Coyle to retire from culinary arts department

Sharida Rejon, Features Editor


After being on staff for 35 years at Bakersfield College, Chef Patrick Coyle, the Culinary Arts department chair, is retiring.

Coyle, whose journey at BC started in 1969 as a nursing student, later determined that his calling was actually in the culinary arts, so he changed his major and graduated from the culinary arts program.

Subsequently, he joined the staff as a chef in The Renegade Room in 1979, then became the Food Services director for 25 years, and 10 years later, became department chair of the culinary arts program.

Coyle has been a part of several events around campus and the community, including the annual Sterling Silver dinners at BC, and the 100th anniversary gala, which took place as part of the Bakersfield College centennial celebration.

“I hope people remember me as a hard worker who always took on the challenge,” Coyle said. “I’ve done a lot of BC events over the years, and I’ve had great employees, great staff, and the college community has been very receptive to the way we do things.”

Although Coyle is grateful for his journey at BC and is ready for the next chapter in his life, he admits that he will miss his favorite part of his job: working with students.

“The neatest thing about my job is seeing our students become very successful as they move up the ranks in their organizations,” said Coyle.

“I love seeing how they progress from the first day at BC, and watching the students grow through the program and get the confidence they need to know  that they can do the job,” he added.

“The progression of seeing them grow as students and as food service professionals, and as human beings, that growth there, is the most rewarding part of my job.”

After Coyle retires, the culinary arts program will be in the hands of Chef Suzanne Durst, who has been part of the instructional staff working alongside Coyle for quite some time.

“I don’t have any concerns about the program after I leave, I know it’s in good hands,” said Coyle. “We have set some standards, and I know the standards will be there in the end. I hope everyone continues to support The Renegade Room and the instructional team.”