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I really need the help of professionals.....

post #1 of 17
Thread Starter 
I coudl really use dead honist opinions here:

I know its hard to tell someone about what to do with their lives but I am at this point in my life where Im just completely lost and confused. Heres my problem:

I am in my 4th term here at The CIA. They have increased the tuition 2 times in the last 10 months (pushing 40k a year) I graduate in November with my AOS. My mom has her heart set on me getting my BPS, doesnt matter where or for what just I need it, which I agree, right now AOS seem to just be useless, and its a shame. But anyway, I am the type of person that doesnt like change. I dont like sharing a room with a sleeze bag, I dont like sharing a bathroom with 40 other guys, who dont give a **** about the other 39 of us. The stress of school, I learn with my hands, as most of you Im sure do as well, not with books. I am ok (c student) in school, for 40k I should be atleast a B student. I just dont want to go to school anymore honistly, and I just want my AOS and to be done and start a life.

I am just not the type of person to be in the "college life" literaly, I sit in my room alone and watch tv on my free time. I dont really want to go out and meet people or "make friends". Its to easy to get caught drinking under age here or smoking things you shouldnt be, so I stay away because I would rather drop out than get kicked out of here.

I have worked at Food Network for 5 months this past august to december so thats on my resume, ill have my AOS degree for Culinary Arts and Buissness Mang. from here.

Is it possible to get my life started and be "ok" with just that? Or should I continue my education and have to pay **** off for the rest of my life?

Thank you for taking the time and responding. I really do appreciate it.
"Some of us Cook. Some of us Grow. All of us Eat."
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"Some of us Cook. Some of us Grow. All of us Eat."
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post #2 of 17
Get your AOS and get to work. Like you said you are a C student. I looks to me you are a more hands on kind of guy, I am also. I learned everything by the seat of my pants. get good at want you do and talk a good game.............Bill
post #3 of 17
Thread Starter 
Thanks Bill. Thats how I was thinking. Thanks for the quick reply.
"Some of us Cook. Some of us Grow. All of us Eat."
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"Some of us Cook. Some of us Grow. All of us Eat."
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post #4 of 17
Be done and get to work. I, like you was a middle of the road student that spent more time at work than at school and on my school work when I was at J&W. I graduated with my AOS and 15 years later I am going back to school to get my BOS in Food Science. School isnt for everyone, it wasnt for me and I have done VERY WELL for myself as both a Chef/Owner and now the Corp Chef for a global company.
Taste: The sensation derived from food, as interpreted thru the tongue to brain sensory system.
Flavor: The overall impression combining taste, odor, mouthfeel and trigeminal perception.
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Taste: The sensation derived from food, as interpreted thru the tongue to brain sensory system.
Flavor: The overall impression combining taste, odor, mouthfeel and trigeminal perception.
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post #5 of 17
I agree with the graduate and get to work advice. And I'm sort of down with that being a "C" student now won't necessarily hurt you.

But CIA isn't heavy on the academics, it's hands on as it is; and there just isn't any excuse for getting cees -- which is another way of saying "getting by." Stop making excuses. If you're a good cook, act like it and learn what you need in order to start cooking "A" food.

With this amount of time already into it, and your dismal performance so far, it's likely that you've got some weak spots in the basics you've already had and that is holding you back -- along with what appears, from your post, to be a very lackadaisacal attitude. The bad news is that you're going to have to go back and learn what you should have learned before. The good news is that none of this stuff is particularly difficult.

Show up for class early. Don't overcook, don't undercook. Hit your seasoning levels every time. Taste, taste, taste. Don't overload the plate. Wipe the plate. Keep your station organized. That's a "B."

If you can get your teachers excited about you, you have a much better chance of landing good jobs down the line.

BDL
post #6 of 17

C student?

I am an employer, have been some 15 years 2 Restaurants, Catering company and Cake design. I have to say: grades mean something, if you can't pull off better than a C (average) you are not really trying or you do not really have the passion. (my view as an employer)
I waited 13 years to be able to afford school, while owning and operating my businesses, when I was finally able to take the time to go to school I had to work around a fairly difficult schedule (still owned company) (not watching TV in my dorm).
I broke my foot one morning before class and went to school anyway (I was 6 weeks away from graduation), I Catered a 200 person Wedding(foot still broke) and went on to graduate with Honors.
I can say more than half the people ( I have met) that go to school to become a Chef, do so because they saw it on TV and think it is a walk in the park, you should not be in a hurry to graduate you have every opportunity, you have time to watch TV? Study, do labs, take on a job. One of my Restaurants has a staff of 24, one of my best "Chefs" did not go to school, drive and ambition mean so much more!

Just my 2 cents, on each side of the coin.

Joan
post #7 of 17
I have to agree with everybody, unless you have a learning disability don't let excuses get in the way of you getting a better mark... there is clearly something that is preventing you from doing it (whether it is being a procrastinator, unambitious, lost interest, etc.). I don't have "formal schooling" in the culinary arts, but I have a master's degree in another discipline... there was a period of time when I didn't do so well and was close to failing out, but when I admitted that it was because I wasn't working hard enough I began to do better and started getting As.
"If it's chicken, chicken a la king. If it's fish, fish a la king. If it's turkey, fish a la king." -Bender
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"If it's chicken, chicken a la king. If it's fish, fish a la king. If it's turkey, fish a la king." -Bender
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post #8 of 17
Grades are NOT "given", they are "earned"!

A "C" means you are doing "adequate" work, the equivalent of "minimum wage".

If your goal is to earn more than the minimum, you need to figure out why you are not "earning more than the minimum".
Chef,
Specialties: MasterCook/RecipeFox; Culinary logistics; Personal Chef; Small restaurant owner; Caterer
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Chef,
Specialties: MasterCook/RecipeFox; Culinary logistics; Personal Chef; Small restaurant owner; Caterer
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post #9 of 17
Thread Starter 
Quite honistly, I understand where all of you are comming from. And I apprecate you taking the time to respond to my topic.

That being said......


I am **** good at what I do. I have never had a job otuside the industry. I gave up all my freinds and people I knew (and becomming a freshman in highschool, thats a big thing) to go to a technical school for culinary arts.

I worked my intire life to get into The CIA.

Ontop of that, and it may come across as me "defending myself" but I'm not.

Here, an "A" is 92+ "B" is 84. Now, I am a **** good cook, I know my way around a kitchen, my knife skills are great. Unfortunitly for me, I am not an amazing STUDENT. This is school afterall and that is what is kicking my ***. I have never been a good tester.

Now you would think that your performance in the kitchen is what would you say? 90% of your final grade. Its not. Its 50%. The other 50 is quizes and the final.

I know many many A students here that cant cook for their lives. Its a shame really.

So again, thanks for taking the time to anwser my topic and please keep the opnions comming.
"Some of us Cook. Some of us Grow. All of us Eat."
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"Some of us Cook. Some of us Grow. All of us Eat."
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post #10 of 17
i wouldnt get defensive about what the others are saying, they have some truth to it. Every school is the same one way or another. Grades dont mean much but they do mean something. In my school there was the A group it was pretty much made up of people who could take test well and could cook but i would want them on the line with me on a busy night. The B group Great cooks ok test takers, These are the people who will be great chefs in the future. The c group usualy good cook dont care about test partys too much, these people if they stay in the buisness long enough will be the mediocore chefs. D's and F's well there the lowest for a reason.
Im not trying to insult you but if it was my lifelong goal to go to one of the best cooking schools in the wold as my life dream and i worked my whole life to get there id be really pissed at my self for only being average. Just think about what people are saying.

Oh and to anwser your original question a Bs degree donest mean much right away where ever you go you going to start off at the bottom and have to work you way up. i dont know how cia credits transfer but maybe look at finishing school online or a a comunity college. If my credits would transfer thats what i would do, but they dont so, ill probaly never have a batchlers degree.
post #11 of 17
All The Good Chefs I know cook in the Kitchen and not in the classroom. If you are good in the Kitchen thats all that counts. I have known people that were great in the classroom and didn't do well in the kitchen. Let'"s face it, all you really want to do is cook. If I had to pick one thing to be good at, it would be in the kitchen. I bet you will cook rings around the A students. Go get them Kid, kick some butt. This isn't rocket science. Be the best and learn as much as you can from everyone in every Kitchen you work at................30 year Chef, no schooling, own my own company, I was told by people I would fall on my Butt in this Business, I'm going on 15 years.............. If you want it, Get it...............................Bill
post #12 of 17
Hang in there, mighty Quinn.

If you paid for school then max out the whole time.

I totally agree with every poster who states that Chefs are not impressed with school, and I'm one of them.

But then again, School is a challange, just like your first month or so at a real 4 star place. Either you rise to the challange and make the most of it, or slink away with your tail between your legs. Look at school as a challange, you've already seen the first few waves of students drop out.

Knowledge is power, hand skills and economy of movement is power, neither out-trumps the other. Now take for instance CDN's only "Iron Chef", R. Feenie. I watched the video, and saw his mistake coming about 15 minutes before he did, he added raw pineapple to a gelatine solution. I know that raw pineapple, papaya, kiwi, and fresh figs all contain an enzyme that prohibit the gelling of gelatine. Feenie is a far better Chef than I'll ever be, but I saw this mistake coming.

Knowlege is power. Your teachers are some of the best Chefs around with an incredible amount of knowledge, it is your job to extract that knowledge and apply it to your carreer. Take this menatality to wherever you go, I've had miserable excuses for co-workers and bosses, but even from a drunken piece of excrement I was able to extract some very time-saving techniques.

If you're a great cook, that's fine, but you won't be 20 forever, you won't kick the bucket with a heart attack at age 90 manning the broiler and saute and reading out orders. Either you'll move on and up to management, out to a different career, or stagnate and become bitter. Take what you can from school and learn basics of mangement, see what kind of friendships you can make with the alumni.

Extract what you can.
...."This whole reality thing is really not what I expected it would be"......
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...."This whole reality thing is really not what I expected it would be"......
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post #13 of 17
In my opinion to charge you guys 40 big ones a year is terrible. Your better off in a class hotel apprenticeing for 2 years, you will get more practical experience.
I am not against an education, but you can learn the same things in a community college. I have had many guys from CIA work for me some good some bad , and because of student loans, they were starting their lives in hock. You should not be charged for a year when you are not there for 4 monthes serving on externships.
I graduated a community college, worked my way up by always asking why this does this or that. I worked for the right people in the right places as saucier, butcher, gard manger, sous chef and chef. I went back to teach then opened 3 of my own places with borrowed money, Sold them all at a profit. Then went on to become Ex chef at the largest catering facility in its time in the US. Retired at 48 to Palm Beach Florida but then got bored and went back to work , not for the money, but I just couldnt sit around, Been in about 35 different countries and would do it all over again.
And I was a C student, and only attended a community college. ITS NOT THE SCHOOl ,ITS THE STUDENT . Good luck to you in all your endeavors.
CHEFED
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CHEFED
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post #14 of 17
Thread Starter 
Thank you guys. It means alot to me to hear other people that are passionate about this as I am that take the time to reply to my stupid thoughts.

God **** guys, Ive worked my intire life for food. I have lost friendships, relationships, important things in my life at the age of 20 just for food. I love food. I really really do. I love the smell, the looks, the taste, the prep, the impact food has on peoples lives day to day. Its an amazing thing.

Im aware that you can go so many different directions with a culinary degree, you dont always have to be in a 90 degree kitchen cranking out hamburgers for tourists. I dont want that.

I want to be successful as do all of you.

I have never been a great student, always have had a tough time just with the normal everyday classes like history and english. But as soon as I step into a kitchen, i rock out. There are students that are A students, but dont know what a french knife is.

I am good wtih my hands and my mind in a kitchen, but when it comes down to being "tested" on paper I freeze which turns me down to a C student.

I wont give up, wether Im in a kitchen, taking food photos, working on food tv shows, or any other way you can go.

But again, thank you so much for taking the time to anwser me with your opinions and experiences. Good or Bad.

I relize that there isnt always good and that many of you took it apon yourselves to show me from someone who has been holding a knife longer than I have been walking that there isnt always good.

So Thank You.
"Some of us Cook. Some of us Grow. All of us Eat."
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"Some of us Cook. Some of us Grow. All of us Eat."
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post #15 of 17
I would add that today's accomplished chefs are expected to do much more than just cook. While you will learn much from each chef for whom you work, there is just as much that you will not learn because your chef is too busy to teach you as though he was your personal professor. I learned many techniques in the kitchen, but usually had to run home and look up the details, history and full explanations for everything new I was told to do. That's where "book learning" is indispensable and if you have the chance to learn it now, in a classroom setting, you are fortunate indeed. Many of us were not able to quit working long enough to go to culinary school.

Chefs today also need to be fairly articulate. It is not enough to grunt descriptions from menus. The chefs I admire maintain active websites, blogs, and write for print media. They are intelligent, funny, snarky, and fully informed on all things food related. While it may be true that knowledge like this can be gained through years of working in the industry, why not take get a jump start by excelling in school?

The decision to quit or remain in school is one I would contemplate carefully because an opportunity like that may not come again.
post #16 of 17
Thread Starter 
I fully 100% agree with you TRK. Many people think its just about cooking when really, thats the easy part.

I also figure that now with the economy the way it is, its probly safer to stay in school for now because trying to land a job now is very very hard for college grads.
"Some of us Cook. Some of us Grow. All of us Eat."
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"Some of us Cook. Some of us Grow. All of us Eat."
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post #17 of 17

sent a query for you in ur inbox..please reply aSAp!!

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