Culinary Arts Programs Exploding at Community Colleges

Culinary arts have become a popular degree program at community colleges across the country. What is fueling this sudden surge of foodies? Some believe it is the growing number of cooking programs on television that tend to glamorize what was once known as a relatively mundane, low-paying industry. TV has also increased interest in food enjoyment, which has further fueled the need for talented chefs – providing more opportunities for those who pursue a two-year degree in culinary arts. As the cycle continues, more college students are taking a serious look at the potential for a culinary arts degree, as well as the best schools to pursue an education in all things culinary.
 
Los Angeles Colleges See “Explosion” of Enrollment
 
The culinary arts programs at community colleges in Los Angeles have never been healthier. According to the Daily Breeze, enrollment in some programs has more than doubled within a few years. Some schools are reporting an overflow of students in classes and an even longer wait list for students who were unable to get into the classes of their choice.
 
For example, the culinary arts program at Los Angeles Mission College has more than doubled the student population in just three years – from 250 students to 600 currently. The school has recently expanded the space for their program, adding an extensive new facility that boasts seven full kitchens equipped with some of the latest cooking technology. The $40 facility seemed to go up almost overnight, with plans...
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The Virginia Tech tragedy in 2007 was a glaring indication that community colleges are not immune from the deadly violence that has impacted school campuses across the country. That single incident defined the risks students undertake when they head to classes every day. While schools of all kinds are taking another look at how to keep students safer, unique challenges face community colleges in this area. At the same time, a recent string of community college attacks has highlighted the need for a higher level of security, despite potential obstacles facing these schools.
 
Attacks at Wyoming School Precede String of Incidents
 
The first in a recent string of community college attacks took place at a Wyoming school last November. Reuters reports that the son of a professor at Casper College shot his father in the head with a crossbow and arrow in front of a classroom full of students. Students were able to safely exit the classroom as the father and son engaged in a struggle that left both of them dead. Later, authorities found a third victim, another college professor who had been living with the first victim, slain in her home.
 
“I can’t even imagine what the students in that room had gone through,” Chris Walsh, chief of police in Casper, told Reuters.
 
Texas Community College Sees Two Incidents in Three Months
 
Lone Star Community College in Texas has seen not one, but two incidents that left staff and students with injuries. The first was a shooting...
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Ready to kick your dead end job in favor of more lucrative prospects? A community college degree might be just the ticket. Many of the jobs in the U.S. that were hot at the end of the 20th century are barely simmering today. Now might be the perfect time to make a career change with the help of the two-year school in your area. Check out these jobs gaining ground and alternatives that might put you back on a positive career track once again.
 
Desktop Publisher
This job was a hot one at the end of the last century, as many small business owners turned to pros to turn out their marketing material and newsletters. However, new and improved software has made the job significantly easier, which makes the job of the desktop publisher less cost-effective today. Some companies are also outsourcing this type of work to save a buck. According to Yahoo Finance, this field is expected to decline by more than 14 percent over the next decade, as businesses turn to other sources for their publishing needs.
 
Instead of stagnating in the fading world of desktop publishing, Yahoo Finance suggests an alternative career in drafting. Drafting takes you from published designs to manufacturing designs, creating technical drawings and plans for everything from the cardboard holder for your coffee cup to full-size building structures. Many community colleges across the country offer two-year degree programs to help you launch a new drafting career. Average annual pay for drafters is...
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If you are looking for a job with serious career potential for the 21st century, a community college might be just the place to start. Two-year schools offer a wealth of degree options for in-demand industries for the local workforce and beyond. Check out these 10 community college degrees with excellent future potential.
 
Plumber
Plumbing may not be the first thing you think of when you are considering lucrative careers for the 21st century, but guess what? This industry is predicted to grow by more than 25 percent over the next 10 years, according to Yahoo Finance. The average annual salary can go up to more than $67,000 as well. While some enter the plumbing industry through an apprenticeship or on-the-job experience, an associate degree from a local community college could sweeten the pot on the employment front.
 
Veterinary Technician
If you love animals, a career as a veterinary technician might be the perfect choice. These professionals work alongside veterinarians, offering support with regular checkups, performing diagnostic examinations and assisting during surgery. A two-year degree from the right community college can launch your career in this growing field. According to Money Crashers, the projected growth for veterinary technicians over the next 10 years is around 35 percent, with an average annual salary of $30,000.
 
Diagnostic Medical Sonographer
These healthcare professionals utilize ultrasound equipment to screen and diagnose a number of conditions. As this technology has grown and evolved to encompass a large number of diagnostic purposes, the need for medical sonographers has...
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Community colleges have traditionally been considered the go-to place for two-year vocational degrees or general college coursework for students that have plans to transfer to a four-year college or university. However, these institutions of higher education are increasing their program offerings to include a smattering of four-year degree options as well. Although not without their share of opposition, the four-year degree is slowly but surely becoming more common at the community college level. Check out these states and schools delving into the frontier of the four-year degree program.
 
Chattanooga State Considers Addition of Five Four-Year Programs
 
A community college in Tennessee is looking at adding five new programs to their current catalog selections. The Chattanoogan reports that Chattanooga State Community College is considering the addition of four-year degree programs in a variety of high-tech fields. The president of the college, Dr. Jim Cantanzaro, applied for approval of the programs last summer, and is still waiting for a response from Tennessee Board of Regents.
 
The community college would like to add four-year degree programs in chemical process engineering, radiological sciences, nuclear engineering, technology management, and mechatronics engineering. The programs were specifically chosen based on the local employment needs of the current workforce. Dr. Cantanzaro made it clear the goal of the program addition was to fulfill those professional needs and not to transform Chattanooga State in a full-fledged four-year school.
 
Dr. Cantanzaro also explained that 60 percent of the material in the new degree programs would be “applied,” meaning the...
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