Hollywood Casino launches third college partnership
The aroma of freshly baked pastries filled the kitchen in Eibling Hall as hospitality students prepared for visitors at Columbus State Community College on July 27.
Columbus State will train more than 450 casino employees in culinary arts as part of a college partnership with Hollywood Casino, according to a press release.
Positions are available for chefs, bakers, kitchen stewards, restaurant supervisors, bartenders and servers. Applicants may apply at hollywoodcolumbus.com.
According to Ameet Patel, general manager of Hollywood Casino, their relationship with Columbus State is ongoing.
“We have a long history of training professionals to serve in local kitchens and dining rooms, and we are excited to join Hollywood in this important workforce development program,” said Cheryl Hay, director of workforce development at Columbus State.
Patel said Hollywood Casino features a variety of eating options, ranging from fine dining at Final Cut Steakhouse to the casual feel of its Epic Buffet. There is also a sports bar, entertainment lounge and 20,000-square foot multi-purpose banquet hall.
Approximately 40,000 applications were submitted for review, Patel said. They made contingent job offers to more than 700 residents, with 20 percent of those hires coming from the Westside.
On July 27-28 a hiring event was held at Columbus State Community College’s Workforce Development Center. Around 150 students and alumni attended the first day, said Rikki Tanenbaum, vice president of marketing for Hollywood Casino.
Tanenbaum said approximately 30 people received job offers on the spot. Another 20-30 candidates are scheduled for one-on-one interviews.
Bexley resident Sashia Hawkins came with previous experience in food service. Hawkins wanted a job where she can showcase her personality. She described herself as outgoing and willing to please a customer.
“They can ask me for anything,” Hawkins said. “With me they will get the help they need.”
Hawkins said the panels had activities focused on hospitality. Candidates were asked to role play, demonstrated greetings, interactions with guests and brainstormed together.
Patel said casino guests will have an unparalleled experience at their restaurants. He said they will have 2,000 passionate individuals who are driven to provide a product not found anywhere else in the region.
“It’s the overall packaged experience they won’t find anywhere else in the city,” Patel said.
Mokie Steiskal, interim dean for career and technical programs, said candidates are trained in food safety and handling, knife training and the responsible serving and sale of alcohol.
Training will complete by mid-September, Patel said.
The Ohio Casino Control Commission announced the grand opening of Hollywood Casino will be Oct. 8, which is Columbus Day.