion & performance dependent)

 What’s Included in Tuition

  • Uniform (2) Chef Coats, Knife Kit, Hat, Apron, Nametag, Thermometer
  • AHLEI Text Book & Exam
  • CPR Class & Exam
  • ServSafe Food Handler textbook
  • Fine Dining Dinner experience at Waypoint Seafood & Grill


  • Must register and attend a mandatory info session See dates below.*
  • Open to any Peninsula resident (must be 18 years of age by May 13, 2021 to participate). Must be able to work in Williamsburg.
  • Cooking skills and restaurant experience are not required.
  • Must meet technical requirements (Click here to view) 

Tentative dates

  • Info Sessions are a self-paced online course and will be available beginning October 1, 2020.
  • Deadline to apply is November 30, 2020.
  • Interviews will be held in early December.
  • Registration and Payment Due by February 5, 2021
  • Class Dates February 15, 2021 – August 11, 2021
  • Graduation Wednesday, August 18, 2020

Class Details

Culinary Foundations Classroom & Lab Training

  • February 15 - May 12, 2021 Mondays, Tuesdays and Wednesdays from 3 - 7 p.m.
  • Held at the Williamsburg Workforce Center & Warhill High School in Williamsburg
  • Attendance is mandatory.


Culinary Mentorship

  • May 13, 2021 – August 11, 2021
  • Mentorships are a full-time obligation (up to 40 hours per week) at a Williamsburg area restaurant and require a flexible working schedule including days, nights, weekend, and holidays.


Important To Apply

Application Process

  • Complete the mandatory info session by Nov 30, 2020 for your application to be considered.
    • Click the “Register Online” button below to login or create a new TNCC profile. From there you will be able to search for ChefsGO.
    • *New to Thomas Nelson? After registering for the info session please reach out to the Helpdesk at (757) 825-2709 or via email at to receive your username for MyTNCC where you can access the Info Session through Canvas, our Learning Management System.
  • Complete the below application and email to We will confirm receipt of your application.
  • We will schedule an interview with you and the Program Coordinators/Chefs in early December.
  • Acceptance letters will be sent by early January.
  • Payment in full is required by February 5, 2021. We accept Checks, Money Orders, American Express, MasterCard or VISA. We do not accept Cash

Download the Program Application

Financial Assistance

  • Need based partial scholarships are available.
  • Financial assistance may be available for qualified candidates through the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act. Contact the Virginia Career Works Hampton office for more information at (757) 865-5800. Start this process as soon as possible.

Download the Scholarship Application

For more information please contact Holly Herrick at

Chef Hans Schadler

"ChefsGO 1.0 is a career opportunity for interested applicants 18 years old or older to explore the basic foundation of Culinary Arts. Thought and designed by highly skilled local professionals, the program will touch on all basic academic and culinary skill sets preparing the individuals for possible entry positions in the Hospitality arena."

Chef Hans Schadler, Waypoint Seafood and Grill

Register Online

Register for classes online using the Thomas Nelson Workforce Development registration system.

Register Online