• Course Overview

    The Prue Leith Chefs Academy is very proud to offer a joint programme in partnership with Italy’s premiere culinary training institution, ALMA – La Scuola Internazionale di Cucina Italiana, in Colorno (Parma – Italy).

    In July 2011, Prue Leith and ALMA embarked upon this joint programme, the likes of which has never before been seen in the South African culinary industry.

    Qualified chefs wishing to specialise in Italian cuisine can also apply and will only complete the Italian part of the course, with introductory subjects at Prue Leith Chefs Academy.

    ALMA has identified Prue Leith Chefs Academy as the benchmark Academy in Southern Africa to include in its international network of renowned culinary partner schools.

    As part of an international network, the Prue Leith-ALMA partnership not only provides a full immersion into Italian food and culture, but also allows for greater international exposure for both the Academy and our students.

    There are two options available for this programme:


    • Approx. 10 Months ( Full Time )


    • End September Intake


    • The minimum requirement is a C&G Certificate in Food Preparation and Cooking or an equivalent qualification.
    • Successful completion of a three hour practical entrance exam (not applicable to Prue Leith graduates) to asses the candidate’s skill level.

  • First Semester

    • First Semester takes place at Prue Leith Chefs Academy
    • Italian language classes taught by the Italian Institute of Culture
    • Introductory Italian food and culture classes

    Second Semester

    Full time training in Italy at ALMA for two months

    • Italian regional cuisine and culture
    • Italian products and raw materials
    • Guest chef demonstrations by top Italian chefs from different regions
    • Cooking techniques and practice
    • Wines of Italy
    • Italian Pastry
    • Italian language
    • Visits to food production sites.


    Practical Internship in Italy

    Five month stage: Students are placed at top establishments throughout Italy to gain practical experience in the work environment. Students will be working the hours required by the operation and are provided with accommodation as well as meals, but are not paid during this period.

  • Qualifications & Examinations

    Tests can be expected throughout the course in all subjects and final exams will take place at ALMA at the end of July/August. Successful candidates will achieve the Prue Leith-ALMA Diploma in Italian Cuisine.

  • Course Times

    Course dates are subject to change, but will be confirmed three months in advance to allow for flight bookings and travel arrangements. The full course duration is approximately 10 months.

    • Introductory and language classes in South Africa: October until end November
    • Italian leg of the programme: Early January every year with graduation in July/August.

  • Visa & Work Permits

    • Students wishing to enrol for the joint program must have a valid passport.
    • Visa arrangements are facilitated by Prue Leith with ALMA’s assistance.
    • Issuing of visas is at the discretion of the relevant Italian consular office.
    • Passports must be delivered 75 days in advance of arrival in Italy.

  • Request Application Form

    I'm Interested!

    Please send me my application pack for
    ALMA “Professional Chef of Italian Cuisine” – Qualified Chefs


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