Anyone who ever dreams of being a part of the food industry, especially as a chef, will have to make the decision whether or not they want to go to culinary school. While real-life practical experience is great, a culinary school has its own benefits. Being able to learn from renowned chefs, honing your technical skills and discovering new techniques of cooking different foods can only be learned in an educational environment. So are you up for this challenge? Here are 5 questions to ask before you decide on a culinary school.
Where is the school located?
The whole idea behind going to culinary school is to be able to have some sort of future in this industry. The location of your school is important. Is it located close to a major culinary hub? For example, culinary schools in Florida located close to the major tourist attractions are sure to offer a great many professional opportunities.
What are the fees?
Going to culinary school is not going to be cheap. The fees will depend on how long your course is and the level of instruction you will receive. Regardless, you should first find out about the how much it will cost you to go to school. Then, you need to find out if they offer financial aid or scholarships. Will you have to take a loan? Can you work along with studying at culinary school? These are important questions that need to be answered before you make a decision.
Who teaches the classes?
While the location and fees are important, the faculty is just as important. Do your research before you even apply to a particular culinary school. This will give you an idea of who teaches at the school. Research is necessary to also find out what your professors have been doing or are doing currently. Are they chefs in well-known restaurants? Will they add value to your education? Will they make your time at school an enriching experience?
Does the school offer practical education?
Learning and honing your culinary skills are important. However, it is also important to gain practical experience side by side. Most culinary schools have a student-run restaurant that allows them to put their skills to test on a daily basis. Also, ask yourself if the experience mirrors real-life restaurants. Serving a few guests a day is not realistic. However, serving over 300 guests can make sure students learn how to perform under pressure. Therefore, find out if your school has provisions for gaining practical experience before you choose it.
What facilities does the school offer?
The hallmark of a good culinary school is the kind of facilities it offers. It is essential for students to train with equipment that they will face in real restaurants. Having proper facilities does not necessarily mean having new, shiny, high-end kitchen equipment. It is about making sure the students are used to cooking on a range of appliances. This way, they will be prepared for whatever they face after graduating culinary school.