Mesa College Students Turn Sous Chefs for San Diego's Top Chefs

Ten Mesa College students will get a taste of what it is like to work side-by-side with San Diego's top chefs when they serve as sous chefs for the KPBS and Saks Fifth Avenue Celebrate Coast to Coast Fashion fundraising event on Thursday, March 15.

As patrons revel in an evening of fashion and sample the hottest trends in cuisine, the students, who are enrolled in the San Diego Mesa College Culinary Arts/Culinary Management program, will experience what it is like behind the burner in a "kitchen stadium" atmosphere.

As sous chefs, they will take command of actual production of plates created by top chefs including Chef Bernard Guillas, The Marine Room, La Jolla; Chef Riko Bartolome, Asia-Vous Restaurant; Chef Beryl Ann Byrd, Just Fabulous Pastries; and Chef Vincent Dangler & Frank Busalacchi, Alfiére Mediterranean Bistro.

The idea to involve the students was the brainchild of one of the event's featured chefs, Peter Barabas Robson, who teaches in the Mesa College/Culinary Arts, Culinary Management Program. "It's a great way for students to experience the thrill and pressure of a high-profile event, and to work side-by-side with San Diego's top culinary masters," says Robson.

Robson received his formal training at The Academy of Culinary Arts in Mays Landing, New Jersey. Chef Peter has over 25 years experience in the culinary field as an executive chef, manager of restaurants and a catering company, culinary consultant, and professional educator.

The ten Mesa College/Culinary Arts Program students participating in the event are Sindy Saentz, Tony Morgan, Chris Frost, Cynthia Nakagawa, Ashley Flick, Patrick Marquilly, Heather Hocking, Dereck Thomas, Rene Espinosa, and Angel Sotelo. Another student, Ashley Marinangeli, who is enrolled in the program’s Special Event Management class, will also participate in the event management side of the fundraising event.


For more information on the Mesa College Culinary Arts/Culinary Management Program, go to

The KPBS Celebrate Coast to Coast Fashion event on Thursday, March 15, at the Saks Fifth Avenue store in the Fashion Valley Mall. For more information, go to