Cake Decorating Classes in New York City with School Options

The New York City area has roughly a dozen schools that offer cake decorating classes, including three that are located within 16 miles of the downtown. Learn about the programs, admission info and program requirements for these three schools to make an informed education decision.

New York City Schools with Cake Decorating Classes

Students who are interested in cake decorating can find training through continuing education or personal enrichment classes, as well as formal degree programs in hospitality. Learn about the cake-decorating options at three colleges affiliated with the City University of New York (CUNY), and find a comparison table with at-a-glance facts about the individual schools. A follow-up paragraph with other school options can be found below the table.

  • The New York City College of Technology in Brooklyn, located a little less than two miles from downtown Manhattan, offers an associate's degree program in hospitality management that includes baking and pastry classes.
  • Hostos Community College in the Bronx is located about five-and-a-half miles from Manhattan's downtown and offers cake decorating classes through its personal enrichment program.
  • At nearly 16 miles, York College in Queens is the furthest from downtown Manhattan and also offers a personal enrichment program that includes classes in cake decorating.

New York City College of Technology (CUNY)

New York City College of Technology is a public college that's part of the City University of New York. Its three schools offer more than 65 certificate and degree programs and a faculty of more than 1,500 full- and part-time members; it primarily confers associate degrees. The School of Professional Studies offers a hospitality management associate degree program that includes cake decorating instruction.

Associate in Applied Science in Hospitality Management

The 2-year hospitality management program features small class sizes and prepares students for careers in the hospitality industry while providing them with a curriculum of technical courses and liberal arts and science courses. Course topics include hospitality accounting, food and beverage cost control, dining room operations and culinary arts. Students learn the art of cake decorating through two required baking and pastry arts courses.

Eligible students have internship opportunities at hotels, resorts or restaurants throughout the United States and Western Europe. There are also several clubs, workshops and culinary organizations students can join to obtain experience and communicate with students sharing their interests. Students are required to purchase their own uniforms and tools.

Hostos Community College (CUNY)

Eugenio María de Hostos Community College, commonly known as Hostos Community College, is part of the City University of New York (CUNY) system and provides local higher education opportunities in the South Bronx. In addition to certificate and degree programs, Hostos offers online courses and continuing education. The continuing education and workforce development division offers two cake decorating classes.

Cake Decorating for Beginners

The beginning cake decorating class takes almost two months to complete. Students attend seven 3-hour sessions for a total of 21 hours. Topics covered include preparing the surface of a cake, covering a cake board and cake construction. Students also learn different cake styles and icing types. By the end of the class, they know how to create and decorate a variety of everyday and special occasion cakes. Participants must pay additional fees for materials.

Sugar Craft for Cake Decorating

The 10-hour sugar craft class is held for two hours on five Saturdays. Using molds and special cutters, students learn to make delicate flowers using gum paste. Other cake decorating techniques are also introduced. Participants must pay additional fees for materials.

York College (CUNY)

A senior college of CUNY, York College offers various academic options within its three schools: School of Arts and Sciences, School of Business and Information Systems and School of Health and Behavioral Sciences. Additionally, York College's Continuing and Professional Education program offers more than 200 courses, including a cake decorating class, plus 200 online courses.

Cake Decorating I

The cake decorating class at York is held for two hours on Saturday mornings. Through seven sessions, students learn the fundamentals of baking and decorating cakes. The baking portion covers coloring, splitting and leveling the cake to prepare it for decorating. In addition to basic decorating skills, students also learn to assemble the cake to give it a professional look. Students learn to create stars, shell borders, piping and clowns.

Comparison of Schools

Although continuing education and personal enrichment classes are typically offered on a flat-fee basis, the following table includes information about financial aid, tuition and admissions for students who would like to take their interest in baking and pastry making to the next level.

New York City College of Technology (CUNY) Hostos Community College (CUNY) York College (CUNY)
School Type 4-year, public 2-year, public 4-year, public
Total Enrollment (2011) 15,961* 7,078* 8,242*
Campus Setting Large city Large city Large city
Tuition $5,469 for in-state; $11,379 for out-of-state (2011-2012)* $199 and $99, respectively, not including materials (effective 2013)** $254, includes materials (effective 2013)***
% of Full-Time Beginning Students Receiving Any Form of Financial Aid (2011) 84%* N/A for personal enrichment students** N/A for personal enrichment students***
Acceptance Rate (2011) 77%* N/A - open admissions* 40%*
Retention Rate (2011) 74% for full-time, 67% for part-time students*64% for full-time, 61% for part-time students* 78% for full-time, 61% for part-time students*
Undergraduate Graduation Rate (2011) 15% (39% transfer-out) for students beginning in 2005* 8% (14% transfer-out) for students beginning in 2008* 20% (47% transfer-out) for students beginning in 2005*

Source: *NCES College Navigator, **Hostos Community College, ***York College.

Other School Options

Students can also find cake decorating classes at Hudson County Community College, a 2-year public school located about four miles from downtown New York City in Jersey City, NJ, and the 2-year public Westchester Community College, just outside New York City. Westchester Community College is part of the State University of New York; its four cake baking and decorating classes are held at the Mount Vernon Extension Center, which is located 21.6 miles from downtown New York City.

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