Cooking Classes in NY with Degree Program Options

Research cooking classes in New York, which currently has more than 20 colleges and universities offering programs. Read an overview of courses, tuition info and program options for eleven of these schools and decide which program is right for you.

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

Essential Information

New York is home to more than 20 schools that offer cooking classes, and eleven of the state's largest options are discussed below. The 2- and 4-year schools profiled include nine community colleges that are affiliated with the State University of New York (SUNY), one Ivy League school and a famous culinary institute.

Students can develop hands-on experience in student kitchens and laboratories. Additional expertise might be gained by working in campus-based restaurants or participating in internships. Some of the certificate and associate's degree programs offered include:

  • Culinary Arts
  • Hotel Administration
  • Culinary Arts Management
  • Food Management
  • Hospitality Management
  • Hotel Technology Administration
  • Food Service Administration and Restaurant Management
  • Food and Nutrition
  • Professional Cooking Certificate
  • Travel and Tourism

Culinary Institute of America

Although it is the smallest school on the list, the Culinary Institute of America has three stateside campuses and one international site, including a location in Hyde Park, New York. At the institute, undergraduates have the opportunity to train with professional chefs and maîtres d'hôtel, while learning front- and back-of-the-house operations in the school's award-winning restaurants.

The Associate of Occupational Studies in Culinary Arts typically takes 21 months to complete, but a 15-month option is available for students with at least two-and-a-half years of experience in the food service industry. In addition to a course in culinary basics, the curriculum includes topics in a la carte, banquet and restaurant cooking, international cuisine and product identification.

Students who successfully complete the associate's program can pursue a Bachelor of Professional Studies in Culinary Management. The program includes a course or a thesis in advanced baking or cooking. Aspiring professionals in both the associate's and the bachelor's programs also participate in an 18-week externship.

  • Programs Offered: Associate of Occupational Studies in Culinary Arts,
    Bachelor of Professional Studies in Culinary Arts Management
  • Tuition & Fees (2012-2013): $27,130*
  • School Type & Setting: 4-year, private not-for-profit; large suburb

Cornell University

The world's first undergraduate program in hospitality management was offered at Cornell University in Ithaca in 1922. Today, the school is the only Ivy League institution that offers a business management program with an emphasis on hospitality. In addition to its four degree options, the School of Hotel Administration provides students with the opportunity to spend time abroad or participate in a collaborative degree program with the Culinary Institute of America.

The Bachelor of Science in Hotel Administration includes a business and management core, optional concentrations and an 800-hour work experience. Through required and elective coursework, undergraduates have the chance to study food service principles and practices, catering, healthy food preparation and the relationship between culture and cuisine.

  • Programs Offered: Bachelor of Science in Hotel Administration
  • Tuition & Fees (2012-2013): $43,413*
  • School Type & Setting: 4-year, private not-for-profit; small city

Erie Community College (SUNY)

This Buffalo-based school is one of 64 in the State University of New York (SUNY) system, as well as one of the four largest community colleges in the network. Through the Business and Public Service Division, students can pursue an Associate of Occupational Studies in Culinary Arts. Professional development opportunities include the chance to gain some real-life experience at the Statler dining rooms, the campus café and the college cafeterias.

The curriculum is designed to provide undergraduates with a background in, among other areas, American regional cuisine, garde manger (cold kitchen), hot food preparation and international cuisine. Along with training in culinary basics and advanced food preparation, students can learn how to design and layout a kitchen.

  • Programs Offered: Associate of Occupational Studies in Culinary Arts
  • Tuition & Fees (2012-2013): $4,444 in-state; $8,344 out-of-state*
  • School Type & Setting: 2-year, public; large city

Mohawk Valley Community College (SUNY)

The largest college between the cities of Albany and Syracuse is located in Utica. At Mohawk Valley Community College, students can earn an Associate of Occupational Studies in Culinary Arts Management, and the program includes three sequential courses in commercial food preparation.

At the beginning level, future food service professionals become acquainted with a variety of cooking techniques while preparing, among other items, salads, sandwiches and pastas. As they progress, they also learn how to make a variety of eggs, fish, meat and poultry recipes.

In the second year, students have the opportunity to function as chef managers, edit recipes and plan menus. As a somewhat flexible course of study, the degree plan also allows for a specialization in baking and pastry making.

  • Programs Offered: Associate of Occupational Studies in Culinary Arts Management
  • Tuition & Fees (2012-2013): $4,130 in-state; $7,710 out-of-state*
  • School Type & Setting: 2-year, public; small city

Monroe Community College (SUNY)

Rochester's Monroe Community College is a multi-campus school located in one of the state's three largest cities. Hospitality management is one of the top five declared majors at the college, and the multi-million dollar instructional facilities include a 42-seat restaurant, culinary labs and student kitchens.

The requirements for the 35-credit certificate programs in food management and hotel management include an introductory course in the culinary arts, as well as a cooperative education experience. Students who pursue the 31-credit certificate in culinary arts also take a course in advanced food preparation.

The Associate of Applied Science in Hospitality Management program includes concentrations in food or hotel service, and the curriculum for both areas of study offers beginning and advanced courses in the culinary arts. Other food service administration courses cover topics in baking, healthy cooking and international cuisine.

  • Programs Offered: Culinary Arts Certificate,
    Food Management Certificate,
    Hotel Management Certificate,
    Associate of Applied Science in Hospitality Management
  • Tuition & Fees (2012-2013): $3,772 in-state; $6,912 out-of-state*
  • School Type & Setting: 2-year, public; large suburb

Nassau Community College (SUNY)

In Garden City on Long Island, students can attend class at the largest single-campus community college in New York State. The Hospitality and Business Department offers certificates in dietary management and food service, as well as associate's degrees in food and nutrition, food service and hotel technology.

Students in the food and nutrition, dietary management and hotel technology programs take a course in food production that can help them acquire basic cooking skills and learn how to maintain a safe and sanitary kitchen. Undergraduates pursuing a degree in food service administration and restaurant management can also receive training in advanced food production.

In addition to on-campus work, four of the five certificate and degree programs provide aspiring professionals with the opportunity to participate in a field experience, hospitality internship or an industry partnership (Associate of Science in Food and Nutrition not included).

  • Programs Offered: Dietary Management Certificate,
    Food Service Technology Certificate,
    Associate of Applied Science in Food Service Administration and Restaurant Management,
    Associate of Applied Science in Hotel Technology Administration,
    Associate of Science in Food and Nutrition
  • Tuition & Fees (2012-2013): $4,495 in-state; $8,485 out-of-state*
  • School Type & Setting: 2-year, public; large suburb

Niagara County Community College (SUNY)

This Sanborn community college is located in northwestern New York near Buffalo, Niagara Falls and Toronto, Canada. The Business and Hospitality Division offers a number of related programs, including those associated with baking and pastry making, wine and beverage management, culinary arts and winery operations.

Unique to the culinary skills certificate program is the opportunity to help prepare food for 2,000 or more people per day. The curriculum includes training in breakfast and lunch preparation, baking and basic cooking, and credits are fully transferable to the school's Associate of Applied Science in Culinary Arts program.

In addition to the aforementioned courses, aspiring chefs who pursue the 2-year course of study receive training in American and international cuisine, garde manger and sauce making. They also participate in a 400-hour internship at the Niagara Falls Culinary Institute, as well as another college-approved site.

  • Programs Offered: Culinary Skills Certificate,
    Associate of Applied Science in Culinary Arts
  • Tuition & Fees (2012-2013): $4,040 in-state; $9,584 out-of-state*
  • School Type & Setting: 2-year, public; rural

Onondaga Community College (SUNY)

Syracuse is the geographical center of the state and home to Onondaga Community College. Special college features include the Disney College Program, an opportunity for qualified students to enjoy a paid internship at the Walt Disney World Resort in Orlando, Florida.

The professional cooking certificate requires one year to complete and includes a 400-hour hospitality internship, as well as optional trips to New York City's International Hotel/Motel and Restaurant Trade Show and Las Vegas. In addition to a basic course in commercial food preparation, the curriculum covers topics in advanced culinary arts, catering and quantity food preparation.

Onondaga also offers Associate of Applied Science degrees in culinary management, food service management and hotel management. Common coursework includes training in basic and quantity food preparation, as well as a 400-hour work experience.

  • Programs Offered: Professional Cooking Certificate,
    Associate of Applied Science in Culinary Management,
    Associate of Applied Science in Food Service/Institutional Management,
    Associate of Applied Science in Hospitality Management
  • Tuition & Fees (2012-2013): $4,634 in-state; $8,684 out-of-state*
  • School Type & Setting: 2-year, public; large suburb

Rockland Community College (SUNY)

The only community college in Rockland County is located in Suffern, and the school's Hudson Valley campus is just 25 miles away from New York City. The college offers an Associate of Applied Science in Hospitality, as well as a more specialized program in travel and tourism. Both degree options include a substantial number of electives and a food service practicum.

The 2-year program in hospitality requires one course in quantity food production. To fulfill the elective requirements for either degree plan, students may also be able to take courses in British and Kosher cooking, garde manger and global cuisine.

  • Programs Offered: Associate of Applied Science in Hospitality,
    Associate of Applied Science in Hospitality - Travel and Tourism
  • Tuition & Fees (2012-2013): $4,360 in-state; $8,385 out-of-state*
  • School Type & Setting: 2-year, public; large suburb

Schenectady County Community College (SUNY)

Schenectady's community college is situated along the Mohawk River in the Capital District, and the school offers a variety of career, short-term training and academic transfer programs. At the college, students can earn an assistant chef certificate or associate's degree in the culinary arts or hotel and restaurant management.

The requirements for the 32-credit certificate and culinary arts degree programs include three courses in commercial food preparation and baking. Students pursuing the Associate of Occupational Studies in Culinary Arts complete a classic cuisine sequence that emphasizes line cooking and the responsibilities of a rotisseur, saucier, sous chef and tournant (relief cook). Aspiring chefs also have the chance to explore the basic tastes of bitter, salty, sour and sweet, learn about contemporary culinary trends and work in college restaurant. To earn a degree in hotel and restaurant management, students must complete the introductory courses in food production and baking.

  • Programs Offered: Assistant Chef Certificate,
    Associate of Applied Science in Hotel and Restaurant Management,
    Associate of Occupational Studies in Culinary Arts
  • Tuition & Fees (2012-2013): $3,743 in-state; $7,127 out-of-state*
  • School Type & Setting: 2-year, public; small city

Suffolk County Community College (SUNY)

Suffolk County Community College is a Long Island-based school with three campuses in Brentwood, Riverhead and Selden. This is the largest community college in the state, and the school's culinary arts program has been featured on Long Island's The East End local television show.

The certificate in restaurant management is designed for students who already hold a college degree or work in the industry. It requires 31 credits to complete and includes an introduction to commercial food preparation as well as courses in American, Asian, French and Mediterranean cooking.

These courses can also be found in the Associate of Applied Science program. To earn the degree, students must also complete a 200-hour internship.

  • Programs Offered: Culinary Arts/Restaurant Management Certificate,
    Associate of Applied Science in Culinary Arts/Restaurant Management
  • Tuition & Fees (2012-2013): $4,830 in-state; $8,820 out-of-state*
  • School Type & Setting: 2-year, public; large suburb

School Comparison: At a Glance

School Name School Type & Setting Culinary Arts Degree Programs Offered Undergraduate Tuition & Fees (2012-2013)
Culinary Institute of America 4-year, private not-for-profit; large suburb Associate of Occupational Studies in Culinary Arts,
Bachelor of Professional Studies in Culinary Arts Management
$27,130*
Cornell University 4-year, private not-for-profit; small city Bachelor of Science in Hotel Administration $43,413*
Erie Community College (SUNY) 2-year, public; large city Associate of Occupational Studies in Culinary Arts $4,444 in-state; $8,344 out-of-state*
Mohawk Valley Community College (SUNY) 2-year, public; small city Associate of Occupational Studies in Culinary Arts Management $4,130 in-state; $7,710 out-of-state*
Monroe Community College (SUNY) 2-year, public; large suburb Culinary Arts Certificate,
Food Management Certificate,
Hotel Management Certificate,
Associate of Applied Science in Hospitality Management
$3,772 in-state; $6,912 out-of-state*
Nassau Community College (SUNY) 2-year, public; large suburb Dietary Management Certificate,
Food Service Technology Certificate,
Associate of Applied Science in Food Service Administration and Restaurant Management,
Associate of Applied Science in Hotel Technology Administration,
Associate of Science in Food and Nutrition
$4,495 in-state; $8,485 out-of-state*
Niagara County Community College (SUNY) 2-year, public; rural Culinary Skills Certificate,
Associate of Applied Science in Culinary Arts
$4,040 in-state; $9,584 out-of-state*
Onondaga Community College (SUNY) 2-year, public; large suburb Professional Cooking Certificate,
Associate of Applied Science in Culinary Management,
Associate of Applied Science in Food Service/Institutional Management,
Associate of Applied Science in Hospitality Management
$4,634 in-state; $8,684 out-of-state*
Rockland Community College (SUNY) 2-year, public; large suburb Associate of Applied Science in Hospitality,
Associate of Applied Science in Hospitality - Travel and Tourism
$4,360 in-state; $8,385 out-of-state*
Schenectady County Community College (SUNY) 2-year, public; small city Assistant Chef Certificate,
Associate of Applied Science in Hotel and Restaurant Management,
Associate of Occupational Studies in Culinary Arts
$3,743 in-state; $7,127 out-of-state*
Suffolk County Community College (SUNY) 2-year, public; large suburb Culinary Arts/Restaurant Management Certificate,
Associate of Applied Science in Culinary Arts/Restaurant Management
$4,830 in-state; $8,820 out-of-state*

Sources: *NCES College Navigator

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