or Connect
ChefTalk.com › ChefTalk Cooking Forums › Culinary Students › General Culinary School Discussions › Another kid with more questions
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:

Another kid with more questions

post #1 of 5
Thread Starter 
for starters I have been doing my best to look through previous threads so please forgive me if I ask anything that's been asked before.

so I'll be a senior in high school next year and I don't know what I want to do, but I like cooking and I like eating so it seemed natural. I know some people have said go out and find a chef and talk to him. But honestly I don't think theres one in my city. The most upscale restaurant I know of just hired some sketchy guy that I skate with as a cook... so pffff

So I'm just gonna try and ask some of you bros some questions and I would really appreciate if you guys help me out.

About how many hours do you work a week?
about how long are the shifts?
during what times are the shifts?
and what's your position and how much do you make? (I'm not expecting big money, but I don't really have a range in my head)
Any medical benefits?

I actually did get hired at a place called "Hells kitchen" and I start when school is over.. which is tommorow. I'll be a dishwasher and making salads and some deserts. So I guess this will shed some light on things.... hopefully. I'm also taking a "Professional Chef" class next year, and a chef does teach it, but I can't find him for the life of me.

Anyway for schools I've been looking at relatively small schools that don't cost a lot even though money isn't a problem. I've looked at oregon culinary institute I think in portland. and one in Arizona, that I can't remember that name of. I don't really know where else to look really.

So if you know of any small schools in warm climates that do not charge a ton and teach you what you need to know feel free to mention them

I live in Minnesota, it's extremely cold here, and I don't like it. I'm a skateboarder so anything on the east/west coast or in the south/southwest region would be GREAT!

I know theres a sticky that says don't get other people to do your research for you, and I hope you guys could lend me a hand here.

Any kind of helpful websites would be great too, or experiences in school.

thanks guys I really appreciate it
post #2 of 5
Don't mind the sticky, in this case. The kind of research that is meant to apply to is homework related, not life choice making.

OCI has been posted about here; nothing but good things have been said. The Arizona school is Scottsdale Culinary Institute; it's a Le Cordon Bleu affiliate school. Those can be hit-or-miss. It was a good school prior to becoming an LCB school, though i can't speak to it's current quality. There is a good school in Charlotte, North Carolina. Central Piedmont Community College (CPCC) has always had a good rep. It doesn't get anywhere near as cold there, although it does snow there in some winters (not all). Even then, it's never more than a couple inches and it's highly entertaining watching the locals in a panic over it.

I'm not currently working in a chef's position but I'll give you some of the info from my last executive chef position. I worked 11 hour days, 6 days a week. i worked from 10am to 9pm. No benefits and the pay was low, 32K. Normally, I wouldn't have accepted that, but times were tough. Another head chef job that I am currently trying to land pays about 45K base pay, plus medical and dental (and tattoos, oddly enough). It's high volume, but I'd only be working 45 hours a week, or so. There's different pay scales and different quality of life issues wherever you work though. I'd be hard put to it to actually give you a range of pay you can expect to make. I actually saw an ad here for an experienced kitchen manager; they were paying $9 to $11/hour, which is ridiculously low. Good luck to them.

I'm assuming you're not working in the Twin Cities location of ****'s Kitchen?
Anulos qui animum ostendunt omnes gestemus!
Anulos qui animum ostendunt omnes gestemus!
post #3 of 5
Well you are steppign in the right direction by starting as a dishwasher.

Do you job and do it well and strive for better while doing it. no matter what it is. And while doing that hango ut witht he cooks. ask questions have them show you how things are done. Hard work and dedication and takign the extra step can realyl get you very far. Real world expereince is much mroe vaulable then a sulinary school education. While culinary school with teach you the basics and proper technic they are 2 different worlds.

Spend the summer and learn as much as you can..... No matter how low you think the place is therei s always something to be learned and yes even in fast food or chain resturants you learn speed and mass quantities and all that

to answer your questions

About how many hours do you work a week? Depending on the place you could end up working 50 to 60 hours mostlikly more but if the owners are cheap they will try to keep you under 40
about how long are the shifts? expect at least 12 to 14 hours but mostlikly 16 to maybe 18
during what times are the shifts? Agian depends on that place and the menu. for a lunch and dinner place usually 11ish to closing whcih might be around 10 or 11 or until no one is walking in the door anymore

and what's your position and how much do you make? Youll start out with maybe $8 to $9 even right out of culianry school, as a dishwasher or starting out probably less. but again depends on the place. You start making real money when you become a sous chef then exec chef. Sous chef will progbably take about 5 year or more to get there.
Any medical benefits? odds are probably not. unless its a corporate place

Dont get discouraged if this is truly what you want to do the money will eventually come. I have learned that it is better to do something you love then to do something you hate that makes more money.

Im a career changer as my school dubbed me. went to school fulltime and worked fulltime. had a crazy year of planning a wedding, getting married honeymoon, taking care of a house and a million other things.

now that im working both jobs there is a big difference between IT whcih i hate that makes me cash and my Cooking gig. I would rather be ing a hot kitchen int he middle of the summer then in a a/c room staring at a darn computer all day but thats jsut me.

do what you love.... what ever it may be
post #4 of 5
2 years out of culinary school (but currently working on a BA program)

I average 25 - 35 hours per week. I am supposed to be part-time because of school, but I'm a nice guy and pick up extra shifts when we are busy.

My average shift length is aroung 8 hours, though on big days it could be anywhere from 10 - 14.

If I am working the restaurant line, it usually is from 4:00pm - 12:00 am, if I am prepping/executing banquets, it could be early like 9:00am - 10:00 pm

As of now I am a line cook, school has held me back from taking up a supervisory position quite a few times. I hold seniority over most of the cooks and I engage in some of the higher responsibilities like inventory or banquet oversight. Its around $12/hour, though I am long overdue for a raise. Full timers get medical, vacation, pto, and all the other basic benefits.
post #5 of 5
Thread Starter 
Great so far guys!

I do have to apologize though, I was reading one of the sticks again and didn't bother scrolling down to a SUPER helpful post of a bunch of webpages.

anyway, nope. The Duluth Hells Kitchen that opened up I think last year.

Oddly enough I have a couple of friends that are cooks for a local ma and pop place here. So I guess I'll ask them stuff. I did get a job offer there too, but by this time Hells already called me back, and it's much closer to me.

I'm a little dissapointed to here ACI is a LCB... because I haven't heard many good things.. although I'd be stoked on OCI, all kinds of skateparks there. I was going through google pages and it said they weren't accepting applications from my area :/.. maybe I'll call them.

I'll definitely check out charlotte though, thanks for that.

I'd love to hear from more of you
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:
  Return Home
ChefTalk.com › ChefTalk Cooking Forums › Culinary Students › General Culinary School Discussions › Another kid with more questions