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Chef Training Major

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Chef Training

3,937 Associates's Degrees Annually
172 Bachelor's Degrees Annually
#10 in Popularity (Associate's)
$36,190 Median Salary

Types of Degrees Chef Training Majors Are Getting

The following table lists how many culinary arts/chef training graduations there were in 2020-2021 for each degree level.

Education Level Number of Grads
Associate Degree 3,941
Undergraduate Certificate 3,038
Basic Certificate 1,901
Bachelor’s Degree 172

What Chef Training Majors Need to Know

In an O*NET survey, culinary arts/chef training majors were asked to rate what knowledge areas, skills, and abilities were important in their occupations. These answers were weighted on a scale of 1 to 5 with 5 being the most important.

Knowledge Areas for Culinary Arts/Chef Training Majors

According to O*NET survey takers, a major in culinary arts/chef training should prepare you for careers in which you will need to be knowledgeable in the following areas:

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  • Food Production - Knowledge of techniques and equipment for planting, growing, and harvesting food products (both plant and animal) for consumption, including storage/handling techniques.
  • Customer and Personal Service - Knowledge of principles and processes for providing customer and personal services. This includes customer needs assessment, meeting quality standards for services, and evaluation of customer satisfaction.
  • English Language - Knowledge of the structure and content of the English language including the meaning and spelling of words, rules of composition, and grammar.
  • Administration and Management - Knowledge of business and management principles involved in strategic planning, resource allocation, human resources modeling, leadership technique, production methods, and coordination of people and resources.
  • Production and Processing - Knowledge of raw materials, production processes, quality control, costs, and other techniques for maximizing the effective manufacture and distribution of goods.

Skills for Culinary Arts/Chef Training Majors

When studying culinary arts/chef training, you’ll learn many skills that will help you be successful in a wide range of jobs - even those that do not require a degree in the field. The following is a list of some of the most common skills needed for careers associated with this major:

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  • Monitoring - Monitoring/Assessing performance of yourself, other individuals, or organizations to make improvements or take corrective action.
  • Speaking - Talking to others to convey information effectively.
  • Coordination - Adjusting actions in relation to others’ actions.
  • Active Listening - Giving full attention to what other people are saying, taking time to understand the points being made, asking questions as appropriate, and not interrupting at inappropriate times.
  • Critical Thinking - Using logic and reasoning to identify the strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions, conclusions or approaches to problems.

Abilities for Culinary Arts/Chef Training Majors

As you progress with your culinary arts/chef training degree, there are several abilities you should pick up that will help you in whatever related career you choose. These abilities include:

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  • Problem Sensitivity - The ability to tell when something is wrong or is likely to go wrong. It does not involve solving the problem, only recognizing there is a problem.
  • Oral Comprehension - The ability to listen to and understand information and ideas presented through spoken words and sentences.
  • Oral Expression - The ability to communicate information and ideas in speaking so others will understand.
  • Deductive Reasoning - The ability to apply general rules to specific problems to produce answers that make sense.
  • Near Vision - The ability to see details at close range (within a few feet of the observer).

What Can You Do With a Chef Training Major?

Below is a list of occupations associated with culinary arts/chef training:

Job Title Job Growth Rate Median Salary
Chefs and Head Cooks 9.6% $48,460
Cooks 9.0% $28,650
Cooks, Private Household 5.2% $37,590
Cooks, Restaurant 11.8% $26,530
First-Line Supervisors of Food Preparation and Serving Workers 9.3% $32,450

Who Is Getting an Associate’s Degree in Chef Training?

3,941 Associate's Degrees Annually
51% Percent Women
45% Percent Racial-Ethnic Minorities*
Roughly 51% of the graduates are women, and 49% are men.

Racial-Ethnic Diversity

At the countrywide level, the racial-ethnic distribution of culinary arts/chef training majors is as follows:

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Race/Ethnicity Number of Grads
Asian 160
Black or African American 770
Hispanic or Latino 668
White 1,817
International Students 172
Other Races/Ethnicities 354

Geographic Diversity

Students from other countries are interested in Culinary Arts/Chef Training, too. About 4.4% of those with this major are international students.

How Much Do Chef Training Majors Make?

Salaries According to BLS

Average salaries range from $30,360 to $41,240 (25th to 75th percentile) for careers related to culinary arts/chef training. This range includes all degree levels, so the salary for a person with just a bachelor’s degree may be a little less and the one for a person with an advanced degree may be a little more.

To put that into context, according to BLS data from the first quarter of 2020, the typical high school graduate makes between $30,000 and $57,900 a year (25th through 75th percentile). The average person with a bachelor’s degree (any field) makes between $45,600 and $99,000. Advanced degree holders make the most with salaries between $55,600 and $125,400.

Median Salary for a Chef Training Major  ( 30360 to 41240 )
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250K
Median Salary for a High School Graduate  ( 30000 to 57900 )
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Median Salary for a Bachelor's Degree Holder  ( 45600 to 99000 )
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Median Salary for an Advanced Degree Holder  ( 55600 to 125400 )
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Some degrees associated with culinary arts/chef training may require an advanced degree, while others may not even require a bachelor’s in the field. Whatever the case may be, pursuing more education usually means that more career options will be available to you.

Find out what the typical degree level is for culinary arts/chef training careers below.

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Education Level Percentage of Workers
Less than a High School Diploma 16.5%
High School Diploma - or the equivalent (for example, GED) 34.2%
Post-Secondary Certificate - awarded for training completed after high school (for example, in agriculture or natural resources, computer services, personal or culinary services, engineering technologies, healthcare, construction trades, mechanic and repair technologies, or precision production) 20.3%
Some College Courses 9.4%
Associate’s Degree (or other 2-year degree) 17.2%
Bachelor’s Degree 2.9%
First Professional Degree - awarded for completion of a program that: requires at least 2 years of college work before entrance into the program, includes a total of at least 6 academic years of work to complete, and provides all remaining academic requirements to begin practice in a profession. 0.9%
Post-Doctoral Training 0.9%

Online Chef Training Programs

In 2020-2021, 410 schools offered a culinary arts/chef training program of some type. The following table lists the number of programs by degree level, along with how many schools offered online courses in the field.

Degree Level Colleges Offering Programs Colleges Offering Online Classes
Certificate (Less Than 1 Year) 0 0
Certificate (1-2 years) 254 3
Certificate (2-4 Years) 25 0
Associate’s Degree 283 2
Bachelor’s Degree 0 0
Post-Baccalaureate 0 0
Master’s Degree 0 0
Post-Master’s 0 0
Doctor’s Degree (Research) 0 0
Doctor’s Degree (Professional Practice) 0 0
Doctor’s Degree (Other) 0 0

Is a Degree in Chef Training Worth It?

The median salary for a culinary arts/chef training grad is $36,190 per year. This is based on the weighted average of the most common careers associated with the major.

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You may also be interested in one of the following majors related to culinary arts/chef training.

Major Number of Grads
Baking & Pastry Arts/Baker/Pastry Chef 4,322
General Cooking & Related Culinary Arts 3,156
Restaurant, Culinary, & Catering Management/Manager 1,380
Food Preparation/Professional Cooking/Kitchen Assistant 801
Other Culinary Arts & Related Services 411
Culinary Science/Culinology 196
Bartending/Bartender 183
Institutional Food Workers 157
Food Service, Waiter/Waitress, & Dining Room Management/Manager 84
Meat Cutting/Meat Cutter 35
Wine Steward/Sommelier 7

References

*The racial-ethnic minorities count is calculated by taking the total number of students and subtracting white students, international students, and students whose race/ethnicity was unknown. This number is then divided by the total number of students at the school to obtain the racial-ethnic minorities percentage.

More about our data sources and methodologies.

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