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How to Finance Your Culinary Education

School Grants and Loans

Grants are gifts of money made to help students pay for their culinary arts training. You'll have to qualify, usually by presenting evidence of need, such as proof of family income and assets. If you get a grant, you won't be expected to pay it back. A loan, on the other hand, is an advance of money that you will have to pay back once you graduate.

Culinary Scholarships

Scholarships, like grants, are gifts of money that you won't have to repay. Whereas grants are based on need, scholarships are based on talent. People will give you a scholarship to go to culinary school because they believe you'll be an asset to the profession when you finally get your culinary job. You usually have to compete to get a scholarship, but the recognition is often as important as the money.

Culinary Arts and Creativity

Flex that imagination. You're getting culinary arts training, aren't you? Why not profit from your weekends and holidays at home by selling cooking lessons to family and friends? After all, the best way to learn is to teach. You could also sell certificates for gourmet meals or catering to your inner circle. These money-makers pay in experience that you can mention when interviewing for culinary jobs.

Check out the U.S. Department of Education website, and talk to the financial aid advisors at your culinary school to find out what financial resources are available.

References:

Department of Education
Peterson's Culinary Schools
Peterson's Culinary Schools. Thompson Learning, Inc., 2005.