Freedom huh,this can apply in several ways as pointed out by my fellow chefs/cooks,sure,i believe its true (with your proposed experience,tho a degree is not essential-but u can command more $$) you have the FREEDOM (1) to work around the world, as,unlike those in factorys facing retrenchment due to over production/slow sales,people will always need to eat-therefore culinary people will always be in demand,in work no matter what country. As for licences/visas/restrictions well that differs in each country a little,tho cooking itself is still cooking,you can go far career wise,travel far,and keep climbing the ladder with better pay and bigger challenges in bigger places for life.Go as high and as far as you want, (freedom) its rewarding but no picnic-you WILL work hard to gain this-so way up which freedoms for you-if its lifestyle-as below,go drive a bus.
FREEDOM (2) of lifestyle?-mm-i speak from a restaurant view only as opposed to cafe/other eateries with daytime hours-its demanding,hard work that consumes your day-and life-therefore-little freedom,much like the on call doctors/medical/legal whom work simular hours here-12-15 hours is not uncommon in chefing/medical-i have done 17 straight before.Hard on relationships/family/pets etc.
FREEDOM (3) can relate to creative art-with food/ingredients,a culinaire must think & make new exciting dishes with taste,colour,texture,style,flair,aroma etc we have a certain degree of freedom to do this-depending on how long the bosses leash is.
As for your degree/certificate-it will be highly regarded as will accompanying refferences from restaurants (at the very least),however,like pete says in his post, performance guarentees everything-"anyone can talk the talk-but can you walk the walk?" meaning sure u got a certificate-but can you perform? ive worked with many nationalites,many of whom hold a certificate or degree-yet cant produce a basic mayonaise-the performance...if you will
As for regional differences-what a great way to learn, thats part of the adventure isnt it? a bit of the lingo might help-like MMMM Bonjorno"Bella donna".
Possible to find jobs overseas?-you betcha-sites like this one we're at or,eg,www.cookwork.com to name one of many im sure has a job section-ive seen jobs at the 7 star "Berge" hotel in emirites among many others,uk jobs are advertised regularly on seek.com.au and if i looked im sure id find others in Europe-my casual cauldnt fill his shift-cos he got a contract o/s n flew out in just days.........
Where theres a will-theres a way-but it will take passion,determination,guts and some skill.
best of luck.
still not sure-come have a chat, firstname.lastname@example.org
Originally Posted by international
As the time for me to choose a serious career path becomes closer and closer, I find myself filled with questions which I'd like to ask educated chefs.
My number one priority in a lifelong career is freedom. Many serious careers suffer from lack of freedom such as medical and legal careers. The main thing which geared me towards culinary school was the apparent freedom that chefs seem to have.
Theoretically - a chef can work anywhere. Whether they live in New York, or San Francisco, or Paris, food is always there. There are no limits, no state-bound licenses, and no permits for working as a chef. All that's required is knowledge about food and you're good to go...or so I thought.
To all the educated chefs out there, is a culinary degree and a few years experience all you need to work anywhere? Let's say I have a 2 year degree from Johnson and Wales and a few years experience in fine New York restaurants. Would I able to take a one-way ticket to say Paris, or Tuscany, or Luxembourg and find a job, or would the regional differences and language barriers make it impossible?
Is it possible for a chef to find jobs internationally, regardless of compensation, or is it just unrealistic? Is it unrealistic to invest in a culinary education expecting that it will be of use around the world, or will I be forced to fly back to America and keep a stationary job in one city for the rest of my life?
If anyone has ever tried this, or know anyone who has tried something similar, I would appreciate some serious feedback...who could I talk to about a question like this?