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NECC Opens Lupoli Family Culinary Arts Institute in Haverhill with Noncredit Courses This Fall

Submitted by on September 1, 2020 – 7:46 pm


Man with glasses and wearing chef coat cuts an onion.

Denis Boucher, program manager, for the new NECC Lupoli Family Culinary Arts Institute in Haverhill

The opening of Northern Essex Community College’s Lupoli Family Institute of Culinary Arts this fall will help downtown Haverhill, already known for its many dining options, grow as a mecca for foodies.

The institute will occupy two floors in The Heights, a newly built 10-story luxury building on Merrimack Street with sweeping views of the Merrimack River. The space will include classrooms, laboratories, and state-of-the-art kitchens and offer noncredit community courses as well as credit programs in Culinary Arts and Hospitality Management.

The space will open softly this fall with a series of 30 noncredit culinary arts courses, beginning with Summer Herbs from Garden to Kitchen on Sept. 15.

Social distancing will be practiced, with classroom classes limited to six people and demonstration classes limited to four.

“We couldn’t wait to get started and we wanted to do it safely,” said Sandy Zappala, program manager, NECC Center for Corporate & Community Education. “There’s increased interest in growing your own food and cooking at home, and we’ve tailored our courses with that in mind.”

There are many options for home chefs to explore ethnic cuisine, including Latin American, Indian, Italian, and Asian; baking courses covering cupcake design and  cookie decorating; and courses for those who like to entertain at home, such as Food and Wine Pairing, Crowd-Pleasing Appetizers, and Creating Charcuterie Board for the Holidays.

Those with a sense of adventure may be interested in Sausage Making, taught by Kristen Carbone of Haverhill’s Carbone’s Kitchen and aspiring farmers can consider Organic Home Gardening and Growing Herbs.

You can find a full list of noncredit culinary arts courses here. And, if you have questions, you can reach out to Zappala at

Eventually, the institute will also be home base to two credit programs: the college’s Culinary Arts Certificate and Associate Degree in Hospitality Management. Students enrolled in those programs are studying online this semester since the college has moved almost fully to online delivery, but the plan is to offer onsite courses in the spring of 2021.

According to Denis Boucher, program manager for the institute, the 29-credit Culinary Arts Certificate is geared toward people who want to prepare quickly—in under a year—for careers in restaurants, hotels and more. Students will develop skills in applied culinary techniques, advanced baking, classic world cuisine, and more.

The 63-credit Associate Degree in Hospitality Management focuses on an understanding of business operations and can be transferred to a bachelor’s degree program in hospitality or a related major.

Both programs require an internship, and Boucher anticipated many students may get hired as a result.

The college is planning to host a community open house as soon as COVID-19 restrictions are lifted. “We have kitchens equipped with the very best in a building with an amazing view,” said Boucher. “It’s an inspiring place to cook and learn, and I can’t wait to show it off.”

For more information about credit programs, contact Boucher at

Northern Essex Community College has campuses in both Haverhill and Lawrence. It offers approximately 60 associate degree and certificate programs as well as hundreds of noncredit courses designed for personal enrichment and career growth.  Each year, 6,000 students are enrolled in credit associate degree and certificate programs on the Haverhill and Lawrence campuses; and another 2,000 take noncredit workforce development and community education classes on campus, and at businesses and community sites across the Merrimack Valley.  For more information, visit the website at or call 978-556-3700.