Alumni Spotlight: Daniela Mocofan


July 23, 2018


Daniela Mocofan not only graduated twice from Culinary Institute Lenotre, she was also recently accepted as a member of the highly respected Les Dames d’Escoffier International! Congratulations Daniela! We are very proud to have been a part of your culinary journey!

First Name/Last   Daniela Mocofan

Hometown   Bucharest

Current City   Houston

Course of Study   Associate Degree Baking & Pastry Arts and Culinary Arts

Year of Graduation   July 2017 Baking & Pastry Arts, May 2018 Culinary Arts

“Never give up, you are never too old to reach your dream”  

What is your story?

Because of my heritage, and culture, it was custom to learn to cook as a girl. My mom taught me how to cook, bake and do preserves at an early age. I started to enjoy doing this with my family, and later with my friends.

What did you do before culinary school? Why did you choose CIL? What are you doing now? 

 Before CIL, I was a housekeeper and was not happy with my life. Knowing my love for baking, a friend of mine told me about this school and advised me to give it a try. And here I am now, having two degrees from CIL and now part of Les Dames d’Escoffier Intl, a dream for me!

 What inspired you to become a chef? How was your journey to become a chef? 

My mom inspired me she was awesome, she had a lot of love for her family. She was always making something special for holiday, gathering everybody around the dinner table.

My journey was definitely not easy. I was fired three days after I started at CIL. This event motivated me even more to reach my dream, failure was not an option.

How would you describe the impact of your courses at CIL on your life?

They changed the idea I had about food generally. When I first started school, I was so lost the first semester! I understood what I was doing at home was totally different from what we learned at CIL. The institute gave me the knowledge I needed to become a real chef.

“Set your goals high in this way you will reach your actual goal.”

What is the best memory you keep from the school?

It was probably being the student of the month in February 2016 or when I won a bronze medal in March 2017 at the first Chocolate Showpiece Competition. I was very proud of it!

What are your future projects? 

I would like to have my own team, as an executive chef in Pastry & Baking.

What is your signature dish, the one you love the most? 

I love to do two, or three-flavored mousses in the same dessert.

Any words of wisdom or advice for our current and future students who dream of a success story like yours? 

Set your goals high in this way you will reach your actual goal.

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