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Collins, Class 61

 Collins is a retired U.S Marine Gunnery Sergeant and cancer survivor. Having life changing experiences led him to go after the one dream he never pursued – being a Chef. Today, Collins is a CCSC Class 61 student learning the techniques and skills that will jump-start his culinary career!

   Prior to joining the U.S Marines, Collins grew up in New York and worked in restaurants.  At the age of twenty, he enlisted in the U.S Marines and held many responsibilities in the Logistics Department including Gunnery Sergeant, a managerial logistic role. Retiring after twenty-two years of service was rewarding, but there were obstacles to overcome in his future. Collins was diagnosed with PTSD among other service-related disabilities, and later on battled prostate cancer.

 “Quitting wasn’t an option,” says Collins, describing his will to persevere. He beat the cancer and went on to finish his Bachelors in Business Administration at University of Phoenix. He took jobs in the business world, working at Amazon and Home Goods.

 The decision to pursue a culinary career goes back to his roots. “I wanted to go back to what I know and what I like.” Collins brings high energy and punctuality to the kitchen. He has respect for the knowledge he’s gaining here and for the Chefs giving their instruction. He also qualifies for the Patriot Military Family Foundation scholarship. Collins is thankful for the opportunity to be eligible for this grant and knows food is where his future lies. CCSC is grateful to have a Veteran like Collins in Class 61, who has a passion for food and an eagerness to learn!