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First of all, any one of the schools that you have chosen will provide an excellent education in culinary arts. However, they are expensive and those diplomas will benefit you only within the food industry and no where else.

When a cook applied to work for me, I typically did not care if they had a culinary arts degree. As a chef, I was more interested in their skill, experience, technique, creativity and ability to adapt to my kitchen. The chef that ran my kitchen for more than a decade was not a culinary school graduate. However, I assure you that she is more than qualified to teach in any culinary school. This is one of the few professions where a formal degree is not necessary.

I am not trying to dissuade you from pursuing a culinary arts degree nor am I trying to downplay the value of a formal culinary arts education. Rather, I am simply pointing out that your stress over what school and where you should go is really rather unnecessary.

What I would suggest you do is spend another year or two working in a commercial kitchen. If, at the end of that time, you still retain the passion and desire to formalize your education by going to culinary school, then, by all means, have at it. The reason why I suggest this course of action is the average career lifespan in the food industry is about 18 months. Culinary school is a very costly and labor intensive prospect to gamble on a profession where the average career lasts less than 2 years.

I have asked this question of every young cook who has ever asked for my advice: "What makes you think you want a career in the food industry." The reason why I ask that question is because I have seen many young, eager chefs realize after only a few months or years that this life is not for them. Each of them loved the stress, the chaos, the challenges and each had a passion for food and were quite talented. But, this life is a grind and its not for everyone regardless of aptitude. For some, it only takes a few months to realize this fact. For others, it could take a couple of years or more. However, no one knows for certain until they know.

Good luck. :)
 
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