The new year is around the corner, and with it comes a fresh crop of culinary students, ready to start the school year. Are you one of those excited culinary students to be? You’re probably wondering how you can best prepare yourself to begin studies. Here are some tips and advice you can use to help get yourself ready for culinary school.
The best way to prepare yourself for your culinary arts education is to be a good student and have passion for the subject matter. Just as no one can teach a person who believes they already know everything, no instructor can make someone excited about a topic they have absolutely no interest in. If you are a good learner, able to take direction, and improve upon your faults, you’re halfway there. If you are passionate about food and delivering amazing dishes to everyone, you have a good foundation to build on for your culinary arts education.
You might think you’re walking into culinary school with nothing, but that couldn’t be further from the truth. Great cooks need basic math skills, business skills, organizational skills and more to be successful in the kitchen. Even your experiences cooking for friends and family at home can carry over to your culinary education.
Before your first day of class, be sure to read any and all materials provided for you. Make note of anything you need to bring with you or wear the first day of school. If there is an orientation available, be sure to attend it. Orientations vary, but they generally include school rules, expectations, a tour of the building, and a chance to get to know some chef instructors and school staff before you step into class.
You might wonder if you should look at some YouTube videos or browse the internet for background information before your first class. But while this can help expose you to some information you will be covering during your education, not all sources on the internet are accurate and you could start off your cooking career with some bad habits or misinformation already in place. If you do browse the internet for educational resources, be sure to check that they are accurate and high-quality.
Being a good student in the kitchen, is just like being a good student in the classroom, only more important. In the classroom there are relatively few dangers. In the kitchen there are hot ovens, stoves, appliances, and food items as well as sharp knives and instruments. It’s imperative, for your safety and the safety of others, that you listen to instructors and follow all kitchen safety protocol.
Additionally, it’s important to deal with feedback well and constantly be working toward improvement. Only you can make you a better chef. Taking comments on board and improving your recipes and techniques will only make you a stronger student.
Best of luck as you set out on your new journey!