Do You Need a Degree from a Culinary Art School?

Among culinary artists, chefs, and hospitality circles, there has always been debate about whether or not cooking schoolis a necessity. Those that have worked in the industry for decades claim that hard work is what really pays off. People that hire chefs and hospitality professionals concede that, in order to get a high paying job, they expect a candidate to have a lot of experience – but they also expect the candidae to be a graduate of a culinary art school. Earning a degree in culinary arts does not negate the need for work experience, but it does count for at least “half of the grade” when it comes to applying to a higher paying job in the future.

Is a degree from a bona fide cooking school really important when it comes to employment that pays higher than the average? According to “Ask Annie” from CNN Money:

 In some cases, it really is: “If you’re a speech pathologist, a master’s is most likely the minimum degree you need in

 But until you’ve identified a goal, rushing off to get a master’s degree may be premature. “Most employers outside of academia value work experience just as much as postgraduate studies, if not more so,” observes Cooke. “To find the right order for a health care provider to hire you,” says Cooke. “Or if your plan is to teach history, again, you need grad school.”

To find the balance between the two, talk to some people who are already in the field you’d like to work in, or who have the kind of job you think you’d like to get, and ask them how they got there.”…More at Get a job, or go to grad school?

But what about real statistics? Are other people earning more or experiencing more success by obtaining a degree? Can culinary art school really make a difference when it comes to future earning potential? The U.S. Census Bureau says:

In March 2011, for the first time ever, more than 30 percent of U.S. adults 25 and older had at least a bachelor’s degree, the U.S. Census Bureau reported today. As recently as 1998, fewer than one-quarter of people this age had this level of education.

“This is an important milestone in our history,” Census Bureau Director Robert Groves said. “For many people, education is a sure path to a prosperous life. The more education people have the more likely they are to have a job and earn more money, particularly for individuals who hold a bachelor’s degree.”

…More at Bachelor’s Degree Attainment Tops 30 Percent for the First Time, Census Bureau Reports

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