What is culinary school like

The culinary field is an exciting industry that aspiring professionals can enter into with limited schooling. There are hundreds of thousands of jobs available in every type of environment imaginable. Many choose to utilize their skills in a more traditional way by becoming chefs, but others find themselves increasingly drawn to less obvious choices. Those with culinary education might become food critics or food scientists and developers, might work in agriculture or write their own cookbook, or might start their own business or cooking television show. For this reason, culinary education often encompasses much more than just how to create delectable entrees and side dishes. The majority of institutions also offer some degree of education in communications, business, or other general education classes. If you are thinking about making a career change, consider these reasons to choose culinary school:

You Can Work in Your Desired Field While You’re in School

Many students must subject themselves to years of education before they can land a job in their chosen field. While in school, these people often search for dead-end jobs from which they will derive little passion or enjoyment, but which will pay the bills. For them, the pay-off is the “light at the end of the tunnel,” where they can start working in journalism, healthcare, or another field that requires at least a bachelor’s degree. Some students are even lucky to find a relevant internship! If you choose to make the culinary arts your career, however, you won’t have to sit around before you can get a job in the industry. Even if you can’t work as a top chef right away, by getting hired as a server in a restaurant you could very easily (and very quickly!) find yourself back in the kitchen. The benefit here (aside from having a job you enjoy) is that upon graduation you will be equipped with more skills and experience beyond what a single internship would get you.

Benefit from Job Security

While some industries will suffer job losses in future years, whether due to the computerization of positions or heavy influence from the economy, jobs in the culinary field tend to remain stable in the long-term. This is because people always need food, and as long as going out is an option, individuals, couples, and families alike will continue to eat out, get take out, and order delivery. Some restaurants are even popping up in unexpected places, such as inside grocery stores. This will only increase the need for cooks of all kinds. There are over 11.5 million people in the food preparation and related occupations industry, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. This number is indicative of the high demand for such workers, and that number is not expected to decrease between now and 2020. The job outlook is also good for other industries that culinary experts find themselves in, including writing, management, and education.

Gain a Competitive Edge through School

Technically, becoming a food service worker doesn’t require any formal education. However, those who attend culinary school, either to get an associate’s or bachelor’s degree, will have an edge over other candidates in the hiring process. Those who don’t have industry-specific education will require more on-the-job education, which can cost money and slow down operations temporarily – especially if the employee does not learn new concepts easily. By presenting a potential employer with an impressive degree from a culinary institution, you are not only demonstrating your aptitude, but guaranteeing quality work and minimizing your training.

Sources:

http://www.bls.gov/ooh/food-preparation-and-serving/cooks.htm

http://www.bls.gov/oes/current/oes350000.htm#(3)

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