"Traditional" Culinary School vs Tech School

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Joined Mar 2, 2013
Hello all!

So, I have a dilemma.  After being in the industry for 8 years, I'm finally ready to go to culinary school.  I've worked in fine dining for about 5 years and I am currently general manager of a coffee shop.  I'm ready to get back to the kitchen and I feel this will help me tremendously.  The problem, however, is choosing a school.  I'm married and my wife has a good job and is happy where she is, so moving isn't an option.  I have to keep my current job, so it will pretty much be part time school and will be commuting.  I live in middle Georgia and all the schools I'm looking at are in Atlanta.  The big question is, if I get a tech school associates degree and then transfer to either Le Cordon Bleu or Georgia State for a bachelors, will this look worse than a full degree from LCB?  I'm not going to lie, money is an issue, which makes the tech school option very attractive.  Any feedback will be greatly appreciated.
 
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Joined Jan 22, 2012
Unless you go to CIA or Johnson and Wales it really doesnt matter where you go from most employers perspectives.   Go where its cheaper.
 
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Joined Jun 10, 2009
I agree with Twyst.  If you can't go to CIA or Johnson & Wales go where's it's cheaper.  I attended Le Cordon Bleu and can't find a job to save my life.  None of the classes I took there transfer and I feel I've wasted valuable educational monies.  The only job I could get 6 years after leaving school (long story) was on a food truck - and was edged out because the chef hired a male graduate from CIA.  
 
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Joined May 11, 2001
As far as I know, the only degree-granting culinary schools are CIA and Johnson and Wales. All others give diplomas or certificates.  Le Cordon Bleu has a Masters program, but you have to already have an undergrad degree or a Grand Diplome for that, I believe.

What is your professional cooking experience to date? If you have never worked back of the house, I suggest you do that at any level before you proceed with culinary school. A culinary degree is no guarantee of success in the field.
 
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Joined Sep 9, 2011
@chefjune.  I live in El Paso, TX and graduated from the local community college and received a one year certificate and an associate degree of applied science in culinary arts.  I believe I got a good education with a community college price.  They have a great program there and it's all about what you put into it.  
 
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Joined Oct 8, 2011
After years of experience I went to a tech school but was less then impressed overall.  Now that I have spent a year and too much money for no degree I start CIA in a month.  I should have just done this to start with.
 
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Joined Apr 17, 2006
You didn't say what you did in the fine dining field. Knowing that would help us give you better advice I think.
 
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