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"Experience Required"

post #1 of 12
Thread Starter 
I was going to post in the professional chef's forum so that it would get some exposure, but its not really my right to do so.


When I see adds for job openings asking for 2 years of experience, is it inappropriate for a culinary student with his Associates to apply?

I know that in the eyes of the ACF, 2 years industry and 2 years of culinary school are roughly equivalent for certification purposes (Cert. Culinarian), but does the 'real world' take a similar stance?
post #2 of 12
The "real world" looks at culinary school grads with a little bit of skepticism. In the end it doesn't matter if you went to LCB Paris. It's how you do your job.
post #3 of 12
I don't know what the procedure is with job apps in this business, but I can't see how you could lose by being dead honest: here are my qualifications, I believe that this fits your "2 years' experience" criterion but if not I apologize for wasting your time, thank you. If I were doing the hiring and saw that, I'd feel like one of these:

1. Nope, not what I meant, but definitely give me a call in a couple years;
2. That is what I meant, and your honesty impresses me, come for an interview;
3. That's not what I meant, but you're the kind of guy I can work with, come on in anyway and let's talk.

What do you lose?
post #4 of 12
Thread Starter 
Its funny, I always look at my fellow classmates and think 'if this is my competition I'll me made in the shade.'

I understand why culinary students are not looked upon favorably but I just want a chance to show the world what I have. I am 4 years older than all my peers and I have had a healthy dose of real life to put things in perspective.

Bit of a tangent here, but I think the approach that most 'students' take to school is disgusting. Their first priority is getting laid and drunk and just coast through. They show up to class hung-over and complain about their misadventures from the prior evening. I always ask them 'then why did you do it' and get the same responses... why not, its fun.

I actually respect my place in school, probably because I had go through so much to just get there. I can still have fun, but I see people party EVERY night, no respect for themselves or for the class they have to get for and work...

sorry, I am just really frustrated right now
post #5 of 12
You need to differentiate yourself from others on your cover letter then. Obviously you can't say that all the other students wanna do is get drunk. Willing to learn, work hard, more mature, all this can be said in your cover letter. If you have had previous job experience you can also list that. Getting that first job is the killer man.
post #6 of 12
Thread Starter 

Its not just how I approach school either. I perform better than 95% of the other students in my class. They look to me for help, advice, ideas. One of them inadvertently called me 'chef' when I told him to do something. We all had a good chuckle about it when our instructor came over to me, put his hand on my shoulder and said 'dont worry, the title suits you.'

I'm really good at this, but not just good, I was born to do this.

edit: so many people throw around the phrase "passion for food" and for a while I wasn't even sure if I had it, but I do know what I DO have is a passion for being the best.

I just can't seem to get this across to employers
post #7 of 12
Well, you could ask some chefs in the pro forum to look at your resume and see if they can help you out.
post #8 of 12

Feel free to email me your cv if you would like some positive feedback from an employer's point of view.
Kiwisizzler's blog

Good food is food that tastes of what it is!
Kiwisizzler's blog

Good food is food that tastes of what it is!
post #9 of 12
Thread Starter 
I wish I had something more substantial to send. My Resume reads like a template, empty for the most part.

I'll try to get something to you however.

thank you

edit: sent
post #10 of 12
>>> I am 4 years older than all my peers and I have had a healthy dose of real life to put things in perspective.

presuming you did something in addition to surfing / skateboarding over those four years, you have some kind of skill set. pick out the bits-that-fits and cite your experience with later training as a cookie.

organization, people skills, time management, priority setting, production under pressure . . . these are things that transfer from one "occupation" to pretty much any other.
post #11 of 12
Except academia, I'm afraid. The only one that transfers is "production under pressure," and "under pressure" means "no more than 3 years." But then, you'd have to be totally bonkers to want to work in the academy. I know. I'm nuts.... :crazy:
post #12 of 12
Thread Starter 
I was a research rat... history major. I read and wrote, organization was the name of the game for me. The plan was to write or become a professor/teacher, it didn't work out.
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