the ceremony began late evening, after guests were welcomed to the courtyard of the college.
friends, family, loved ones and supporters of this very first graduating class were excited to see their new skills put to the test. even the Somaliland Minister of Education was in attendance, and full of pride.
and after… ahem… a rather extended introduction from esteemed guests and college figures, interrupted only briefly for the maghrib prayer,
the new graduates, led by their beloved instructors, made the way to their ceremonious spots.
who are these graduates, you ask ? Mostly Somali or Somalilanders, mostly women, with all manner of spectacular goals, from opening their own restaurants, to establishing their own culinary non-profits, to feeding their luckiest of families.
the real challenge got underway. as night fell, and while onlookers and guests salivated, dish after delicious dish appeared on tables set before the judges, looking their best for the ultimate taste test.
and loaded up Hargeisa’s digital social networks with image upon image of delectable delights.
in the end, after laborious tasting of the salty, the sweet, and everything in between, the Egyptian judges cast their votes, and the winners were declared.
i won’t reveal the winners (you’ll have to attend the next contest), but apparently a dish needn’t be beautiful to be exquisite in flavor.
the graduates were proud, pleased, and stuffed, and prepared to embark on newly fragrant and scrumptious futures.
Photos from the first graduation ceremony of
Gollis European College of Hospitality,