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Top Culinary Arts Programs By State

Top Culinary Arts Programs By State

Alright, Chef, you must use these 3 ingredients and prepare an international cuisine lunch in less than 30 minutes: golden raisins, cows’ tongue and chocolate chips. Now, go! Hey now, pump the breaks, Guy Fieri. You have to get your degree in Culinary Arts first before you can compete!

If cooking and/or baking excites you and you enjoy learning about different culinary methods, than a degree in culinary arts is a great choice for you. Learn more below about the different types of degrees you can earn in the field of culinary arts.

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Culinary Arts

What is Culinary Arts?

Culinary Arts is the preparation, cooking and presentation of food. There are so many careers within the world of culinary arts that you are bound to find your passion and have a job that you actually love!

You can be a chef, sous chef, personal chef, restaurateur, food manager, caterer, nutritionist, food scientist, cooking school instructor, food stylist or even work on a cruise ship! A successful culinary arts career starts with passion, then school and then chasing your dreams.

What does a Chef do?

  • Take inventory of food and make orders
  • Preparation of foods
  • Cooking foods
  • Plating foods with presentation
  • Create new dishes
  • Decide on daily specials

The Pros & Cons

Pros:

  • Flexible shifts
  • Creative outlet
  • There’s never a dull moment in the kitchen!

Cons:

  • Long hours
  • Physically demanding
  • Hazardous working conditions

Occupational Outlook

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, the need for Chefs and Head Cooks is growing much faster than the average.

Quick Facts: Chefs and Head Cooks

2018 Median Pay

$48,460 per year
$23.30 per hour

Work Experience in a Related Occupation

5 years or more

Number of Jobs, 2018

139,000

Job Outlook, 2018-28

11% (Much faster than average)

Employment Change, 2018-28

15,400

Reference: https://www.bls.gov/ooh/food-preparation-and-serving/chefs-and-head-cooks.htm

Advantages of Culinary Arts School

It is true that you do not necessarily need a post-secondary degree to start your career in culinary arts. McDonalds will hire just about anyone to be a line cook but if you are seeking more than a temporary job flipping frozen burger patties, then college is your best bet. In a culinary arts school program, you will learn different varieties of cooking styles, have real hands-on training in a professional kitchen, network with professionals in your industry and greatly increase your earning potential.

Some of the techniques you will learn and master are chopping skills, making soup stocks, large kitchen production volume, food prep, classic food recipes and specialty cuisines such as French. There is nothing better than learning hands-on and putting your new knowledge to the test as you cook beautiful and delicious dishes in culinary arts school.

Sharpen your knife, grab your apron and start your new adventure today here at AmeriColleges.com.

Baking & Pastry Arts

What is Baking & Pastry Arts?

Competitive reality cooking TV shows have been popular for about the past 15 years but most recently, competitive baking shows are all the rage. There is something very beautiful about piecing together a 6 tier-cake and donning it with hand crafted fondant roses or creating cupcakes so perfect they are almost too stunning to eat. Baking and pastry arts is simply the creation of desserts. Let’s face it, Americans love sugar and they love their desserts. If you bake it, the average consumer will buy it and eat it.

What does a Baker do?

  • Prepare and make baked goods such as cakes, cookies, muffins and pies
  • Fulfill orders for customers
  • Mix dough, prepare fillings and glaze pastries
  • Decorate cakes using creative techniques

The Pros & Cons

Pros:
  • You make people happy with your product
  • Practical and hands-on work
  • You can start your own niche bakery that offers popular dietary restrictions such as gluten free or keto
Cons:
  • Physically demanding
  • Must clean and sanitize your equipment on a daily basis
  • Extra early or late shifts and long hours

Occupational Outlook

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, the need for Bakers is on the rise.

Quick Facts: Bakers

2018 Median Pay

$26,520 per year
$12.75 per hour

Work Experience in a Related Occupation

None

Number of Jobs, 2018

191,900

Job Outlook, 2018-28

6% (As fast as average)

Employment Change, 2018-28

11,100

Reference: https://www.bls.gov/ooh/production/bakers.htm

Do I need to go to college for Baking & Pastry Arts?

The answer is “it’s a really good idea”. You may be able to find a job as an apprentice baker but your starting pay will be minimal and you will have to start at the bottom of the totem pole.

A diploma degree or Associate’s degree will help jump start your career as a baker. In school, you will learn the techniques, skills and tools needed to be a successful baker. The biggest advantage to school is the hands-on, real world experience you will have access to. You will learn the fundamentals of food service from experienced bakers and receive practical training. Schooling can take anywhere from 9 months to 2 years.

Dust the flour off your apron and jump into classroom now! Find a college near you at AmeriColleges.com.

Food Service Management

What is Food Service Management?

Running a restaurant is a huge undertaking. You have to juggle a lot of responsibilities such as keeping your customers satisfied, supervising your staff, overseeing the quality and presentation of the food & beverages and managing the business aspects to ensure profit. It can be really exciting to run a restaurant but it takes hard work, organization and patience. With a degree in food service management, you can work at a 5-star restaurant, a hotel, a campus, a resort or even a cruise ship.

What does a Food Service Manager do?

A food service manager is the ringleader of restaurant or food establishment. They are responsible for all aspects of a restaurant to keep it running smoothly and properly. A manager is in charge of the staff, ordering food and supplies, overseeing food production and presentation, uphold health & safety laws, communicate with unsatisfied customers, scheduling, budgeting, payroll and overall customer service.

As the ringleader, they are the liaison between the kitchen team, the service staff, vendors and of course, the customers. Food service managers must have excellent communication skills, be highly organized and stellar customer service skills.

The Pros & Cons

Pros:
  • Great benefits (medical, vacation, sick days)
  • Paid vacations
  • Free food
  • Bonuses may be offered
Cons:
  • Long working hours including late nights and/or early mornings
  • Dealing with unsatisfied customers
  • High expectations
  • Stressful

Occupational Outlook

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, the need for food service managers is growing faster than average.

Quick Facts: Food Service Managers

2018 Median Pay

$54,240 per year
$26.08 per hour

Number of Jobs, 2018

356,400

Job Outlook, 2018-28

11% (Much faster than average)

Employment Change, 2018-28

38,500

Reference: https://www.bls.gov/ooh/management/food-service-managers.htm

How to become a Food Service Manager

Although a post-secondary degree is not required, a college education is preferred for many manager positions, especially at upscale restaurants and hotels. Experience is also a huge component but with schooling options such as night school or online, you can work and earn your college degree simultaneously.

Many schools offer a Bachelor’s degree in food service management and some even offer diplomas or certificates. During your studies, you will learn about nutrition, food preparation, sanitation, food planning, marketing, accounting and business law. Although it is not required, managers may obtain the Food Protection Manager Certification (FPMC) by passing a food safety exam. The American National Standards Institute accredits institutions that offer the FPMC. When researching your college options, ask your counselor if they are accredited by the FPMC.

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