Culinary Arts Schools in St. Petersburg, FL with Degree Overviews
The St. Petersburg, FL, area has roughly four schools that offer culinary arts programs. Learn about the programs, admission info and program requirements for three of these schools to make an informed education decision.
Comparison of Culinary Arts School Options in St. Petersburg, FL
Although many chefs acquire their skills through on-the-job training, formal culinary arts programs can be found at community colleges, technical institutes and 4-year schools. Coursework typically includes topics in commercial cooking, menu planning, inventory management and purchasing. Additionally, because Florida law requires certain types of food service establishments to have a certified food manager on staff, some programs offer an exam preparation course in food safety and sanitation. The St. Petersburg, FL, area has one community college and two technical institutes that offer programs in the culinary arts.
Out of the 28 schools in Florida's community college system, Hillsborough Community College in Tampa ranks ninth in size, and the college offers academic, technical and adult vocational programs. The Commission of the Council on Occupational Education (COE) and the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools (SACS) accredit the Manatee Technical Institute in Bradenton. This institute offers 1- and 2-year academic and training programs, as well as apprenticeships and short courses. The COE accredits the Pinellas Technical Education Center, as does the SACS's Council on Accreditation and School Improvement. The school has campuses in both St. Petersburg and Clearwater and offers career and technical training in more than 40 different fields.
|Hillsborough Community College||Manatee Technical Institute||Pinellas Technical Education Center - St. Petersburg|
|Culinary Arts Programs Offered|| Associate of Science/Associate of Applied Science in Culinary Management,|
Associate of Science /Associate of Applied Science in Restaurant Management
| Baking and Pastry Arts Career Preparation Program,|
Culinary Arts/Commercial Foods Career Preparation Program
|Commercial Foods and Culinary Arts Program|
|Related Programs Offered|| Culinary Arts Certificate, |
Event Planning Management Certificate,
Food and Beverage Management Certificate,
Food and Beverage Operations Certificate,
Associate of Science in Hospitality and Tourism Management
|Academy of Hospitality, Travel and Tourism||N/A|
|School Type||2-year; public||2-year; public||2-year; public|
|Total Enrollment (2011)||28,329*||1,714*||1,404*|
|Campus Setting||Large city||Large suburb||Midsized city|
|Tuition and Fees||$2,423 for in-state students; $8,851 for out-of-state students (2011-2012)*||$3,456 (2011-2012)*||$5,725 for the total cost of program, including tools, supplies and books (no date)**|
|% of First-Year, Full-Time Students Receiving Any Form of Aid (2010-2011)||80%*||55%*||72%*|
|Acceptance Rate (2011)||N/A - open admissions*||N/A - open admissions*||N/A - open admissions*|
|Retention Rate (2010-2011)||62% for full-time students; 50% for part-time students*||77% for full-time students; 60% for part-time students*||90% for full-time students*|
|Graduation Rate (students who enrolled in 2008)||29%*||70%*||67%*|
|Relevant Facilities and Resources||Annual spring job fair||Café 911 and Café Megabyte||Career Center|
|Noteworthy|| Culinary management degree and culinary arts certificate programs are accredited by the American Culinary Federation; |
100% placement rate for culinary management and restaurant management associate's degree program students in 2009-2010;
articulation agreement with the University of Houston
| The culinary arts and commercial foods program is accredited by the American Culinary Federation;|
high school students receive free tuition
|In 2012, the Annual Florida Legislative Breakfast was prepared by Pinellas students|
|Distance from Downtown (Driving Time)||20.2 mi. (30 min.)||31.1 mi. (40 min.)||5.3 mi. (8 min.)|
Source: *NCES College Navigator, ** Pinellas Technical Education Centers.
Degree Programs at Hillsborough Community College
The Hospitality and Culinary Arts Department offers degree programs in culinary management, dietetics and restaurant management. Certificate programs are also available in food and beverage management, food and beverage operations, culinary arts and event planning. Through an articulation agreement with the University of Houston's Conrad N. Hilton College of Hotel and Restaurant Management, students who earn an Associate of Science degree in culinary or restaurant management can transfer their credits to the Bachelor of Science program in hotel and restaurant management.
Associate of Science or Associate of Applied Science in Culinary Management
This 64-credit program emphasizes the financial, organizational and technical aspects of the industry and is designed to help students acquire the supervisory skills they need to work in commercial or institutional establishments. The curriculum includes 15 credit hours in general education, as well as courses in computer technology and speech. Major requirements are based upon a standard culinary arts curriculum and cover topics in food preparation and storage, cost control, menu planning and nutrition. Related coursework also gives future restaurant professionals a chance to study dining room service, hospitality and management.
A specialty course in baking provides students with a hands-on, industry-based approach to recipes, measures and weights. Through the course in garde manger, they can also learn how to prepare a variety of cold foods, including charcuterie (meats), garnishes, gelatins, mousses and pates. The curriculum also includes six food practicums, which are a combination of classroom and field experiences.
Along with the associate's, Hillsborough offers a 35-credit certificate program in culinary management, which provides largely the same curriculum as the degree program, excluding the general education courses and food practicums.
Associate of Science or Associate of Applied Science in Restaurant Management
This program offers similar content to the culinary management program and also requires 64 credits to complete. Its purpose is to provide students with the direct training they need to obtain administrative positions in a variety of establishments, including hotels and motels, catering, fast food services, bars or restaurants. The degree requirements do not include food practicums or a course in nutrition, but students have to take courses in event planning, hospitality law and hospitality merchandising.
Programs at the Manatee Technical Institute
The Manatee Institute provides both adults and high school students who are at least 16 years old with career-oriented training, and most full-time programs take six to 18 months to complete. Admission requirements include the Florida Test of Adult Basic Education (TABE) and an interview. According to the school's website, approximately 23% of both baking and culinary arts students complete their training on time, and the placement rate for graduates of these programs was 69%.
Baking and Pastry Arts Career Preparation Program
This program requires 600 hours of training and is designed to prepare students for positions as entry-level bakers, bakery supervisors and pastry chefs. Hands-on training is offered in the safe and efficient preparation of breads, cookies and pastries, and students also learn how to make chocolates, custards and decorated cakes. In addition to competency in the kitchen, the program emphasizes communication, leadership and professionalism in the workplace environment.
Culinary Arts and Commercial Foods Career Preparation Program
This program requires 1,200 hours of training and includes a half-day schedule for high school students, after which they can transfer into the adult program. This is a hands-on course of study that emphasizes cooking terms, equipment and methods used in a commercial kitchen, and students can learn to prepare a variety of baked goods, meat products, salads, soups and vegetables. Graduates usually leave with the skills they need to enter the restaurant business as line or prep cooks and to progress within the industry.
Program at Pinellas Technical Education Center - St. Petersburg
The admissions requirements at Pinellas are similar to those at the Manatee Technical Institute, though students who hold an associate's degree from an accredited college do not have to take the TABE test. Applicants must also be at least 16 years old, and those who are currently attending high school are not eligible to apply. The culinary arts program is offered at both the St. Petersburg and Clearwater campuses; however, according to the American Culinary Federation's website, the association only accredits the program in Clearwater.
Commercial Foods and Culinary Arts Program
This 4-part, 13-month program includes a 300-hour introductory course in food preparation that provides students with the training they need to earn their ServSafe certification from the Florida Restaurant and Lodging Association. The remaining three units each require 300 hours of classroom training and include topics associated with restaurant cooking and the culinary responsibilities of chefs and head cooks. Through the final course in food service management, aspiring culinary professionals have the opportunity to study advanced baking and cooking techniques and prepare ethnic and international dishes.
Pinellas has an articulation agreement with St. Petersburg College that allows students to transfer credits to relevant certificate and associate's degree programs.
Other School Options
In addition to the college and institutes listed above, DG Erwin Technical Center in Tampa offers a 14-month, full-time commercial foods and culinary arts program.
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