Paying culinary dues

I feel like I’m paying the equivalent of my “culinary dues.” I’m exhausted. I’m working like a dog. I’m overextended between school, building up my writing portfolio and experience, and being a mom and wife. While I thought time away from my family had ended after my externship, I still hardly see them.

I’m not complaining (except for the part about not seeing my family). I’m enjoying every minute of this career change, but also hoping all of these “dues” will soon be done, over with, completed, finished. I’m ready for the light at the end of the tunnel to hit me square in the face and blind me straight into a full time job, with family-friendly hours again.

The last part of the puzzle though, before I can truly feel like I’ve earned a worthy place in this culinary community, is to bite the bullet and do what I’ve been avoiding this entire time: work in a commercial kitchen. I’m not sure for how long, or how far I’d like to take it. It depends on the environment, I suppose. But like my externship, the restaurant will have to be extraordinary, with high standards.

I wonder if any of them offer “mom hours.”

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            5 Program(s) Found
            • Alumni have appeared in reality competition shows such as Top Chef and Project Runway.
            • Has a team of about 4,000 faculty members focused on helping students tap opportunities in a marketplace driven by ideas.
            • Offers programs in design, media arts, fashion, and culinary.
            • Provides program coordinators who work with students to ensure they have the learning materials, assignments, facilities, and faculty to get the most out of the program.
            • Over 50 campus locations nationwide.
            Good for Working Adults
            • Flexible Scheduling
            • Financial Aid
            • Transferable Credits
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            • Hands-on culinary education with focused attention on each student
            • An ACCSC School of Excellence with multiple “Best Vocational Cooking School” awards*
            • 15,000 graduates, including celebrities like Bobby Flay, David Chang, and Christina Tosi*
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            Baker College - Ground , Clinton Township

            Baker College is the largest independent college in Michigan with the most focused approach to education and training available. Our mission is to prepare you for meaningful employment.

            5 Program(s) Found
            • Received the 2015 and 2013 “Cooking School of the Year” Award of Excellence from the International Association of Culinary Professionals (IACP).
            • Accredited by the Accrediting Commission of Career Schools and Colleges (ACCSC).
            • Externship opportunities are available at numerous famous New York City restaurants.
            • Campus is located near downtown Manhattan, within walking distance of many popular attractions such as the Radio City Music Hall.
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            Good for Working Adults
            • Flexible Scheduling
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            • Culinary Arts program includes the 3-week Farm To Table® Experience, where students gain a direct, in-depth look at where food comes from.
            • Numerous scholarship opportunities and financial aid are available to students who qualify.
            • Accreditation from the Accrediting Council for Continuing Education and Training (ACCET), and the Council on Occupational Education (COE).
            • 2 campuses located in Boulder, Colorado and Austin, Texas.
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            Good for Working Adults
            • Flexible Scheduling
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            1 Program(s) Found
            • Students get real-world experience through the required externship at the end of the program.
            • Curriculum includes laboratory sessions, academic preparation and hands-on experience.
            • Program objectives are to provide students with skills needed for cooking wholesome, attractive, food preparations and to assist graduates in obtaining positions in the food service industry.
            • Accredited by the American Culinary Federation (ACF).
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            • Ranked among the Best Colleges in the South in 2015 by U.S. News and World Report.
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            • Its student-faculty ratio is 12:1, and 89.3% of classes have fewer than 20 students.
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