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Tips for Working While Attending Culinary School

by Olivia Tacelli
CulinaryEd Columnist
May 19, 2011

Working Through Culinary School

Culinary school can be an exciting adventure and a practical step on the journey to a career, but it can also be a serious commitment of your time and money. It's up to you how you're going to fit it into your existing life. You may have a job you want to keep while you get your degree, or you may need to stay employed in order to finance your education. Either way, there are several options for culinary arts students who want to earn their degree while working full or part-time.

Choose a Traditional or Online Culinary Degree Program

It may be as simple as finding a program that works with your schedule. If you have a day job, find a program that offers evening classes. Conversely, If you need to work at night, look for a day schedule. An online culinary degree program can work very well if you want to keep the job and schedule you already have. Although there are set deadlines for assignments, lectures and exams happen on your time frame whether you work weekends or weekdays, days or evenings.

Get Paid to Learn Culinary Arts

Imagine getting paid to work in a great New York restaurant before you've even graduated. Many New York culinary degree programs require externships where you work in a professional kitchen setting. Not only can you get real life food service experience, some externships may even offer financial assistance that can help you through school.

Working and Still Need Help Paying for Culinary School?

Many culinary schools offer financial aid in the form of loans, grants, scholarships, and work-study positions and can steer you in the direction of federal and state assistance. Get in touch with the financial aid department at schools you're interested in and they can tell you what's available. There are also culinary associations and private foundations that offer grants and scholarships such as the James Beard Foundation.

Working while going to school will take some creativity, a quality that can also come in handy once you've graduated and are looking for ways to use your culinary arts degree.



About the Author

Olivia Tacelli is a freelance writer specializing in all things culinary. She has been a chef and caterer for 18 years, and has run her own whole foods cooking business, The Olive Tree, for 8 years.

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            Culinary Arts
            • Received the 2015 and 2013 “Cooking School of the Year” Award of Excellence from the International Association of Culinary Professionals (IACP).
            • Accredited by the Accrediting Commission of Career Schools and Colleges (ACCSC).
            • Externship opportunities are available at numerous famous New York City restaurants.
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            Professional Culinary Arts
            • Hands-on culinary education with focused attention on each student
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            Culinary Arts and Food Services
            • Has been training students in the culinary arts since 1946.
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            AAS Degree in Culinary Arts
            • Culinary Arts program includes the 3-week Farm To Table® Experience, where students gain a direct, in-depth look at where food comes from.
            • Numerous scholarship opportunities and financial aid are available to students who qualify.
            • Accreditation from the Accrediting Council for Continuing Education and Training (ACCET), and the Council on Occupational Education (COE).
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            Associate of Science in Culinary Arts

            Since 1977, Keiser University has maintained a practical, hands-on approach to career-focused education to help our students achieve their personal and professional goals.  Our student-centered approach remains at the foundation of the Keiser University mission and continues to attract students who prefer a more personal learning experience. 

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            Get the experience you need to succeed in the exciting and fast growing culinary field at Keiser University - Center for Culinary Arts. We offer the flexibility of day or evening classes, experienced faculty, and small class sizes for plenty of personalized attention. Internship opportunities and financial aid are available for students who qualify.
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