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College of Hospitality, Retail and Sport Management


Culinary Institute Certification Program Frequently Asked Questions

To help you decide if this program is right for you, here are some questions our students have asked before enrolling.

Please feel free to contact the director to have specific questions not listed here addressed.

When does a rotation begin?

A rotation begins when there are enough people to start a class. If you are interested in the next rotation, email George Hendry at ghendry@mailbox.sc.edu. You will put you on a list and called when we are ready to announce the start of a new rotation. It will also be advertised on the website prior to start of the rotation and you will be able to register at that time.

Do I pay for the entire program at once?

No, payment for each of the 11 courses is due before beginning that course in the program. All additional fees such as textbook and uniform are required by the start of the third course which is Stocks, Sauces and Soups.

When are the classes held?

Classes are one of the following rotations: Monday and Wednesday or Tuesday and Thursday. All classes start at 6:00 p.m. and end by 10:00 p.m.

What if I am absent or have to take a leave of absence?

Since there are only eight classes to each course, missing class is not encouraged. However, if you miss a class within a course, you can work with the chef to make it up. If you need to take more than one class off, you will be given an incomplete. Depending on room availability, you would be allowed to take that course on the next rotation.

Do you accept the GI Bill?

At this time, we do not. We are working on approval and will change our status when we are able to accept the Bill. However, due to the amount of hours in the program, the program does not qualify for full tuition reimbursement through the GI Bill.

Do I need to take the SAT or ACT?

No, since this is not a degree with credit hours, you do not need those test scores to enroll.

How is the $300 registration fee applied to the program?

The $300 is subtracted from the final course in the program, Advanced Baking. You only pay $250 for that class. This is an incentive for you to complete the program.

Does this program count for any credit hours toward a degree?

No, this is a certification program which is different from a degree program.

If I have taken a similar culinary program prior to entering this one, do I have to go through all of the courses to receive a certificate?

No, this will be a case-by-case review. If our class matches a previous class you have taken, you can “test out." If you have a current up-to-date ServSafe Certification, you will not have to take that class.

I want to be a pastry chef. Does this program include pastry arts?

No, as a culinary program, we teach the fundamentals of baking and some advance baking skills. It would not qualify for a Pastry Arts course.

At the end of this program, am I considered a “chef?"

Sorry, no. This is a program in which you are able to develop your skills and knowledge in order to enter the foodservice industry for an entry-level position. A chef is a professional and considered an expert in the field due to his or her amassed knowledge, skill and experience. All of this takes years of dedication and a passion for the art to cultivate.