A career in culinary arts marries the many tasks of food preparation with the care, attention and devotion of a well-trained cook. Throughout the history of classical culinary preparation, from the kitchens of famous French Chef Auguste Escoffier to today’s modern restaurants, clubs, hotels and healthcare dining, the correct preparation of food is an active and exciting career. Understanding elements of sanitation, working with others as a team, proper ingredients and how to use them, and cooking with all five senses is all part of the kitchen.
Areas of specialty for professional culinarians can range from prep-cook, hot food cook, pastry and baking and garde manger (the cold kitchen). Types of jobs that can be found in the industry range from starting cook in a prep kitchen to executive chef. Often professional culinarians use the certification levels from the American Culinary Federation to define their level of experience and abilities. Annual salary levels–ranging from $24,000 to $85,000–depend on the amount of experience, ambition/responsibility and education of the individual, and vary per locale throughout the country.
East Central College Culinary Arts offers students a unique opportunity to prepare themselves for a long and successful career as a professional culinarian. Students start the program by learning elements of sanitation, cost control, business math and product identification before entering the kitchen and starting to cook. From the basics to advanced courses such as Garde Manger, Advanced Baking & Confections, and Advanced Culinary & Restaurant Operations, curriculum is offered in a progressive succession of block sessions.
Courses are taught by certified chef instructors in a kitchen built for instructional cooking. Specialized areas of the kitchen are a lecture/demonstration area, student stations, bakeshop and cold room for garde manger and charcuterie. Recently updated, the cold kitchen is equipped to offer AAS degree students elements of forcemeats, sausages and smoking/curing foods. Also included is a large garden where students are involved with the daily care and harvest of vegetables for their own cooking.
- High School Diploma or equivalent
- Be prepared to take MTH 102 Business Mathematics
- Have reading skills capable of entering ENG 101 English Comp I
- Complete an application of admission to the Culinary Arts program
- Complete an application for admission to East Central College or be a current ECC student
- Complete the Statement of Food Allergies/Vaccinations (students are required to have their Hepatitis A vaccination)
- Complete a program interview
Additional Program Information
35-1011.00, 35-1012.00, 35-2013.00, 35-2014.00
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