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What Types of Professions can I Pursue with a Culinary Arts Degree?

Higher Education Articles July 24, 2014

With a degree in culinary arts, there are many possibilities that one can pursue. Understanding what some of the duties are, along with the path to take, can be a complex decision. There are opportunities at home or abroad that you might want to pursue or there may be a specialty that you might want to explore, such as executive chef or chef de cuisine.

Some of the duties will include checking for freshness, coordination, and supervise cooks and other workers, develop recipes, determine presentation, plan menus, inspect supplies and equipment, as well as work areas for cleanliness and function. One might hire, train, order, and maintain all food, ingredients and supplies, and the sanitation and safety of the kitchen to ensure all standards are in compliance.

Types of Professions in Culinary Arts

Education and experience is key. One must have the knowledge of a culinary arts professional and also be able to demonstrate their skills. There are many types of culinary arts professionals and branches to choose from. At the associate’s degree level, one can become a baker or pastry chef, caterer, bartender, or food and beverage manager. This would be more for the entry-level degree holders.

At the bachelor’s degree level, one can pursue dietitian, nutritionist, food writer, food critic, restaurant manager, hotel manager, and professional chef. A bachelor’s degree covers a wider range of business and customer service skills. Classes such as human resources, marketing, finance, foundation of business, leadership, ethics, and organizational psychology will be some of the curriculum.

On the master’s degree level, one can pursue more expert levels of culinary arts, such as instructor, world cuisine, beverage operations manager, artistry, classical cuisine such as Italian or French, hospitality management, resort manager, or wine, spirit, and beverage manager.

Profession in Culinary Arts and the Salaries They Merit

Different levels of education cover various levels of culinary arts, kitchen, and business practices. For instance, you will have to learn safety and sanitation compliance laws. Different levels of education also prepare you to understand the business practices from the entry-level culinary to the upper management duties in the culinary arts profession.

Food and hospitality will always be in demand. According to the Bureau of Labor and Statistics, the field of culinary arts and the potential salaries paid can vary. The lower percentile is stated to be around $25,000 per year and the median salary around $43,000 per year with the higher percentile being around $74,000 per year. Those who want to become expert chefs and specialize can make as much as $115,000 per year.

The level of pay varies greatly not only with the level of education and experience one has, but also the region and employer. There is strong competition in the field, and being able to demonstrate impeccable skills at all levels with passion and detail will give you the upper hand. Additionally, having the strength and determination to keep up with the fast pace, long hours, and high energy levels will definitely put you at an advantage.

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