What to Look For in a Culinary Program Curriculum

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Perhaps you have the seed of a dream: you imagine yourself in a restaurant kitchen with people shouting, “Yes, chef!” in response to your orders, or you can smell the sweet aroma of the beautiful pastries you’ve created at a bakery.

How do you begin to make your culinary fantasies a reality?

If you think culinary school is a good choice for you, there are probably many questions you have about selecting the right one. How do you choose a good culinary arts course?

Here are 7 tips on how to choose a culinary program:

1. Find a School with a Well-Rounded Program

After graduation, you will have a variety of technical skills and culinary knowledge to show off your dedication and respect for this field. A culinary school with a well-rounded curriculum can give you more career options.

Students at Escoffier have the opportunity to develop professional, technical and business skills. Culinary Arts Programs.

They may also receive instructions on cooking techniques. knife skills. pastry techniques and seasoning Plating, flavor profilesThey can gain experience in the industry by acquiring technical skills Externship(professional skills); they can also explore starting their own business. Business plan, calculating profits and losses, and managing operations in the foodservice industry (business skills).

Students can learn about different cuisines around the world. Depending on the course, students can study the business side of food service, including financial concepts, professional communication and foodservice management.

What can I study at Escoffier College?

Escoffier offers Degrees or diplomasThe following are some examples of how to get started: Six areas of study:

  • Culinary Arts – residential or distance education
  • Baking & Pastry – residential or distance education
  • Food Entrepreneurship – distance education only
  • Plant-Based Culinary Arts – residential or distance education
  • Hospitality & Restaurant Operations Management – distance education only
  • Holistic Nutrition & Wellness – distance education only

2. Look for Chef Instructors With a Wide Range of Experience

In addition to variety in the curriculum, consider the type of variety in experience you’ll find from those who are teaching you the skills you need to succeed.

Escoffier Chef instructorsChefs who have experience in the industry may have been chefs at top restaurants, or even owned them.

In January 2024, these include:

  • 82 Executive chefs
  • 60 business owners or entrepreneurs currently active or past
  • 19 people worked in Michelin star-rated restaurants
  • 13 published authors

Escoffier instructors are experienced in any vision you may have.

Students at Escoffier have the opportunity to explore a variety of culinary skills.

3. Explore the School’s History and Philosophy

Although you’re focused on the future, it helps to know the history of the school you’re researching. What are its core values and principles? Do they align with yours?

The Auguste Escoffier School of Culinary Arts has a long tradition of finely trained chefs who have mastered the techniques and skills of the culinary arts. Auguste Escoffier (1846 – 1935), the legendary French chef, visionary patriarch of modern cooking, and the namesake of our school.

Auguste Escoffier influenced the world a century before there was social media. He introduced concepts like a-la-carte dining and a brigade systemThe industry still uses a standard hierarchy of management within the kitchen staff. He taught more than 2,000 chefs during his career and cooked for the world’s celebrities and royalty, earning him the title “King of Chefs and Chef of Kings.”

Auguste Escoffier School of Culinary Arts carries on this legacy by focusing on community, teamwork and camaraderie. The environment is collaborative rather than competitive and continues to be innovative.

The school also focuses its teaching on teaching students how to assume responsibility in the culinary arts and pastry arts as well as hospitality. Students can receive a well-rounded culinary education, as well as a business foundation that is applicable to many professional roles.

4. Search for a flexible and accessible learning environment

Accessibility and flexibility are key factors in a student’s likelihood to graduate. Some students may find that an online curriculum is more convenient for their work or family commitments.

Escoffier offers students two options to attend Escoffier. They can either attend our residential programs located in Austin, Texas or Boulder, Colorado.

With Escoffier’s Online programs, a quality culinary education is now an option available to thousands of students outside of major cities, who can’t necessarily uproot their lives. Online culinary schoolIt is also possible for those with families or full-time jobs to attend a culinary school at their own pace.

Laptop sitting on kitchen island with screen showing hands demonstrating how to wrap dough.

Online classes offer students the flexibility to take classes in locations and on a schedule that’s convenient.

5. Check if the school is accredited

The following are some of the ways to get in touch with each other Accredited schoolThe third-party agency has defined measurable quality standards. Additionally, students’ ability to receive federal financial aid depends on it. According to federal regulations Department of Education, “In order for students to receive federal student aid from the U.S. Department of Education (Department) for postsecondary study, the institution must be accredited by a ‘nationally recognized’ accrediting agency.”

Escoffer’s culinary school AccreditationThe Austin campus is nationally accredited (by the Council on Occupational Education, COE) and the Boulder Campus (which includes online courses) is nationally accredited (by the Accrediting Council of Continuing Education and training (ACCET).

Austin is approved and regulated by the Texas Workforce Commission-Career Schools and Colleges, and is authorized as an Associate of Applied Science degree–granting institution through the Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board. The American Culinary Federation Educational Foundation Accrediting Commission accredits the programs.

The Boulder campus—through which the online programs are available—is approved and regulated by the Colorado Department of Higher Education (CDHE), Division of Private Occupational Schools. Escoffier is approved by CDHE for participation in the National Council for State Authorization Reciprocity Agreements.

The American Culinary Federation Educational Foundation’s Accreditation Commission has accredited the Diploma in Pastry Arts program, Diploma in Culinary Arts program, and Associate Degree in Culinary Arts Program (residential only).

Escoffier belongs to several professional organizations including the International Association of Culinary Professionals, the World Association of Chefs Societies, the National Restaurant Association and StateFoodSafety. StateFoodSafety provides online food safety education and is dedicated to educating people about food safety.

“I think Escoffier’s online education makes a student very competitive. My culinary education to date has really helped me develop both my teaching skills and my food styling. Escoffier is a program I would recommend to anyone. It’s affordable, it’s flexible and it’s comprehensive. The chef instructors are so wonderful, and they care very much about the success of every student.”*

Laura Devries

Laura Devries

Online Culinary Arts Graduate

Find out about financial aid available

Escoffier offers financial assistance to those who meet the requirements.

Aid can include federal grants, federal student loans, parent loans, work study programs, stipends and other. scholarshipsEscoffier offers flexible payment plans. Escoffier also offers flexible payments plans. Active duty personnel and veteransYou and certain family members may be eligible for grants such as Veteran Administration Benefits (VAB), Military Tuition Assistance (MTA), Yellow Ribbon Program (YRP) and more.**

Find out more Talk to a Financial Advisor.

FAFSA for culinary school cover page

Get the Financial Aid Guide to Culinary School

The first step towards seeing if you qualify for financial aid for culinary school is completing the FAFSA®. Follow this essential guide to be on your way!

6. Make sure that students get real-world experiences

When you graduate from culinary school, it’s important that you’re able to bridge the gap between the learning environment and a working foodservice establishment. Students can get a real-world look at a professional kitchen even before they start their first job.

Students must complete at least one industrial course, whether they are studying on campus or in the online Escoffier program. Externship. This can give them the opportunity to get additional hands-on practice, see how a professional kitchen operates, and “try on” a position.

The following are some of the ways to improve your own ability to speak. Career Services department works with students to help them decide what type of externship they’d like to pursue, and can connect them to potential externship opportunities.

Find out if the School can guide aspirant business owners

If you dream of opening your own restaurant or catering business one day, a culinary arts curriculum focusing on the kitchen’s business side can help you walk that path.

New business models such as Food trucksThe following are some examples of how to get started: ghost kitchensThe National Restaurant Association expects that barriers to entry will continue to be removed. More food service entrepreneurs than ever beforeIn the coming years.

Some of Escoffier’s Culinary Arts programs include business-focused courses that can prepare students for industry challenges both in and out of the kitchen. Students can benefit from the Technical Writing for the Hospitality Industry Course, for example. It will help them write clearly for standard operating procedures or training documents.

Students pursuing an Associate Degree in Culinary Entrepreneurship also study topics such as business planning, credit management and business ethics. They can also develop a business plan with the help of their Chef Instructors.

“After visiting several schools, I was most impressed by the Auguste Escoffier School of Culinary Arts because of its small class sizes, intensive labs, business focus, and knowledgeable staff.”*

Monica Paredes

Monica Paredes

Austin Pastry Arts Graduate

7. Assess if the school has a focus on sustainability

Whatever path you choose, you’ll place your customers’ wants and needs front and center. And customers are increasingly interested in buying local, knowing the story behind the food, and what a business’ sustainability practices are. Industry experts expect that Sustainability will remain a driving forceIn the future, restaurants will focus on waste minimization and sustainable sourcing of products.

A culinary arts program should reflect this change, focusing on sustainable supply chains and using seasonal ingredients. Escoffier’s six-week Farm To Table® ExperienceThe relationship between the chef, the farm or the food supplier can help aspiring chefs to meet this need.

Students can learn about food production by working with farmers or artisan makers who produce products like wine, cheese, sausages, or beer. Actual activities will vary depending on the time of year, location and availability of farmers or makers.

Online students are encouraged to explore the importance of sustainability and the benefits of buying local. Escoffier offers quarterly Farm-to Table Immersion Programs, which allow online students to interact with residential campus staff for a hands-on experience. (Doesn’t lead to an academic credit.

“I chose to attend Escoffier primarily because of the farm-to-table program. I believe in the importance of sustainability and ethical sourcing and wanted to grow more familiar with the farm-to-table philosophy.”*

Suzanne Armstrong

Suzanne Armstrong

Boulder Culinary Arts Graduate

From Curriculum to Career

Your journey in the culinary world is uniquely yours, so when you evaluate a culinary curriculum, it’s important to look for one that can best help you chart your path and that offers a variety of options. Programs in Culinary arts, Baking & Pastry Arts, Hospitality & Restaurant Operations ManagementEscoffier will prepare you for a variety of culinary careers.

If you have questions about the Escoffier Curriculum, please contact us. admissions departmentFind the answers!


*Information may not reflect every student’s experience. Results and outcomes are based on many factors, such a geography or prior experience.

**Financial aid is available for those who apply and qualify.

The original article, which ran on Oct. 12 2020, has since been updated.

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