First of all, I know you're all tired about this topic. I am, too. I've read every single thing I found, but I still couldn't find an answer! That's why I'm here.
Let's begin by saying this: I am on my last semester of business management college, and am working as a senior auditor in one of the big fours (four largest audit companies in the world). I don't hate my job, but I don't love it. It does bring me benefits, though: I have a secure future. I make good money considering my age. Sometime I work long hours, but most of my weekends are free. I can't really complain.
I am, however, willing to walk away from all that in order to go to pasty school. I've made all the math and, with a little help from my parents, I'm able to afford everything (school fees, housing etc) without taking any loans.
I just have to ask one thing: How to survive on a pastry chef salary?! I've read many places that the average salary is of $45K - $50K a year. Is it really true?! That's almost the same as a basic auditor salary!! I mean, I've researched tons of websites and most salary are around $25K a year. Can I survive with that? I don't want to depend on my parents and I'm definitely not counting on a husband to support me.
Help me! I've made some basic math. I'm not from France or anywhere near Europe, but I've calculated this (monthly expenses, based on internet data):
$ 500 of housing
$ 200 of food
$ 100 of electricity bills, water, internet etc etc
$ 200 other expenses (I don't know... Going out? Emergency expenses?)
Total of $1000/month.
Am I missing something? I must be! I mean, because with a $25K salary a year, considering taxes etc, I'm pretty sure this is doable, and on the long run I'm hoping the salary will increase?
I know pastry job is a tough job, but honestly, I'd rather work long hours on something I love than long hours on something I find merely tolerable.
Thanks a lot for your time and patience!