Hi, I have only just discovered this website but have long since been an avid foodie and aspiring chef. I have many questions that I would like to have answered, please, if possible. I know that you will tell me that the hours are long, you are on your feet all day, your back will ache and you never get Christmas off. Those are the perks of the job, I guess, and if I had an issue with those then I wouldn’t be pursuing a career with food. The questions I ask may seem obvious or petty but I really would like to know everything. I love to cook deserts and bake all things sweet and savoury which made me look down the path of becoming a pastry chef. But, what I want to ask you all is – can you do a commercial cookery apprenticeship and then steer yourself in the direction of pastry? Or is it necessary to do an apprenticeship as a pastry cook? I have big dreams; like I’m sure you all do, of one day opening my own café/restaurant/patisserie. Can a pastry chef, open and own a restaurant? I live in a city in Northern Queensland (Australia) where there isn’t really any way of following the pastry path. So, in your opinions where in Australia would be best to try and find an apprenticeship? Is Australia really the best place for me to train or would I be better off moving overseas and gaining the qualification? I also considered joining the navy and getting the qualification that way. My second dilemma is culinary schools vs. apprenticeships. I would love to attend a culinary school (if it weren’t for the fees that are attached) – when you “graduate” from such a school are you qualified to work as a cook or is there a requirement to further that education with an apprenticeship? Also, does attending a culinary school better educate their students compared to someone who completed an apprenticeship? I know that it is rare but I’d love to make a name for myself. I am willing to put in the hard yards and work for years on end to do so. I am passionate about food and cooking is the best pick me up there is. All I want is to be able to put my creativity onto a plate. Thanks so much in advance. I would really appreciate any answers that you can give me.