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Culinary Schools in Akron

Located in the Great Lakes area some 40 miles south of Lake Erie, Akron is the fifth-largest city in the state of Ohio. Akron is home to an impressive number of high-tech companies, and was named one of the Information Age tech havens by Newsweek magazine. About a century ago, Akron was the capital of rubber, as major tire producers established headquarters here, of which Goodyear remains. Akron has many nicknames, and as one would expect, "Rubber Capital of the World" is one of them.

Culinary Arts

Students will find plenty of fun and games in Akron, including Canal Park, where the Akron RubberDucks play baseball right in the middle of downtown, and the Akron Marathon, which is one of America's top races that attracts some 15,000 runners. Ohio's largest outdoor skating rink and sledding hill are located at Lock 3 in downtown Akron, where the annual Holidayfest is held. For those students at Akron cooking schools who treasure the outdoors, there's also plenty to do, including activities and outdoor fun at Cuyahoga Valley National Park.

Famous Akron food, restaurants and festivals

Now in its 68th year, The Summit County Italian-American Festival is held every July in downtown Akron, and it attracts some 50,000 attendees (really). In terms of food festivals, there's the National Hamburger Festival, and it doesn't really get more American than hamburgers, does it? This foodie-centric event attracts some 20,000 foodies and is held in August every year, also in downtown Akron. It features one of the largest assortments of hamburgers ever assembled in one place, and yes, of course there are competitions that answer one burning question: who makes the best hamburger? Part of the proceeds are donated to Akron Children's Hospital. There's also a 5K race, craft beer tastings, an indie music showcase, and yes, a Hamburger Festival Queen Pageant.

Beyond the big foodie events, there are a number of restaurants in Akron that are ready for your visit any time of the year. Here are a few of our favorite spots that culinary students should try:

  • Ken Stewart's Grille: This high-end eatery has been in the same location for 25 years, and it serves outstanding meat, and seafood in elegant surroundings. Open for lunch and dinner, we suggest the oysters on the half shell, and the sesame-crusted ahi tuna.
  • Diamond Deli: This very laid-back and simple deli has served some of the best sandwiches, such as the classic pastrami or the corned beef, since 1997. Locals crave about the friendly staff, the affordable food, and the Thirsty Dog beer. Closed on Sundays.
  • Vaccaro's Trattoria: With great deals for lunch and dinner, this upscale family-owned trattoria has a strong loyal following, especially when it comes to the Bolognese. They have retail wine nights once or twice a week, which means bargains on wine.

Akron culinary salary and career info

Now, if you are thinking about coming to Ohio to attend one of the Akron culinary schools, you might be curious about how much you can potentially earn. Students who want to make a culinary career in Ohio may find better opportunities in some of the larger metros such as Cleveland or Cincinnati, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. Here is what to expect from the Ohio food and beverage industry, according to BLS data:

Occupation

Total Employment in Ohio (2014)

Average Salary in Ohio (2014)

% Job Growth Nationwide (2012-2022)

Bakers

8,000

$24,640

6.5%

Butchers and Meat Cutters

6,780

$30,330

7.0%

Chefs and Head Cooks

3,500

$43,480

8.6%

Food Service Managers

9,040

$48,700

5.5%

Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2014

Because Akron is a small town, there may be fewer opportunities here. However, the salaries in Akron seem to be about on par or even above the averages of the state as a whole. Here is the most recent BLS data for Akron culinary careers:

Location

Occupations

Total Employed (2014)

Average Salary (2014)

Akron

Bakers

440

$25,110

Butchers and Meat Cutters

330

$32,570

Chefs and Head Cooks

160

$42,170

Food Service Managers

470

$50,810

Earning a culinary degree is a great way to get started on the path to becoming a chef, pastry chef or restaurateur. Get started by looking at the school listings below to find one closest to you.

Sources:

  • A New Brand of Tech Cities, Newsweek.com, April 29, 2001, http://www.newsweek.com/new-brand-tech-cities-150557
  • Akron Summit Visitor's Guide, http://www.glpublishing.com/digitaleditions/2015akronvg/index.html
  • Diamond Deli, http://diamonddeli.us/
  • Ken Stewart's Grille, http://kenstewarts.com/grille/
  • May 2014 State Occupational Employment and Wage Estimates, Washington, 2015, Bureau of Labor Statistics, http://www.bls.gov/oes/current/oes_oh.htm
  • May 2014 Metropolitan and Nonmetropolitan Area Occupational Employment and Wage Estimates, Akron, OH, http://www.bls.gov/oes/current/oes_10420.htm
  • National Hamburger Festival, http://hamburgerfestival.com/
  • Summit County Italian-American Festival, http://it-am.org/summit-county-italian-american-festival/
  • Vaccaro's Trattoria, http://www.vactrat.com/

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