studying abroad

Discussion in 'Professional Chefs' started by godfather_chef, May 16, 2006.

  1. godfather_chef

    godfather_chef

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    i was wondering what the advantages and disadvantages are of studying abroad. the chef i work for now says that it would be a great experience for me to learn different cultures, languages, and, most importantly, food. i was really thinking of going to france and italy for 2 years each. the only 'problem' i have is that i am currently engaged to a girl who doesn't want to leave georgia, and doesn't want to learn 2 more languages. she says that if she could find a job, then she would be more than happy to go. i'm not worried about a place to live or work, because chef has friends that he said would 'hook me up' so to speak. any input on this would be greatly appreciated.
     
  2. crazytatt

    crazytatt

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    DO IT! DO IT!

    If you and the girl are in good standing you have noting to loose.

    I speak from experience, DO IT! Even if you do not get into the ultimate position, it is worth the venture soley for the life experience. if it is something YOU want to do, don't let ANYTHING stop you(I speak from experience on this too)! if your girl is down, all the better. If she can't get jazzed about moving to a different country, and experiencing new cultures, food, people, history, money, beliefs, life and love...then I don't know what to tell ya. Even if you move overseas and come back a year later, would you regret it? Life is too short. The world is too big. It's up to you to find a happy medium.

    Best of luck! If all else fails... tell her the shopping is great in France, and Italy is soooooooooo romantic!?
     
  3. godfather_chef

    godfather_chef

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    okay, i've decided that i want to go, i'm just kind of afraid to take that first step. any thoughts?
     
  4. crazytatt

    crazytatt

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    That is the hardest part.

    Seriously, do not let things overwhelm you, it is better to try and fail, then to of never tried at all. If you have a homebase here, you have NOTHING to loose. No matter what happens, it will be a life changing, and eye opening, experience. Besides, don't you want some good stories to tell the grand kids one day?

    I speak from experience, it CAN be scary, but you find your niche. You might want to curl up in a little ball, and cry yourself to sleep at first( It's O.K., you are not EMO), but just embrace the experience...you know that you can always go "home" if you want. The world is to big, don't limit yourself to anything. H**L, I went to see family in ENG., then ended up living in Holland for 3 years...worse things could happen.:look:
     
  5. godfather_chef

    godfather_chef

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    my main concern is that i've herad that it is very difficult to get a 'work permit' in france and italy if you're not a citizen. i'm currently studying both languages, so that shouldn't be too much of an issue. thanks for the input, TATT
     
  6. plongeur

    plongeur

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    Yeah, do it. There's loads of jobs for cooks in France - check http://www.anpe.fr for details (and to test out your French at the same time!).
    What does your girlfriend do? There's a demand for people teaching English, but not as big as most English-speaking foreigners think there is. But if she's prepared to wash dishes she'll have no problems.
    Mail me if I can offer any specific advice.
     
  7. even stephen

    even stephen

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    If your chef is from Italy, he should be able to hook you
    up. Lots of cooks are paid under the table all over the
    world. Just make sure you take it seriously and come to
    the table with something to offer. I worked in Milan for a
    while. In house ice production, in house cured meats,
    family meal twice a day, Chef had been there over 35 years.
    Some line cooks over 20 years. Not the most exciting food
    in the world but prepared perfect. When you get there,
    network like crazy. Go to Rome, Go to an olive harvest.
    Go to Venice. It might be better to go alone. Get to as many
    of the out of the way places you can. Portugal is a must.
    Greece. At your age you cannot deny this opportunity. Once
    you are married, which I can't recommend at you age, things
    become more difficult, with kids, even more difficult. Right
    now you, and you alone, own your life. Don't pass it up.
    Once you get done over their, explore south and central
    America. Eat your way through your twenties. I have three
    kids and a wife and don't work in this field for the money, if you
    know what I mean. Once you settle down, you can remember
    your travels by preparing the meals you had. I envy you.
    I won't get back on the road for another 15+ years. Also,
    take care! The worlds not as nice as it used to be.
     
  8. steve a

    steve a

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    Here's a thought that might be helpful. Canada; specifically Quebec. You've got your French and North American rolled up into one.

    And it should be close enough that your significant other doesn't fall off the edge of the earth.

    As the others have posted, GO. I was fortunate enough to have lived and worked in Europe for nine years. Plus, I managed to work around the Mediterranean for another four years. GO... enjoy. Don't worry about becoming fluent in a language, but give it your best shot.

    Ciao,