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Daniela Mocofan, February 2016 Student of the Month


Daniela working at the Houston Food BankName: Daniela Mocofan
Hometown: Bucharest Romania
Current City: Spring TX
Course of Study: Elite Diplome de Patisserie
Year of Graduation: July 2016
Personal Motivational Motto: To have a perfect 10, my idol is Nadia Comaneci, she was the first gymnast with a perfect 10 score

Pursuing your dreams isn’t always easy. We can face many challenges along the way but keeping the end goal in mind makes it worth the trial. One of the obstacles some people face is moving from where they grew up to another town, city, state and even their country.

Daniela, one of our current students, says, “I came to USA in September 2007, and for me was a big change. The weather was different from my country, the weather was too warm. After 8 years, the weather is ok, summers are a little to warm, but the winter is perfect. I did not speak English, but I understood it a bit, so I took ESL classes. After 6 months, I started to work for Marshals, as a sale floor person, and I was working for them for 6 years. In the morning I was going to school, and in the evening, I went to work. It was 2 hard years, but I managed school, job, and family. I didn’t drive, my husband drive me to work, and school. I managed to take my drivers license after one year. In the USA every thing was new for me, culture, language, food, but I made it!”

When we asked Daniela what inspired her follow the path of baking and pastry she said, “I love to bake, baking makes me happy. I did not bake in my country, after I move to USA I started to bake because I did not like the cake I found at the store”. Based on this we could say the quote “Be the change you want to see” is quite fitting for her.

Daniela's daughter with friends in the Marine Corps
Daniela’s daughter, in the Marine Corp (2nd left to right)

Although it’s her dream to be a chef, Daniela tells us it wasn’t an easy decision to start school. ” I am a widow, my husband past away last year in may and I did not have money for school. After, I started the school in May, I lost my job and had difficulty paying my bills. In September, I started a new job as a caregiver at a nursery home. I am working nights sift, evening school, and sleep in the morning. For,the last 2.5 months I was working every night, this thing will help me to keep my house.

I don’t have to much money, but it will be enough to cover my bills and school. Always, you need to follow your dream no matter how hard it is. I love to bake and I will be an amazing chef. It is never late to follow your dreams“. Not only is she driven about her future but tells us with great pride about her daughter which joined the Marines. A proud mother who faces difficulties but as any motivated individual she comes to school with a great attitude and wants to learn more. “At CIL, I’ve learned how to be professional. I’ve learned a lot of new things different that I do at home, exciting, and amazing”.

Getting to know Daniela and hearing her story is what astonishes us with her. I had the pleasure of volunteering with her at the Houston Food Bank with other students in the process of making meals for children. Daniela was full of energy and mentioned to us that she wanted to participate in more voluntary work. Her drive is one of her highlighting qualities and her kindness adds the cherry on top. We are excited to see her graduate in July and see what other amazing things she can accomplish as nothing stops her from her vision.

Frosted strawberry and cream cake   Cupcakes and eclairs

Chocolate and cream layered cake   Chocolate cake