Whether you love to cook and want to learn the tricks of the masters or you are interested in becoming a world-famous chef like those seen on the popular cooking shows, a great place to start is at one of the cooking schools found around the country. However, just like choosing any other type of school, there are some things that you need to know. If you know anyone who is interested in attending cooking school, then use these simple guidelines to help them choose the school best suited for them.
- Admissions criteria. When looking at possible cooking schools to attend, make sure that you know what the admissions criteria are and that you can fulfill them. Often schools, even cooking schools, will require a minimum G.P.A. as well as an example of your cooking prowess.
- Accreditation. Whenever looking at a school, cooking or otherwise, you need to make sure that it is properly accredited. What this means is that the training you receive at the school will follow general guidelines that are accepted fairly widely.
- Reputation. What is the reputation of the school? Whether we like to admit it or not, reputations carry a lot of weight in the world. Later on when looking for a career in the cooking field, the reputation of the school that you studied at will often carry more weight than your final grade point average.
- Cost. As always, one of the primary concerns about any school is the cost. Make sure that you know what the total cost will be for attending the school before making your final decision. While looking, see if there are any scholarships available from the school and any grants as well.
- Know the job. If you are looking to enter a career in the culinary field, then one of the things that the school you choose will need to do is help you understand the business side of things as well. The school will have to be able to accurately teach you what the difference between a fry cook, sous-chef, and chef. Keep in mind that just because a job listing may advertise for a chef, often what they are looking for is more along the lines of a short order cook or a fry cook.
- Course of study. What is the course of study offered by the school? Do they teach more than one cooking style? Do they teach regionally favorite dishes, or dishes that are favored the world over? Will they teach you the basics of being able to create your own dishes?