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You may not need any academic qualifications to start work as a trainee (commis) chef, although some employers will prefer you to have a good general standard of education, possibly including hospitality or catering qualifications.
You could prepare for working in this industry by taking a part-time or full-time college training course to gain some of the skills and knowledge needed in the job. Courses combine classroom study with practical experience. They include:
- Level 1 Diploma in Introduction to Professional Cookery
- Level 2 Certificate in Hospitality and Catering Principles (Professional Cookery – Food Preparation and Cooking)
- Level 2 Certificate in Professional Patisserie and Confectionery
- Level 2 Diploma in Professional Cookery.
Check with colleges for details of course entry requirements.
A common way into this work is to do an Apprenticeship. This would combine learning on the job with study at a college or training center. It normally takes two to four years to become fully qualified this way.
The range of Apprenticeships available in your area will depend on the local jobs market and the types of skills employers need from their workers. To find out more, visit the Apprenticeships website.