Become a Top Chef Owner or Restaurant Manager

In the culinary industry management level professionals make the real and final decisions regarding business, hiring and firing personnel and even design and marketing. If your career plans include your love for cooking AND your desire to make management level decisions, then find out why you may be a good fit for a major in culinary arts management.

Closely Related Majors

While you’re searching for just the right culinary arts management major keep in mind that many schools may call this curriculum something slightly different:

  • food service management
  • restaurant management
  • culinary management
  • restaurant and beverage management
  • entrepreneurship and restaurant management
  • restaurant and catering management

Qualifications for Culinary Management Majors

What type of degree will you earn with a culinary management study track?

Common culinary arts majors include cooking and pastry arts—both of these offered as trade level programs (certificates and diplomas) or as undergraduate/liberal arts majors/degrees (Associates and Bachelors level degrees). Anytime “management” curriculum is added to the major you should expect to be investing your time in an Associates, Bachelors or even a graduate level program with business components.

Each cooking school will have its own prerequisites for entry to a major. The type of educational background you’ll need depends upon the type of degree you’re after. It’s fairly common for culinary schools to stipulate that you complete the basic or general culinary arts or pastry arts coursework first, before enrolling in the management level major.

Types of students that enter a culinary arts management major:

  • Student chefs with certificate or diploma education
  • Professional cooks looking to take their careers to the next level
  • Pastry and bakery chefs
  • Students with ground-level work experience in the food service industry, ie waitstaff, busboys, hosts/hostesses, dishwashers, station cooks. Again, you may be required to complete a basic program in culinary or pastry arts.
  • Career changers with or without a previous college degree.
  • Students with previous management or business management degrees and/or work experience.

Types of Schools that Offer Culinary Arts Management Majors

Culinary Arts Management programs are fairly common curriculums in the food service education sector. You’ll find the offered by many of the following types of schools:

  • Professional culinary arts schools, including the International Culinary Arts Schools at the Art Institutes, the French Culinary Institute and some of the Le Cordon Bleu programs.
  • Four-year liberal arts colleges and universities with Hospitality schools.

Curriculum – What You’ll Study in Restaurant Management

Details of specific curriculums are available from the various schools, but in general these are the type of skills you’ll cover to satisfy the major:

  • Basic culinary and pastry arts skills—kitchen skills, cooking techniques, main international cuisines, hygiene and sanitation.
  • Business courses that may include food service finance, marketing, and communications.
  • Menu development, inventory and cost control and management of human resources. Wine, beer, spirits and beverage management.

Getting a Job with a Culinary Arts Management Major and Degree

The best jobs and career strategies go to motivated and ambitious professionals who are able to hit the ground running right out of school. Best strategy is to ensure the culinary school you apply to provides adequate hands-on training, including opportunities for an externship, internship or apprenticeship with a local or nationally recognized restaurant or food service business.

Types of businesses in which you may work with a Bachelors or Associates degree in Culinary Arts and Restaurant Management:

  • Full-service restaurants
  • Beverage service industry, including wine, beer spirits industry
  • Food and beverage distribution
  • Hotels, resorts and spas
  • Casinos
  • Cruise lines
  • Institutional food service, such as hospitals and schools
  • Corporate food service management jobs
  • Catering and private food service jobs

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