In November 2017, I opened my first Cooking School, “Cooking Lessons with Shannon Vavich”. I used a room in my home (The Carolina Room in Field Grade Officer’s Housing) on Camp Lejeune North Carolina. For an initial investment of $5,000, I was able to stock this little room with four professional-level cooking stations, as well as equipment to make a wide variety of gourmet dishes including pastas, cannoli, macarons, pastries, chocolate sculpture, as well as elaborate decorated cakes of all kinds. I also converted the dining room of my house into a “classroom” for larger classes (not requiring heat stations) and for cooking demos for up to 20 people.
I taught a few classes in November and December of 2017, as a test of my business administration procedures and market viability. I worked on my curriculum tirelessly over Christmas Vacation that year, and in January 2018, I officially opened for business. In only five weeks, I was able to completely repay the 5,000 loan from my household account. I was in the black! In those five weeks, I moved over 125 students through my school. I would advertise my classes through my closed facebook group, and each class would book up in under an hour – with alternates.
I continued to teach through the spring and summer of 2018, but after Hurricane Florence, I decided to relocate my family due to water and mold issues in that house. I lived with my children on a farm in Kentucky from September 2018-July 2019, where I started building my Home Management Mentorship Program (online courses on home management – coming to the public in 2020), and took some much needed rest.
In July 2019, my husband and I moved our family to Stuttgart, Germany, on official military orders. All my cooking school equipment is in long term storage in the United States.
I do hope to open another cooking school facility one day in the future. Some of the best moments of my life were spent teaching in my little cooking school. I’d love to one day, operate a mini farm in conjunction to a cooking school, and on the same grounds – specializing in providing a therapeutic experience to military PTSD suffers, as well as all people with PTSD, depression and anxiety. I feel that cooking and gardening are medicine for the mind and the soul.
Until then, and while my husband is still serving as an Active Duty Marine, I’m writing, researching, operating my live cooking show, and building online programs.
- Shannon Vavich
Link: Cooking Lessons with Shannon Vavich