Kitchen Management Schools and Colleges: How to Choose

Students in kitchen management programs learn about safety practices in kitchen facilities, adequate lighting, proper ventilation, and enclosed storage for food preparation tools and supplies. Students can find these programs at community colleges, culinary institutes, and 4-year colleges and universities.

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While there are no standardized academic requirements for becoming a kitchen manager, formal training in the culinary arts can instruct students in different aspects of food service such as marketing, cost management, contracts, and advanced preparation techniques. Certificates, associate's degrees, and bachelor's degrees are available in the culinary arts, as well as hospitality or restaurant management.

Culinary Schools

These schools offer undergraduate culinary programs.

College/University Location Institution Type Degrees Offered Undergraduate Tuition and Fees 2015-2016*
Institute of Culinary Education New York, NY <2-year, Private for-profit Diploma $37,160
Culinary Institute of America at Hyde Park Hyde Park, NY 4-year, Private not-for-profit Bachelor's $29,250
Culinary Institute of America at Greystone Helena, CA 4-year, Private not-for-profit Certificate, Associate's $29,170
The International Culinary Center New York, NY <2-year, Private for-profit Certificate $47,900
Kendall College Chicago, IL 4-year, Private for-profit Associate's, Bachelor's $19,459
New England Culinary Institute Montpelier, VT 4-year, Private for-profit Associate's, Bachelor's $89,710
L'Academie de Cuisine Gaithersburg, MD <2-year, Private for-profit Certificate $29,775
Auguste Escoffier School of Culinary Arts Austin, TX; Boulder, CO <2-year, Private for-profit Diploma, Associate's $25,440
Johnson & Wales University Multiple Locations 4-year, Private not-for-profit Certificate, Associate's, Bachelor's $29,566

Source: *National Center for Education Statistics

Find schools that offer these popular programs

  • Baking and Pastry Arts
  • Bartending
  • Catering and Restaurant Management
  • Chef Training
  • Food Preparation
  • Food Server and Dining Room Mgmt
  • Institutional Food Worker
  • Meat Cutting

School and College Selection Criteria

When selecting a kitchen management school, keep the following considerations in mind:

  • Students should look for schools with modern food preparation equipment and facilities provisioned with applicable utensils to maximize practical learning.
  • Faculty with knowledge and experience in specific areas, such as kitchen management techniques, food types, culinary repertoire expansion, and food preparation cost management, could be advantageous to students with specialized interests.
  • Since kitchen management training often requires close supervision of the student's individual techniques, student-to-teacher ratio should be considered.
  • Partial or entire online culinary arts courses may exist, which provide more convenience for working students.

Certificates in the Culinary Arts

Culinary arts career certificates often last 12-18 months and may focus on a aspect of the culinary trade, such as baking, catering, nutrition, ethnic and regional cuisines, specialty diets, or oenology (the study of wine). Career certificate programs intended for professional preparation and recognition typically require applicants to have completed high school or a GED. Programs include lectures, demonstrations, hands-on experiences, and field trips. A supervised work experience is required by some programs as well.

Associate's Degrees in Culinary Arts

Associate's degree programs prepare graduates to operate and manage professional-grade kitchens, such as restaurants, banquet halls, cafeterias, and private entertainment facilities. Associate's programs often require internship experiences and generally take two years to complete.

Bachelor's Degrees in Culinary Arts

In a 4-year bachelor's degree program in the culinary arts, core courses are on topics such as international cuisine, baking and pastry arts, hospitality facilities design and management. There is often an internship component with a work study experience. Some programs also require a capstone project.

Students who are interested in kitchen management should look for culinary programs at the diploma through bachelor's degree levels with well-equipped facilities and staff who are experienced in a student's area of interest. Students may also consider a program's student-to-teacher ratio and the availability of online courses.

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