Finding My Future (Getting Started)

Discussion in 'General Culinary School Discussions' started by chinds85, Apr 15, 2005.

  1. chinds85


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    I'm going to place a bulleted list, of sorts, of what I'm looking for in a culinary school and what it can bring me post-graduation along with explanations of each bullet. Here goes:

    -Excellent and respected education program.
    I'm looking for a school whose good reputation will give me a competitive edge when I'm graduating and looking for a good, high-end job. The main reason this is my concern is that I will need money to pay back student loans (below).

    -Financial aid.
    I need a school that has a good reputation for giving out lots of financial aid. The ability to pay will be on my own shoulders, and I will most likely need to have a full-ride with scholarships/grants/loans unless they find me a job or paid internship that can help to pay the difference.

    -Co-ed housing or off-campus housing aid
    My girlfriend Amber will likely go where I am going after college, if we are still together. If this is the case, I would like help from my school so that she can live with me and work while I attend classes.

    -Mutli-dimension education.
    I am slightly more interested in the culinary arts, but I do not want to completely exclude restaurant management from the picture.

    So... those are my basic criteria for my school and the reasons why. The school NEEDS TO SATISFY THE FIRST THREE if I am to attend. Also, I'm going to include a couple of questions for the veterans/current students:

    Based on the above criterions, what school/schools would you recommend?

    What would you say is career path within the culinary arts that I would find most rewarding (to my bank account)?

    Do you have a fast-track success story? (For example, landing 100,000/year within two years of graduation) If so, share... how did you do it?

    Do culinary schools help to place you into career-paths post-graduation? If your school helped you find a job, was it rewarding?

    That's all I have for now. Thanks everyone for your time and for helping a budding cook get off to the right start. :chef:
  2. mikeb


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    Professional Pastry Chef
    Good luck getting 100,000 grand within two years, regardless of occupation. With cooking, its not happening. The most lucrative (financially) cooking related position is Executive Chef of a large hotel, or Corporate Chef for a chain. Very few cooks will ever make a 6 figure income in their careers...

    Cooking IS NOT the career for you if you're interested in making money. Cooks are all very poor until you become a Chef. You won't become a Chef without years of experience. Graduates of culinary school often end up working for low wages (10 dollars per hour is around average for someone entering a fine dining restaurant).
  3. chinds85


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    Hey Mike, thanks for responding so quickly. I know a bit about the field when it comes to how much a typical chef is paid. That question was more for the **** of it than anything else...

    I see myself going to Culinary School in Fall 2007. I am told that an associates degree is better than a bachelors, but please correct me if I'm wrong there. I hope that within 2 years of leaving Culinary School I'll be able to land a job that makes over 35,000 a year. Is this reasonable?

    Please let me know, thanks.

    Here's an ideal timeline. I do not know much about the job market, only about wages, so tell me if this is reasonable, and if not, tell me what I should be expecting:

    2007: Enter Culinary School
    2009 (Or 2011 if I get a B.): Leave and get the best job I can find.
    6-Months-Later: Start paying back loans. (Ugh.)
    2011 (Or 2013): Get a "Chef" position. (30,000/year +)
  4. doctorchef


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    Dear Future Culinarian- Well were to begin, The best advice I can give you is to go to a good Community College or a good Technicial School. Stay away from all private schools they are business's not schools. Then go to a good 4-year Hospitality program. Make sure they are regionally accredited not nationally. With a culinary degree starting salary of 8-12 dollars per hour. 4 year degree between 30K-38K. A good apprentice program might be a good choice. If you need more advice call me at 407.855.5880 ext 22865-Chef GMHarris EdS, MS, CEC, CCE, AAC