David Pendse

It sounds simple, but a sense of urgency is critical in the hospitality industry. David Pendse , Culinary Instructor
, The Art Institute of Charleston, a branch of The Art Institute of Atlanta

Was there a defining moment when you knew you were destined to become a creative professional?

When I was in high school, I had a part-time job in a local ice cream shop and deli. I was fascinated watching my co-workers making ice cream from scratch, slicing meats, and making soups. There was something about it that made me feel alive and inspired.

What class assignment exemplifies your approach to teaching and mentoring?

At the beginning of each quarter I assign students a personal project. I simply ask them two questions: What is a sense of urgency? And how do you use that as a student and in your personal life?

How does collaboration contribute to students’ success—particularly when students from various programs work together?

In my Senior Practicum Course in Culinary, students basically go through the steps required to open their own restaurant. Throughout the process, they interact with students in Fashion, Graphic Design, and Photography.

What’s the most important thing you impart to students to help them succeed in class and the real world?

My teaching style can be summed up like this: Creativity and time management. I believe time management is one of the most relevant skills needed to be successful in all aspects of life. I try to develop those skills by challenging students to create realistic goals to meet daily objectives. It sounds simple, but a sense of urgency is critical in the hospitality industry.

Anything else you’d like to share?

Every course is different, but every day my focus is the same: a hands-approach to learning through cooking demonstrations and teaching both classic and modern techniques.