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Culinary Schools in Wisconsin?

post #1 of 10
Thread Starter 
Done some searching but never came up with the answers I wanted. I'm wondering what a good school for culinary is in WI? I know the Le Cordon Bleu schools are in Chicago and Minneapolis, but I'm looking for somewhere in Wisconsin. Currently I've been comparing the different offerings from the Technical Schools in WI, some of which appear to have some comprehensive programs. (all Associate Degrees some have apprenticeships). The ones I've been looking at have been Fox Valley Tech, Madison Area Tech, and Nicolet Area Tech. Can anyone give me any input on these?



Fox Valley Tech
Madison Area Tech
post #2 of 10
I have worked with students from all these programs, and to be honest, I am not impressed by any of these programs, if the students I have worked with are any indication of their programs. If forced to chose though, I would say that Madison is the least objectionable. Sorry, I am sure this is not what you want to hear, but I would really consider what your goals and aspirations are. If your goals are just to stay in the area and work at any of the hundreds of nondescript restaurants that plauge this area then one of these schools would be fine, but if you have aspirations of a serious culinary career, I would highly recommend looking beyond WI for your training.
post #3 of 10
Thread Starter 

Thanks for the input! The main factors that are keeping me from going out of state, are cost, (granted you get what you pay for education wise), and in the near future the fact my wife is in a job right now where she is getting a new training program going that she would like to have going and organized before she were to leave the position.

Would an apprenticeship program be a better alternative to these college programs?

Thanks for the input, it is much appreciated!!

post #4 of 10
Pete, I thought Milwaukee's MATC was pretty good. Any thoughts on that one? I don't now where you live, TmbrRtlr, or if that's even an option.

If I were in your shoes (and mind you, I'm an educator, not a professional chef!), I'd look for a cook or chef whose work you admire and try to work for him/her as an informal apprentice for now. Sure, you can get the basics on sanitation, etc. from a technical school program, but the other side of it- the inspirational, soulful part of the work- is best gained from someone who inspires you. This is true for any profession or pursuit.

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post #5 of 10
Thread Starter 
Funny you mention MATC... that was one that was on the list to. Problem is right now I'm in Stevens Point. So if my wife kept her job, that would be a heck of a commute. Maybe I'll do some checking in the area and see if I can find somewhere to apprentice. We shall see, I'm currently looking for somewhere to get into part time and go from there. So I'll probably do that and then once my wifes program is up and running and we can start looking to move again I'll look into one of the LCB schools in either MN or IL.

Thanks for the info, this has been a very informitive site so far.

post #6 of 10
If you are really serious about a culinary education, maybe you should hold off until you can go somewhere you really want to go. In the meantime, go out and get a job in the business. It will give you some experience before you head off to school, which I think is great, and I think you will get more out of your culinary education if you already have a good background in the business.

As for MATC (Milwaukee) I haven't really had many dealings with them or their students, but my feelings on tech colleges as culinary schools, are that I find them lacking oftentimes. The problem is they offer so many different programs that they can't focus on the culinary exclusively, which means the programs doesn't get all the money, time or energy it deserves, IMHO.
post #7 of 10
I have the same question about schools in SE Wisconsin . I just retired and not interested in a career , but want to become a chef or a better cook. I have some dishes I make extremely well but I want to broaden my horizons and learn about sauces and different pair in of seasonings . I have a heavily Mexican influence in my cooking style , since I'm half Mexican . But I really would like to cook more confidently , so a school or classes is what I need . Any advice would be greatly appreciated .
post #8 of 10
Check some of the local tech schools. Many offer continuing ed classes which tend to focus on specific cuisines or cooking techniques. I think you would be disappointed in a full program.
post #9 of 10

MATC in Milwaukee is/was my alma mater. But that was back in 1978.

2 year degree, hands on cooking in the school's cafeteria, or fine dining restaurant depending on your course.

I have fond memories, and this situation taught a pretty good introduction to the kitchen and equipment.

Everything was basic stuff.  Afternoon classes were for lectures.


University of Wisconsin-Stout (Menomonie) also teaches basic culinary skills but this school is more management of Hospitality venues.

post #10 of 10
Thnx .
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