Hardest Thing about Culinary School

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Joined Jan 27, 2010
I haven't gone through any culinary schools. I have read the posts here and i felt with a mixed inspiration but fear.

Can anyone suggest what's the best school to enroll?
 
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Joined Oct 3, 2006
I haven't gone through any culinary schools. I have read the posts here and i felt with a mixed inspiration but fear.

Can anyone suggest what's the best school to enroll?
I get asked this alot... and the answer is going to vary depending on you.  What works for me does not work for everyone else.  I strongly suggest you research the schools in your area and get a comfortable feel for what is going to work for you.  Do not buy into hype or what the sales rep tells you.  Decide for yourself where you feel the most comfortable at, as it will be your education, not the sales guy's.  Look into community colleges also.  The quality of education is on par with the big name schools for the most part (There really isnt much variation on how to chop an onion) for ALOT less. 
 
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Joined Aug 3, 2010
The hardest part about being in culinary school right now is trying to be there and with my father who is now in paliative care.  He now has weeks to live with lung and brain cancer.  But, one of the main reasons that I am completing my apprenticeship and in school is because of him so I am very determined not to give up.  My marks have been excellent to this point and all of my Chefs and teachers have been very understanding.

To give someone the respect of calling them Chef, whether they have their CCFC or not, is second nature to me...even when I am older than they are.  I have been working in the field for 3 years and am thankful every day that a Chef will stand beside me and encourage me to learn the "why" of what I am doing and not just produce, produce, produce.  Someone recently said to me "isn't it so wonderful that retired chefs are willing to come and teach so that you will benefit by their experience".  I say a huge, thankful yes to that....and to the chefs on here who are so encouraging.

I am also thankful that our class is totally made up of all apprentices....people who know that they want to be there and not that Mommy and Daddy are paying for them to be there.  We have been out in the field and know how important experience is and have more drive to get what we want and need to succeed.  We have become a very tight knit dozen.  Just like a real working kitchen should be; you become close very quickly.
 
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Joined Jan 25, 2006
Hardest thing: Matriculation.  Sticking with it.  Culinary school is not like standard classes in academia, nor is it for every one.  For those thinking of enrolling, keep this thought when reviewing choices of schools: "It's not what the school puts into you, but what yoy put into school".

I attended, and graduated from two of the country's top culinary schools.  At school "A", we were required to address our instuctors as "Mr.", not "Chef".  This is actually the traditional and respectful way to address one's superior in the kitchen.  At school "B", the standard practice was to address the culinary instructors as "Chef", and then their last name; although it was not required.  Being a little older than most of my fellow students, and knowing several of the chef-instructors personally, I just used their first name.  And, it was always accepted.

"Seasonings Greetings"
 
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Joined Jun 17, 2008
The hardest part for me were some of the other students. Sometimes you would get paired up with someone lazy or someone who doesn't really want to be there and you wind up carrying their weight for them. Dishes sucked. I always ended up washing while some people spent their time kissing up to chefs or screwing around. Jealousy and gossip were problems too. Not all the students chose to compete in various contests and salons. Those that did compete often had to deal with those who didn't talking crap about them behind their backs. Just petty jealousy.
 
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Joined Apr 3, 2010
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Joined Nov 16, 2010
I did find anything hard in school. I love the classes adn the challenges. It is when you love the things that you do that will make your life and excitement. 

I
 
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Joined May 4, 2010
wash the f'in dishes, pick a broom ffs, do something manly - I'm a man and I'm embarassed by how many 18-25 men are happy to sit in grimy, dirty kitchen with their hand on the mop thinking to themselves... it's okay that i sit here doing nothing... No Wonder the military is such a revalation to the majority of the male population... it teaches them to work for a living... 
 
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Joined Mar 30, 2011
The hardest part for me were some of the other students. Sometimes you would get paired up with someone lazy or someone who doesn't really want to be there and you wind up carrying their weight for them. Dishes sucked. I always ended up washing while some people spent their time kissing up to chefs or screwing around. Jealousy and gossip were problems too. Not all the students chose to compete in various contests and salons. Those that did compete often had to deal with those who didn't talking crap about them behind their backs. Just petty jealousy.

This is the problem I am encountering and I am only 2 quarters into school.  I have close to 15 years of experience working in the industry from dishwasher to managerial positions, from prep cook, line cook, sous chef to bartender. I thought at one time I was going to be an English teacher, and have degrees in both English and History, but realized I'm not cut out for academia. Food and the industry have been my life otherwise. My skill level is beyond what my classmates are at seeing most have never even stepped one half a foot into a professional kitchen. That said, I tend to be a humble person when I approach my choice to enter school and I am there to become classically trained and open the networking doors.   I constantly run into students that simply don't understand why they are there, have no passion, literally could burn water if they could etc. etc. etc.  That said when I am involved in the group work I get asked question after question after question that I have no place in answering in reality as I'm not the chef, just a peer. I help where I can with my knowledge but I would rather see them learn it themselves then me hold their hands half of the way.  To me that is frustrating, otherwise I am glad I have made the decision to pursue this education.  
 
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Joined Apr 4, 2011
The getting there each day. But  for me that was my job,that's how I looked at it until I graduated. The diffrent personally in the kitchen some times the not so much team work. 

But all in all I wouldn't wanted it any other way. I truly earned my title as a Chef.

Chef2blue
 
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