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Singley Academy and Toyota Of Irving Cook Up Valentine’s Day Surprise

Photo provided by Baylor Scott and White Irving

Irving- The culinary students of Singley Academy teamed up with Toyota of Irving to give a sweet surprise to the nurses at Baylor Scott and White Irving on Friday, February 11.

“We’ve done a lot of projects with Singley’s culinary program,” Toyota of Irving’s Mark Baker said. “They’ve done the Thanksgiving employee events that we do every year, they’ve done a bunch of things like that. We’ve also held a mixer for the Chamber of Commerce and the Hispanic Chamber of Commerce for the last five or six years, and the students from Singley a couple times they’ve made some stuff for the event. Other times they’ve come and serve, because it’s the Culinary and Hospitality program and they have to learn how to work with crowds and with different groups of people and things of that sort. So, I was very familiar with [the program].

“I had an idea in January after hearing all the stories of the nurses, all the bad things that have happened with them and having to deal with COVID…we decided we want to come up with something for them. I talked to the hospital about what was possible because there are restrictions about going into hospitals and things of that sort, and came up with the idea that for Valentine’s Day, let’s give them a treat that makes that day a little bit brighter than it would be otherwise. And so I talked to the chief chef at Singley, Ann Lowry, and she said that they would be happy to work with us. So we came up with an idea of offering a handmade, homemade treat for each of the nurses and that’s where the event went.”

The students created over 300 treat bags full of Valentine’s Day goodies.

 “We made decorated Valentine cookies and cake balls that we then packaged and put a little note on there in support of the all the awesome things that the nurses did for the whole community over the past two years,” Singley Academy’s Chef Ann Lowrie said. “We had a cool little sticker on there that just said thank you for being on the frontline.

 “So, our program at Jack E. Singley, the students apply as eighth graders to come to Singley, and it’s not just culinary or hospitality, it’s all the different programs here at Singley. They make their application their eighth grade year, and so when or if they’re accepted into Singley, they start their freshman year in Culinary and Hospitality. Then, at the end of their freshman year, they will choose one path or the other, and then they are in our career pathway until they graduate. Once they become seniors, they’re actually doing internships out in the community. So if they’re hospitality, then they’re maybe doing front of the house of a restaurant or a hotel. And of course, if they’re culinary, then they would be working in a kitchen. We have students that work in the Four Seasons, to Las Colinas Country Club, the Hackberry Country Club, and in a lot of different restaurants in Irving.”

“Our team is grateful for the sweet treats created with love by these talented Irving ISD culinary students,” Cindy Schamp, president of Baylor Scott & White – Irving, said. “Our hardworking staff tirelessly care for patients every day and gestures like this remind them that others recognize their efforts. Toyota of Irving has been a generous partner to Baylor Scott & White – Irving for many decades, and we thank them for helping bring cheer to our staff this Valentine’s Day.”

 “I’ve had reports back from the people at the hospital and it was exceptional.” Baker said. “The reception was great from everyone involved, from the administration of the hospital to the folks with the [Irving] Health Foundation to make it happen. They all gave me reports back saying that everyone was thrilled with it. They had no negative reactions at all, and most people just thought it was so nice that the kids got involved and did something you know, I’m tired of you know what they normally do in school.”

“We really encourage our students to be involved in community service activities,” Chef Lowrie said. “This is just one way that we can encourage them to give back to the community. Even though it may be something that they did in class, they still are very aware that that what we’re doing is being donated to someone in the community. And we try every month to have something that we’re donating or we’re giving to within the community.”