Clive Wanstall, Chef

Instructor / Faculty Spotlight

Clive Wanstall, Chef

Teaching the Art of Food

After working in restaurants from London to Hawaii, Clive settled in Eugene as a chef at Ambrosia. Shortly thereafter, he joined the Advisory Board for the Culinary Arts Program at Lane Community College. Three years later, an instructor position was open and he thought, "I could do this." While he had no formal training as an instructor, he realized "teaching is something I've always done. What do you do at a restaurant? You hire people, train people, hone their skills, and then eventually they leave when they've learned as much as they can from you."

In Clive's classroom, learning happens through experience - both good and bad. One tactic he uses to facilitate an open classroom is the weekly presentation of the Failure Cup. Made by the chef himself, the burned and melted measuring cup is presented as "You Are So Beautiful" plays in the background. It is a highly coveted trophy among his students. There is a lot of laughter in the kitchen classrooms at Lane.

It isn't all fun and games though. Each Thanksgiving, Clive gives the students a crash course in high volume production as they prepare a free full Thanksgiving meal for families in need - this year, nearly 2,500 people were served. The Wiper kitchen is a flurry of activity during the week-long preparation. Clive says the students enjoy making a difference. "My boss' boss, Vice President of Operations, Brian Kelly, cooks the turkey!" he says. This also serves as a good reminder to the students that as a chef, you won't be taking the holidays off.

Clive feels lucky to work at Lane. "I can't believe they pay me!" he says. He appreciates the encouragement and focus the culinary department has in guiding student interests. "Lane is generous and kind," Clive says, because their operation is focused on the students. He also feels that people can come to Lane unsure of their future and take advantage of the wide range of programs available to find their path.

Truly a treasure at Lane, Clive uses his charisma and experience to show his students how to breathe life into their passion and, of course, make amazing food.

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