If you want to experience life in a variety of settings, Washington is the state for you. With huge metropolitan areas, deep wooded areas, and coastal regions, this state appeals to almost everyone in some way. Many of Washington’s 6.9 million residents live in or close to some of the state’s biggest cities of Seattle, Tacoma, and Spokane. These cities are also home to some of Washington’s most popular restaurants, including Zaytinya, Fiola, and Komi.
The cost of living in Washington is about 17% higher than the national average. However, the cost of living may be lower in rural or suburban areas of the state.
In Washington, there are 21 culinary schools you can attend. The majority of them are located near the west coast. Education tends to be very affordable in Washington, as demonstrated by its average tuition cost of $6,039. There are many scholarship opportunities throughout the state, leading to an average scholarship award of $1,738.
You can expect to learn culinary skills in two ways during school. Book knowledge and written exams are an important part of your education. You can learn about different techniques, the history of cooking, and important kitchen terminology that you’ll hear in the kitchen. Written exams are the least common assessment method in culinary school.
Culinary Schools in Washington
Hands-on knowledge makes up the largest chunk of your time in culinary school. Instead of spending most of your time in a traditional school, most of your time may be spent in a student kitchen. You can practice new techniques, perfect techniques you already know, and get a feel for what it is like to work in a kitchen. Since this makes up most of your program, it makes sense that most of your examinations are practical exams that test your ability to work effectively in a kitchen.
Depending on which school you attend, you may be able to take elective courses to boost your education. Some options include courses in specific cuisines, business courses, and restaurant management courses.
As a new culinary graduate, there are many different places you can seek employment. Most chefs work in restaurants, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. However, the Bureau also indicates that chefs work in private homes, hotels, and convention centers.
If you want to become a self-employed chef, you’re in good company. The Bureau of Labor Statistics reports that 13% of chefs are self-employed. You can take advantage of this opportunity by opening a restaurant, starting a catering company, or working as a private chef.
Some of the largest culinary employers in Washington are Old Spaghetti Factory, Panda Restaurant Group, and Gecko Hospitality.
The state of Washington does not require you to be licensed or certified to work as a chef. However, some chefs find it beneficial to pursue optional certification choices to make it easier to find a job. The American Culinary Federation offers a variety of certification levels to chefs.
In general, Washington culinary salaries are very close to national averages. Your individual salary may be influenced by how much experience you have, how much seniority you earn, and what type of restaurant you work in.
Although the job outlook for cooks is strong across the country, it is even better in Washington. The demand for chefs is expected to increase by 15% between 2010 and 2020, significantly more than the national average (O*Net, 2010). In the same time frame, job openings for cooks are expected to grow by 14% (O*Net, 2010).