7 Tips To Consider When Choosing A Culinary School!

Lady Chef

Written by Mommy Tina

Are you thinking of enrolling in a Culinary school? Below are suggestions and tips you should know so you can choose the school that fits your circumstances. Most of these suggestions are money suggestions, and surely as you go read along you will know why it is essential that you consider them.

Tip #1 Find Out the Total Cost of the Whole Program or Course

How much is the TOTAL COST of the whole program or course?  To find out, it is best to visit the school and talk to the person in charge. Some culinary schools have websites and in them you can find information on the courses offered and corresponding fees. However, there is a chance that the websites are not updated (which means that the information is not current). Thus it is still best to personally visit the school and personally talk to the Finance Officer. You can also call if they have a land line. Ask for a copy of their Schedule of Fees and examine closely. If there’s something there that you don’t understand, ask.

When you get home, do some pencil pushing and use your calculator. Oftentimes you will get a better picture when the numbers are staring back at you!

Tip # 2 Find Out How Much Is the Cost of the Ingredients Per Session

If you don’t have money concerns or if money is not really a problem for you, then you can just ignore this tip. For the majority though, I’m sure this will help a lot so you’ll be safe with your budget. Find out how much is the cost of the ingredients per session. This is very important because if you don’t ask, you might be in for a big surprise later on. Different Culinary schools have different programs and policies. For example, there are culinary schools where the costs of the ingredients are included already in the total cost of the program/course.  This means that all the ingredients will be provided for by the school. Then there are culinary schools where the students have to purchase the ingredients (do the marketing) before every cooking session (the day before or before the class starts)  and pay for these ingredients from their own pockets. Remember that the cost of the ingredients (meat, fish, poultry, eggs, sugar, etc) will change as the prices of the commodities in the market changes. So for practical reasons, always be ready to set aside more money, not less, for the ingredients.

Asian Cuisine

Tip #3 Find Out the Cost of the Books, Kitchen Kits, Uniforms, and Chef’s Shoes

These are necessary things for a culinary school student, and because these things have to be bought, consider also how much they cost.

Know that there are schools who offer free uniforms to their students; some schools offer free textbooks; and some schools offer free kitchen kits. There are also culinary schools who have included these costs in the total school fees  while there are schools which allow their students to purchase these items only when they are to be used already.

Some culinary schools require their students to wear the high quality (expensive) Chef’s shoes for safety reasons. This is understandable because in the kitchen, oil spills on the floor can cause accidents and the best way to avoid that is by wearing slip-resistant shoes. The good news is, there are also culinary schools who are more lenient on the kind of shoes their students can use or wear.

Tip #4 Know the Other Costs You’ll Have to Pay For

There are also other costs that are substantial which you need to be aware of. For example, culinary students are required to hold at least one activity where they will showcase their learned skills. In this activity they will invite people, family and friends, to sample the food they will prepare. This activity can be in the form of a buffet dinner or a fine dining activity. The number of guests will depend on how many the students are and the number of guests each student is allowed to invite, plus other guests. The cost of the food they will have to shoulder themselves which means that they have to contribute money. How much the contribution will be depends on the students themselves.

As the culinary students finish their classroom/kitchen training, some schools require their students to hold a culminating activity where the students are required to manage an event, mostly a dinner buffet, with paying customers. Why paying customers?  Because the culminating activity is the final test on the things they learned in the culinary school – from food preparation to event management to restaurant simulation. It is a business undertaking because not only will the students  be evaluated based on quality of food served and efficiency in kitchen management and service management, they will also be evaluated based on profit – if the money they invested will be returned to them full plus profit! Each student will be required to contribute an amount as capital contribution. How much the contribution will be will depend on the number of guests to be invited, the kind of dishes that will be served, and the number of dishes that will be served. Other costs will include venue rental, decorations, ticket printing, transportation, etc.

Tip #5 Costs on Seminars, Trainings, Conferences, and OJT Costs, If Any

There are other costs that the school may require their students to pay for, like fees for seminars, trainings, conferences, and OJT’s. Ask the school about these costs.


Tip #6 Fees for Missed Exams and Missed Classes

There are culinary schools which require their students to pay a certain amount of money so they can attend special or make-up classes if they miss a session. Find out how much the fee for each of these make-up classes. Why is this important? It is because once they miss a class or a session, they will not be able to finish the course or program, meaning they will not graduate.

Tip #7 Find Out How Much Time You Will be Required to Spend in School  

Is it enough that you just attend the required class hours or will you be required to spend more time in school aside from your regular class hours? This is very important especially if the student is currently employed, has a business, or is a parent with small children.

Here’s hoping you find the best culinary school based on your own circumstance and preference!

In Cagayan de Oro City, there are very good Culinary Schools to choose from.

Visit The Culinary Institute of Cagayan de Oro which is conveniently located just a few blocks away from Centrio Mall. It’s on the 3rd Floor of the Legacy Building at A. Luna Street. Their mobile contact numbers are 0933 585 6454 (Sun)  and 0917 503 9786 (Globe).

 Culinary Institute of Cagayan de Oro


Check out also Monster Kitchen Cagayan De Oro City. They have two branches, one in San Agustine Street and the other one near Ororama Cogon.  For inquiries you can call them at (08822) 71 43 49 or you can also call or text them at 0917 717 2468 and/or 0917 707 4583.


Happy cooking!


Images courtesy of marin and artemisphoto /FreeDigitalPhotos.net


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