College students serve up anniversary dish for restaurant

The talented students – all part of the college’s Northern Stars Student Enterprise Society - took charge of all aspects of the event at the Angeethi Indian Restaurant on Kells Lane to mark one year since its opening.

The event was the latest initiative by Northern Stars, an enterprise society launched by the college to give local students a platform to showcase their entrepreneurial talents.

One of the students who participated was Aiden Jackson, 17, who said: “The evening was a big confidence booster for all those involved and an extremely fulfilling experience. It was great to see everyone enjoying themselves while gaining important skills and experience that will be helpful in our future careers.

The 15 students were responsible for marketing the sell-out event, selling tickets, preparing food and undertaking front-of-house work. They also sourced raffle prizes to help raise money for the Gateshead College Foundation, an independent charity which provides funding that helps people develop skills to secure meaningful employment.

The event, attended by the Mayor of Gateshead and Gateshead College’s Board of Governors, raised more than £690 following match funding from the local branch of Barclays Bank.

Roy Thompson, fundraising officer for the college, said: “The event not only gave us an excellent platform to raise money for the Gateshead College Foundation but also provided a fantastic way to allow students to gain hands-on practical work experience.

“The Angeethi Restaurant Takeover and other similar opportunities provide students with the chance to prove their capabilities and a head start to gaining employment.

“I am a direct benefactor of this initiative and of the Gateshead College Foundation, and from my experience I can say that it offers unique opportunities which otherwise would not be possible.”

The event included a drinks reception followed by a lavish five-course meal, and guests were given the chance to win a range of prizes in the fundraising raffle including a signed Harry Styles T-shirt, a £250 voucher for Clear Photographic Gateshead and a table for two at Angeethi Indian Restaurant.

The anniversary, attended by almost 100 diners, finished with a firework display, which was organised by restaurant owners Ravi Makkapati and Priya Mishra.

Ravi Makkapati said:"To celebrate its first year in business we decided to put on an event with a difference.

“The idea was to showcase their entrepreneurial and organisational skills while giving them an opportunity to gain experience in a real-time business environment.

“Through this event we hope to have provided students with a platform to bridge the gap between studies and work experience. We also hope to organise more events in collaboration with Gateshead College next year to get more students involved in learning essential business skills."