Types of Degrees Culinary Arts Majors Are Getting
The following table lists how many culinary arts graduations there were in 2018-2019 for each degree level.
|Education Level||Number of Grads|
What Culinary Arts Majors Need to Know
In an O*NET survey, culinary arts majors were asked to rate what knowledge areas, skills, and abilities were important in their occupations. These answers were weighted on a scale of 1 to 5 with 5 being the most important.
Knowledge Areas for Culinary Arts Majors
This major prepares you for careers in which these knowledge areas are important:
- Customer and Personal Service - Knowledge of principles and processes for providing customer and personal services. This includes customer needs assessment, meeting quality standards for services, and evaluation of customer satisfaction.
- Food Production - Knowledge of techniques and equipment for planting, growing, and harvesting food products (both plant and animal) for consumption, including storage/handling techniques.
- English Language - Knowledge of the structure and content of the English language including the meaning and spelling of words, rules of composition, and grammar.
- Production and Processing - Knowledge of raw materials, production processes, quality control, costs, and other techniques for maximizing the effective manufacture and distribution of goods.
- Administration and Management - Knowledge of business and management principles involved in strategic planning, resource allocation, human resources modeling, leadership technique, production methods, and coordination of people and resources.
Skills for Culinary Arts Majors
When studying culinary arts, you’ll learn many skills that will help you be successful in a wide range of jobs - even those that do not require a degree in the field. The following is a list of some of the most common skills needed for careers associated with this major:
- Active Listening - Giving full attention to what other people are saying, taking time to understand the points being made, asking questions as appropriate, and not interrupting at inappropriate times.
- Speaking - Talking to others to convey information effectively.
- Monitoring - Monitoring/Assessing performance of yourself, other individuals, or organizations to make improvements or take corrective action.
- Critical Thinking - Using logic and reasoning to identify the strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions, conclusions or approaches to problems.
- Coordination - Adjusting actions in relation to others’ actions.
Abilities for Culinary Arts Majors
Culinary Arts majors often go into careers where the following abilities are vital:
- Oral Comprehension - The ability to listen to and understand information and ideas presented through spoken words and sentences.
- Oral Expression - The ability to communicate information and ideas in speaking so others will understand.
- Problem Sensitivity - The ability to tell when something is wrong or is likely to go wrong. It does not involve solving the problem, only recognizing there is a problem.
- Near Vision - The ability to see details at close range (within a few feet of the observer).
- Deductive Reasoning - The ability to apply general rules to specific problems to produce answers that make sense.
What Can You Do With a Culinary Arts Major?
People with a culinary arts degree often go into the following careers:
|Job Title||Job Growth Rate||Median Salary|
|Butchers and Meat Cutters||5.7%||$31,580|
|Chefs and Head Cooks||9.6%||$48,460|
|Cooks, Institution and Cafeteria||7.7%||$26,860|
|Cooks, Private Household||5.2%||$37,590|
|First-Line Supervisors of Food Preparation and Serving Workers||9.3%||$32,450|
|Food Scientists and Technologists||5.9%||$65,300|
|Food Service Managers||9.0%||$54,240|
|Slaughterers and Meat Packers||0.6%||$28,260|
Who Is Getting a Bachelor’s Degree in Culinary Arts?
At the countrywide level, the racial-ethnic distribution of culinary arts majors is as follows:
|Race/Ethnicity||Number of Grads|
|Black or African American||73|
|Hispanic or Latino||129|
Students from other countries are interested in Culinary Arts, too. About 5.7% of those with this major are international students. The most popular countries for students from outside the country are:
- South Korea
How Much Do Culinary Arts Majors Make?
Bachelor’s Degree Starting Salary
According to 2017-2018 data from the U.S. Department of Education, students who graduated with a bachelor’s degree in culinary arts have a median salary of $28,700 during the early years of their career. During this timeframe, most salaries fell between $27,500 (25th percentile) and $29,100 (75th percentile).
Note that some of these people may have jobs that are not directly related to a culinary arts degree.
Salaries According to BLS
Culinary Arts majors often go into careers where salaries can range from $28,450 to $52,160 (25th to 75th percentile). This range includes all degree levels, so you may expect those with a more advanced degree to make more while those with less advanced degrees will typically make less.
To put that into context, according to BLS data from the first quarter of 2020, the typical high school graduate makes between $30,000 and $57,900 a year (25th through 75th percentile). The average person with a bachelor’s degree (any field) makes between $45,600 and $99,000. Advanced degree holders make the most with salaries between $55,600 and $125,400.
Amount of Education Required for Careers Related to Culinary Arts
Some degrees associated with culinary arts may require an advanced degree, while others may not even require a bachelor’s in the field. In general, the more advanced your degree the more career options will open up to you. However, there is significant time and money that needs to be invested into your education so weigh the pros and cons.
Find out what the typical degree level is for culinary arts careers below.
|Education Level||Percentage of Workers|
|Less than a High School Diploma||16.1%|
|High School Diploma - or the equivalent (for example, GED)||43.9%|
|Post-Secondary Certificate - awarded for training completed after high school (for example, in agriculture or natural resources, computer services, personal or culinary services, engineering technologies, healthcare, construction trades, mechanic and repair technologies, or precision production)||11.4%|
|Some College Courses||9.3%|
|Associate’s Degree (or other 2-year degree)||7.2%|
|Post-Baccalaureate Certificate - awarded for completion of an organized program of study; designed for people who have completed a Baccalaureate degree but do not meet the requirements of academic degrees carrying the title of Master.||0.6%|
|Post-Master’s Certificate - awarded for completion of an organized program of study; designed for people who have completed a Master’s degree but do not meet the requirements of academic degrees at the doctoral level.||0.1%|
|First Professional Degree - awarded for completion of a program that: requires at least 2 years of college work before entrance into the program, includes a total of at least 6 academic years of work to complete, and provides all remaining academic requirements to begin practice in a profession.||0.3%|
Online Culinary Arts Programs
In the 2018-2019 academic year, 658 schools offered some type of culinary arts program. The following table lists the number of programs by degree level, along with how many schools offered online courses in the field.
|Degree Level||Colleges Offering Programs||Colleges Offering Online Classes|
|Certificate (Less Than 1 Year)||517||5|
|Certificate (1-2 years)||584||5|
|Certificate (2-4 Years)||36||0|
|Doctor’s Degree (Research)||0||0|
|Doctor’s Degree (Professional Practice)||0||0|
|Doctor’s Degree (Other)||0||0|
Is a Degree in Culinary Arts Worth It?
The median salary for a culinary arts grad is $33,210 per year. This is based on the weighted average of the most common careers associated with the major.
Top Ranking Lists for Culinary Arts
Explore Major by State
District of Columbia
Majors Related to Culinary Arts
You may also be interested in one of the following majors related to culinary arts.
|Major||Number of Grads|
|Funeral & Mortuary Science||1,965|
|Other Personal & Culinary Services||320|
*The racial-ethnic minorities count is calculated by taking the total number of students and subtracting white students, international students, and students whose race/ethnicity was unknown. This number is then divided by the total number of students at the school to obtain the racial-ethnic minorities percentage.
- College Factual
- College Scorecard
- National Center for Education Statistics
- O*NET Online
- U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics
- Usual Weekly Earnings of Wage and Salary Workers First Quarter 2020
- Image Credit: By U.S. Army Europe Images under License
More about our data sources and methodologies.
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