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Stephanie Bruce

#172 Stephanie Bruce, Transfer to Cal Pomona
(Culinary Program Graduate)

At age 23, I decided to enroll in College of the Desert’s (COD) culinary arts program after my parents retired in Palm Springs. I got all the basics at College of the Desert, which really helped me to excel when I transferred to Cal Pomona. And I have to say, my most memorable professors were right here at COD. The local culinary program is truly respected in this business, and it’s the most impressive part of my resume.

Following my education, I took a job with the Yucaipa/Calimesa School District and really developed a passion for providing nutritional lunches to kids. The challenge of balancing healthy foods that taste good for students of a variety of different ages and palates is very rewarding.

I joined Palm Springs Unified School District in July 2013 as Director of Nutrition Services where I oversee the planning, preparation and serving of an average 22,000 meals per day.

I’ll go out and sit at the lunch tables with second and third graders to get their feedback. They’re so honest, but what I love most is that nine times out of 10, what they have to say is really positive. It’s the best part of my day!

What I appreciated most about my time at the desert’s community college was how they encouraged students to be active participants in the community. Working with students, faculty, parents and local partners to promote healthy eating and active living for the next generation is one of the best parts of my job. Thanks, COD.