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Hey Joshua, welcome to ChefTalk.com! Have you ever baked professionally? If not before you sign up for culinary school go and work in a professional pastry shop. You could do this in a local restaurant or hotel or full blown pastry shop. I always encourage people to do this because there is a world of difference between "I love to cook" and "I love to cook professionally". It is not enough to just enjoy baking or pastries you have to really embrace the business and the lifestyle and what it is all about. Long hours, weekends, nights, time away from family and loved ones.

As for jobs right out of culinary school they are often base jobs starting points and there is no salary you will be hourly. If you were to start working in a large organization like a hotel, hospital or restaurant group you would probably start at above minimum wage and also receive benefits. My guess is you would probably start at around 13.00 an hour
 

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I am with @chefross we don't want to discourage just offering you a realistic approach. Culinary school like most colleges is very costly. Before making a huge investment work in the business for 6 months or a year then see how you feel. You will start out at the bottom but that is the right place to start. Remember being a great cook (in my opinion) is 20% excellent technique and 80% attitude.
 
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