I'm a senior in high school, and I decided that I want to be a chef, or have a culinary career. I didn't do all the research I needed too, and so I decided that the Culinary Institute of America was the school that I had go to . They require six months of experience working in a restaurant before you can attend, and I'm working in a nice, albeit small restaurant as a dishwasher/prep cook. I'm absolutely sure that I want to be a chef, and be in this industry. However I've been reading through a bunch of the posts here and it seems that a lot of the people here don't think that school is worth it. However, the head chef where I work thinks I should go to school, and another woman I know who was a chef told me the same thing, because of the job opportunities both felt they had lost by not having a degree from a culinary school. Another caterer I know also encouraged me to attend a culinary school. BUT...I realize that school costs a lot of money, and cooks don't make that much money. I also realize that experience is more important than a culinary degree. I'm very, very confused and just wondering if I could get everybody's thoughts on this?