Whether you have been inspired by a famous chef or just love creating in the kitchen, our dynamic culinary program provides you with the professional training needed to succeed in the field. Foodservice careers require long hours and hard work, and this program is built on an apprenticeship model so our students gain hands-on experience that is indicative of real-world challenges. Students will learn firsthand from working in our dining room and deli which is open to the public. At the same time, students take classes related to cooking and creativity along with classes in nutrition, sanitation, safety, and business operations. The program is rigorous and challenging but also professionally rewarding. Our students have opportunities to showcase their skills in the annual SkillsUSA Competition, both regionally and nationally. Many have earned gold, silver, and bronze medals. Our program is fully accredited by the American Culinary Federation (ACF) and offers several certificate options and a two-year associate degree. Once you have your two-year degree, you can pursue additional education to become an ACF-certified chef.
The Culinary and Baking & Pastry Arts Programs at CWI aspire to be recognized for providing a fast paced environment where students acquire knowledge, self-confidence & exercise creativity while preparing for a position in the rapidly changing and diverse culinary, baking and pastry professions. Our students are exposed to the business aspects of culinary arts, baking & pastry along with practical hands on training. We strive to use the finest local and sustainable ingredients in partnership with local producers, farmers & ranchers.
Why This Program
College of Western Idaho’s Culinary Arts program is designed to provide intensive training for aspiring chefs. The goal of the program is to provide hands-on skills and food science understanding that are required for a career in a fine-dining establishment. The program is designed to focus upon both production and the individualized skills necessary to gain entry-level employment in restaurants, and other catering or foodservice Industry positions. The program provides students with access to the area chefs, winemakers and producers through community involvement.
What You Will Learn to Do
- You will receive personal instruction and hands-on training from experienced professional instructors in a professional atmosphere
- You will have a working knowledge and understanding of safe sanitation practices that meet state and federal requirements for all food handlers
- Lay the foundation for career goals from the minute you come in contact with our school, while nurturing positive relationships with industry mentors
- Use the best ingredients and instruction available to learn the art, science, technique, and methods needed to excel in the industry
- Pride in your art
- Respect for your profession, and a commitment to success
The purpose of SkillsUSA is to unite in a common bond without regard to race, sex, religion, creed, or national origin. Students enrolled in class with vocational trade, industrial, technical, and health occupations objectives. We also assist... more
We Present opportunities to our students to become a part of their professional community by promoting and supporting participation in activities like CWI Culinary Club, ACF Idaho Chefs’ de Cuisine, Idaho Potato Challenge, The Chefs’ Affaire, Culinary Walkabout, Skills USA, FCCLA & Community service projects.
CWI Culinary Internships and Externships provide the opportunity to work shoulder to shoulder with established professionals in the Industry.
Requirements and Costs
Degrees and Certificates
Associate of Applied Science Degree in Culinary Arts
Advanced Technical Certificate in Culinary Arts
Technical Certificate in Culinary Arts
Post-Secondary Technical Certificate in Culinary Arts
Skills, Traits, and Prep Classes
- Can manage and cook in a foodservice setting
- Have both theory training and hands-on experience
- Have basic business skills
- Understand and utilize the latest technologies
- Display analytical skills
- Have a knowledge of and passion for food
- Are flexible and dependable
- Display ethical and enthusiastic behavior
- Are skilled at oral and written communication
- Utilize excellent interpersonal and team skills
- Can perform critical thinking and complex problem-solving
- Understand how to manage profitability and significantly enhance the bottom line
- Anticipate the wants and needs of increasingly sophisticated customers and respond with the latest ideas
- Have a sense of timing, speed, stamina, and dexterity
- Have a good work ethic and are able to perform under pressure
- Are dedicated to continuous learning
Navigating your way through college can be confusing, especially if you try to go it alone. CWI One Stop Student Services offers advising assistance, available each semester, to help in deciding which courses you need to take to complete your educational goals. Visit Advising for more information or contact One Stop Student Services to schedule an appointment.
Financial Aid Available
Did you know that as a student in this program you may be eligible for financial aid? Through grants, scholarships, and loans, more than 60 percent of first-time, full-time CWI students receive some form of financial assistance. To learn more about financial aid options and whether you may be eligible, visit Financial Aid.
Tuition and Fees
Tuition for a full-time CWI student averages half the cost of a state university and a third of the cost of a private college. Tuition and fees vary based on program and residence. Visit Tuition and Fees for more information.
You may begin your exciting hospitality career in a wide variety of businesses, virtually anywhere around the world. Your skills will be needed by fine-dining establishments, resorts, catering companies, hotels, airlines, bakeries, home meal replacement businesses, and commercial foodservice facilities. Those who are considering enrollment are advised to give serious consideration to the long hours of difficult work required, both at college and in your subsequent employment within the foodservice industry.