TCC Southeast Hosts Italian Chef Lorenzo Polegri

Italian Chef Lorenzo Polegri, restaurant and culinary school owner, will share his experience with Tarrant County College students and the community in a presentation featuring his family vineyard and their olive oil production on Monday, Dec. 3,  from 10 a.m. to noon in the North Ballroom at TCC Southeast, 2100 Southeast Parkway in Arlington.

During his visit, Polegri also will demonstrate food preparation techniques specific to Italian cuisine, such as making risotto. His appearance is part of TCC’s ongoing efforts to serve the community through educational opportunities and to enhance the student experience.

Polegri’s distinguished culinary career includes:

  • 2015 — Guest farmer-chef lecturer at Harvard University in Cambridge presenting the new course, “Umbria and its new model for Farm to Table.” In cooperation with Arizona Culinary Institute, Culinary Institute of Michigan and Culinary Institute of Myrtle Beach.
  • 2010 — Guest chef at The White House with President Obama on March 4.
  • 2007 — Became expert of Italian Cuisine for The Art Institutes of America. Offered culinary trips and events; helped create a DVD series for students, The Italian Recipes for the Professional, along with Chef Joe Bonaparte and Chef Michael Nenes.
  • 2005 — Cooking for the first time at the James Beard Foundation of New York with the gala dinner, “A taste of Umbria, a touch of Orvieto.” It was the first of many return visits, with him being the most celebrated European chef at the James Beard House.

“Our Culinary Arts Program is widely considered to be world-class.  Having a talent such as Chef Polegri visit and share his talents with our students and community helps distinguish it even further,” said William Coppola, TCC Southeast president.

The Culinary Arts Program’s accolades include accreditation from the Accrediting Commission of the American Culinary Federation Education Foundation currently through 2022 and partnerships with industry leaders such as Delaware North that pave pathways for TCC students to enter top careers. The opportunity to gain job experience as they earn their degrees that may fulfill their practicum requirements in general hospitality administration management or culinary arts chef training is considered highly valuable.

In addition to an Associate of Applied Science degree, TCC offers both a Level 1 and Level 2 certification, which students can receive after earning 18 to 29 semester credit hours and 47 credit hours, respectively. TCC’s program is designed to prepare students to enter a career in commercial food preparation for hotels, restaurants and clubs. Students learn about food preparation and meal management acumen, food and beverage operations expertise and nutrition and diet therapy. Graduates also acquire well-developed communications skills, computer skills and attitudes that foster the ability to be a team player.

The Bureau of Labor Statistics forecasts a 6 to 10 percent faster-than-average growth in the job market for chefs and head cooks. Additionally, the Bureau reported more than 16,000 hospitality management jobs were created in the Dallas-Fort Worth area since August 2017.

Polegri’s visit to TCC Southeast is part of his annual trip to the United States when he holds a charity event and visits various culinary schools and high schools to discuss internships.  At this year’s fund-raising event, benefiting the Center of Hope and Union Gospel Mission, he will prepare a six-course black and white truffle dinner with wine pairings.

Other career highlights include earlier this year establishing a study abroad course with the University of the Bahamas in Nassau and in 2017 launching the course, “Expert of Italian Cuisine, Diploma Di Cuoco Italiano” in conjunction with the school Professional Training, Regione Umbria and European Union in 2017. More than 30 years ago, Polegri competed as a bodybuilder in regional and national competitions and conducted studies and participated in seminars regarding the proper diet for athletes and workers, energy needs, fitness motivation and the use and abuse of steroids.

For information about TCC’s Culinary Arts Program, contact Katrina E. Warner, Coordinator/Instructor of Culinary Arts at or 817-515-3609.