The beginnings of the direction Gastronomy are in the distant academic year 1989/1990, when the foundations of today’s modern study program in the field of gastronomy were laid. The Faculty of Tourism and Hospitality – Ohrid for the first time opens the field of Gastronomy as a VI / 1 degree of studies in 1989/90, with a duration of studies of two years or four semesters. The study program for the field of Gastronomy was revised in 2003, and later again in 2009 and 2012 in accordance with the tendencies that are present in the teaching-scientific process in the world. Throughout its 30-year existence, the Gastronomy study program has been upgraded and modernized, always following the world trends in this field, both in higher education and in practice. With that, the Faculty of Tourism and Hospitality in Ohrid, managed to build a modern study program, which profiles highly professional staff who can effectively deal with the challenges in this profession. According to the latest accreditation of this study program from 2017, the studies in Gastronomy are four years, in eight semesters.
Gastronomy as a specific catering activity occupies an extremely important role in the overall socio-economic development of our country given the fact that it is characterized by a very centuries-old gastronomic tradition and strong hospitality. World trends are imperatively striving for a synergy of tourism and food. Food has an increasing weight in meeting the needs of today’s modern tourist, which will be increasingly important for the development of tourism in the Republic of Macedonia.
The study program Gastronomy is in function of using modern methods in work activities, ability to learn about new scientific results and their implementation as applied solutions. Competitiveness in the gastronomic market requires knowledge of the basics of gastronomic issues, nutrition and its impact on human health and ability to work, food and beverage technology, diet regimens, standards to be implemented in the catering industry, food hygiene and microbiology of food and prevention of food poisoning, cooking techniques and dishes to be used to preserve the nutritional value of food, new foods, advantages and disadvantages of these foods, socio-economic aspects of nutrition, traditional food, national and international cuisine, legislation and regulations in the tourism and catering business, as well as the entire process of managing the catering food production.
In order to achieve these goals, in addition to theoretical teaching, we are constantly working on creating opportunities for students to gain a variety of practical knowledge from all areas of the hotel and restaurant industry. This goal means realization of the practical work in the HOREKA industry. The Faculty of Tourism and Hospitality – Ohrid, based on the adopted Elaborate for the study program, in cooperation with the hotel-restaurant industry organizes every year mandatory practical classes for students, as well as clinical classes by lecturers – experts in the field, who convey their valuable practical experiences in a direct way. In addition, we are constantly working on cooperation with related scientific and educational institutions and businesses in the country and abroad. This results in numerous agreements in this regard. Participants in this cooperation are the teaching staff, students, industry representatives, as well as other business entities and institutions. For example, in the 2018/19 academic year, based on the cooperation agreement with the higher education institution for gastronomy – Jess de Forrest from Lille, France, twice prof. Christoph Dover in front of the students from the respective directions, as well as representatives of the Hotel-restaurant industry from Ohrid, held master classes in cooking, in the cooking cabinet of FTU – Ohrid.
The Faculty of Tourism and Hospitality in Ohrid has modernly equipped rooms intended for preparing and serving food: kitchen and restaurant. These premises are intended primarily for conducting practical classes in the professional subjects of the study program Gastronomy, as well as serving and selling soft drinks and hot drinks for the needs of students and teaching staff. The Faculty of Tourism and Hospitality in Ohrid has rooms intended for cooking and serving food: kitchen and restaurant. Within the practical teaching within the Faculty, students under the supervision of the professor constantly participate in the complete organization and performance of numerous caterers that the Faculty organizes on the occasion of various events, such as conferences, conferences, projects, competitions and the like. Thus, the students together with the subject professor constantly prepare complete meals for the needs of different subjects. For example, some of them in 2018 and 2019 are:
- The Economic Chamber of R. Macedonia (December 2018),
- Association for Protection of Animals and Environment (May 2018),
- Balcan Summer University Program – Summer School (September 2018),
- Evaluation Commission, UKLO Rectorate (October 2019),
- Technical Faculty – Bitola (October 2018),
- German Society for International Cooperation (May 2018),
- Alfa Group export-import (September 2019).
In 2018, on two occasions, the students under the guidance of the subject teacher participated in competitions organized by Gastromak, in Stip, where they won a gold and silver medal and Gastromak, Strumica, where they won a silver medal.
All this speaks of a growing study program that should continue to actively contribute to the development and modernization of the tourism product of RS. Macedonia.