How to Select the Right Culinary Degree Program near Auburn University Alabama
Deciding to become a chef and enrolling in a culinary school near Auburn University AL is a great career choice. Not only will you learn how to create incredible meals or prepare lavish desserts, you’ll also be able to earn a nice income doing it. But now that you’ve decided, just how do you undertake choosing a culinary institute? What criteria should you review and compare among the cooking schools before reaching your ultimate choice ? Keep in mind that you must select the right program and degree in order to be successful in the hospitality and restaurant industry. There are a multitude of options to select from, beginning with a diploma or certificate program and advancing to earning an undergraduate as well as a graduate degree. You may attend a small culinary college, an online college, or enroll in a renowned culinary institute that provides advanced degrees.
The kind of credential and school you select will probably be dependent upon the amount of time and money you can afford to invest, as well as your ultimate career goal. After you have decided what your main area of interest and budget are, you can begin evaluating the culinary arts colleges that satisfy your initial requirements. Depending on the degree and type of culinary school you decide on, you may be working as a professional chef or cook in as little as six months. Obviously more advanced degrees and training will take longer, which we will address shortly. So before we dig more into the method of choosing a school, let’s speak a little more about the degree and culinary school choices that are available near Auburn University AL.
Cooking College Degree Programs
Just as with a number of other trades or professions in Auburn University AL, there are a variety of degree programs that are available in the culinary arts. At the most elemental level, you can join a nearby cooking class, which are more informal in nature and can run from just a few hours to several weeks. Often a certificate or a diploma is awarded at the time of completion. They can be broad in nature, such as demonstrating how to cook Italian meals, or they can be rather specific and concentrate on one dish, such as Crepes Suzette. Naturally if you are looking for a more conventional education suitable for a career in the restaurant industry, you will most likely choose to enroll in a degree program. With a degree program, you will be required to devote considerably more time.
- Associate’s Degrees can take as long as 6 months to two years to finish.
- Bachelor’s Degrees generally require as much as 4 years of education.
- Masters Degrees can take an additional 2 years or more after attaining a Bachelor’s.
Additional advanced educational alternatives may be available, including Doctoral or specialized programs offered by culinary arts institutes. Probably the most important point to keep in mind when determining which degree to strive for is ensuring that it furnishes the education and credential needed to advance your ultimate career objectives.
Kinds of Culinary Arts Institutes
When you have made your choice regarding the type of instruction and degree that you wish to pursue, you can start your search for the cooking school, college or institute that offers it. As an example, if your desire is to train to be a chef specializing in French cuisine, then obviously you will focus on those colleges that furnish the proper training. Or you can select a school based on its ranking or other factors (we’ll cover several of those later) and then pick the most suitable degree program offered that is compatible with your career goals in Auburn University AL. However you make your choice, culinary arts schools typically fall under 3 different categories:
- Cooking Schools. Certain cooking schools do offer degree programs, but generally they offer certificates or diplomas. Their programs tend to be more focused in nature, and they can range anywhere from a couple of months to as long as three to four years.
- Community Colleges. Local community colleges tend to be more economical than most private colleges and a large number have excellent programs. They almost solely offer Associate’s Degrees and are established and maintained by either state or local governments.
- Culinary Arts Schools and Institutes. The more advanced training and degrees are provided by culinary colleges and institutes. Several institutes provide the most respected as well as the highest level of training in academia. However, since they are private schools they tend to be more costly than their public counterparts, some much more.
Choosing a culinary college will not only be based on the type of program or degree you want to pursue, but also the amount of money you have to invest in your education. If you decide to attend a public school to minimize expenses, keep in mind that out-of-state residents usually are required to pay a higher tuition than in-state residents. Also, a lot of community colleges and regional public schools have lower tuition rates for local residents. So be sure to research the public options within Alabama and also within the Auburn University AL area to locate the most economical options.
Online Culinary Colleges
Some prospective students may find that there are no culinary arts institutions that are within driving proximity of their Auburn University AL home. One solution is to enroll in online training within the comfort of one’s residence. The convenience and flexibility makes it the best solution for some students that are still working full-time while going to school. Plus there are more programs online than ever that are accredited. Remember that a substantial part of the instruction will be provided under an externship. Externships are programs where students train under regional chefs or other cooking professionals so that they receive practical training beyond the virtual classroom. Just make certain that the online program you choose is accredited by a U.S. Department of Education recognized agency (more on this later). So if you are disciplined enough to be able to participate in classes and study using this more independent method, attaining a cooking online degree might be the ideal option for you.
Comparing Culinary Schools
At this point you should have made a decision regarding the type of degree that you plan to attain, and whether or not you want to enroll in a private or a public institute. Since there are numerous culinary colleges in the Auburn University area and across the United States, you must create a checklist of important qualifications so that you can begin narrowing your options. Some obvious qualifiers, for example cost and location are an excellent place to begin. But selecting a school because it is the nearest or the cheapest is not the optimal way to make a decision regarding your education. There are other factors, for example accreditation and reputation that you need to evaluate as well. Therefore, following are some key areas that you should investigate for each school as you compare them and make your final decision.
Accreditation. It’s important that the culinary arts program you select has some type of accreditation from either a regional or a national agency. As previously stated, the accrediting organization should be a U.S. Department of Education recognized authority, such as the American Culinary Federation (ACF). ACF accredited schools have successfully completed a detailed assessment pertaining to their course of study, instructors and facilities. Therefore not only does accreditation help ensure that you will receive excellent training, but it may also help in acquiring a student loan or financial assistance which are generally not offered for non-accredited schools.
Age. Newer schools often have the advantage of having modern equipment and facilities. However, they may not have been open long enough to garner an accreditation or to establish a reputation. On the other hand, older schools may still be using their original, outdated equipment, but have established a long track record of excellence and earned one or more accreditations. Also, the much more a school has been in operation, the more graduates the school can reach out to for its job assistance program. Certainly there is some give and take based on the age of the culinary arts schools. And older, more highly regarded schools usually update their equipment and facilities. The important lesson is that in the best case scenario, your selected school will have an exceptional reputation, accreditation and a modern facility with modern equipment.
Job Placement Rates. To begin with, find out what the graduation rates are for the culinary arts colleges you are looking at. Low graduation rates are indications that a number of students were dissatisfied with either the institutes or the programs and dropped out. They might also signify that the instructors were not competent to teach the curriculum. Ask the schools to supply their job placement rates as well. If a school has a higher job placement rate, it will help verify that it has a good or outstanding reputation within the cooking community, as well as a broad network of professional relationships. Be wary of any school that will not furnish this information.
Location. The culinary college that you attend should be within driving distance of your Auburn University home, unless you can relocate. You may think about attending school online, but you would still have to travel for your externship training. Alternatively, perhaps you have decided to enroll in a particular culinary arts college located in a different state due to its ranking and courses offered. It would be a wise decision to visit the facility before enrolling, to make sure that you are comfortable with the location and your prospective living conditions. Look over the training facilities personally to make certain they are modern and that the equipment is state of the art. Keep in mind also that many schools focus their job assistance programs within their regional communities, so pick a location where you will be happy working.
Class Sizes. The best way to learn how to cook is with a lot of one-on-one instruction. If the culinary arts school you enroll in has bigger classes, you will undoubtedly get little personal attention from the instructors. The best means to assess the interaction between instructors and students is to audit a few of the classes. Ask a couple of the students what their experience has been. Find out if they are satisfied with the amount of attention they get in class as well as the entire course of training. Also, speak with a few of the teachers and determine what their teaching approaches are as well as their experiences and credentials.
Flexible Class Schedules. There is no benefit to in enrolling in a cooking school if you will be unable to attend the classes. Therefore make sure that the school you choose has available class scheduling that can fit in with your busy lifestyle. If you can only attend in the evening or on Saturdays or Sundays due to your work schedule, verify that the school you select offers either weekend or night classes. If you can only attend part-time, confirm that the culinary college has a part-time offering. Also, check to see what the make-up policy is if you have to miss a class because of family, work or other obligations.
Enrolling in a Culinary Arts Program near Auburn University Alabama?
If you are considering attending culinary school near Auburn University AL, following is some interesting and useful information about the location of your new school campus.
Auburn University (AU or Auburn) is a land-grant and public research university in Auburn, Alabama, United States. With more than 23,000 undergraduate students and a total enrollment of more than 30,000 with 1,260 faculty members, Auburn is the second largest university in Alabama. Auburn University is one of the state's two public flagship universities.
Auburn was chartered on February 1, 1856, as East Alabama Male College, a private liberal arts school affiliated with the Methodist Episcopal Church, South. In 1872, under the Morrill Act, it became the state's first public land-grant university and was renamed as the Agricultural and Mechanical College of Alabama. In 1892, it became the first four-year coeducational school in Alabama, and in 1899 was renamed Alabama Polytechnic Institute (API) to reflect its changing mission. In 1960, its name was changed to Auburn University to acknowledge the varied academic programs and larger curriculum of a major university. In 1964, under Federal Court mandate, AU admitted its first African American student.
The Alabama Legislature chartered the institution as the East Alabama Male College on February 1, 1856, coming under the guidance of the Methodist Church in 1859. Its first president was Reverend William J. Sasnett, and the school opened its doors in 1859 to a student body of eighty and a faculty of ten.
Auburn's early history is inextricably linked with the Civil War and the Reconstruction-era South. Classes were held in "Old Main" until the college was closed due to the war, when most of the students and faculty left to enlist. The campus was a training ground for the Confederate Army, and "Old Main" served as a hospital for Confederate wounded.
Find the Right Culinary Arts Degree Auburn University Alabama
A rewarding career in the hospitality and restaurant profession is contingent upon picking the ideal culinary arts institute. As we have discussed, there are several things that you should take into account when researching schools, for example their accreditation, reputations, and training facilities. Just like any career decision, you should begin by acquiring information, and the ideal method to do that is by contacting culinary schools directly, either in person or over the telephone. If you’re unsure regarding which schools to consider, you may need to think about talking to chefs in your location about any culinary arts schools they recommend. Later go on the Web to look into those schools further before you contact them. You originally came to this website due to your interest in Culinary Arts Degree. However, by taking the time to carefully assess each of your education options, you will be in a much better position to make an enlightened decision. And when you select the right school, you will have a terrific beginning toward your dream of becoming a chef in Auburn University AL.
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