Prep Cook (Certificate)

Program Description

The Prep Cook technical certificate of credit provides skills for entry into the food services preparation area as a prep cook. Topics include: food services history, safety and sanitation, purchasing and food control, nutrition and menu development and design, along with the principles of cooking.

Program Details

  • Major Code: PC51
  • Award Level: Technical Certificate of Credit
  • Location: Griffin Campus
  • Program Entrance Term: Fall, Spring, Summer
  • Minimum Length of Program: 2 Terms
  • Minimum Credit Hours for Graduation: 12

Admission Requirements

  • Submit completed application and application fee
  • Be at least 16 years of age
  • Submit official High School transcript or GED transcript with test scores and all post secondary transcripts in a sealed envelope
  • Meet assessment requirements
  • Student must have the ability to lift 25 lbs., to do prolonged standing and to tolerate heat.

The following is a suggested path to complete this program in a timely manner. An individual’s path to completion may be different based on institutional and personal factors affecting his/her academic progress.

Note: While all courses are offered, they may vary by term and campus. See the program advisor for any questions.

First Term
CUUL 1000Fundamentals of Culinary Arts4
CUUL 1110Culinary Safety and Sanitation2
Second Term
Cooking Option- Choose 6 credit hours
CUUL 1120Principles of Cooking6
CUUL 1122*Foundations of Cooking Principles AND(3)
CUUL 1124*Foundations of Cooking Techniques(3)

Note: CUUL 1000 and CUUL 1110 require a final grade of a C to advance into any other CUUL occupational courses.

*Only applies to dual-enrolled MOWR students.


Catering specialists plan, manage and coordinate catered events that are usually taking place off premises. They oversee the operation of a kitchen, its menu production, the purchasing of food products, the employee training, staff scheduling and respecting proper transportation and sanitation procedures. They are also involved in the menu development and the coordination of events with their clients.

How to become a catering specialist ?

Candidates need a combination of education and several years of related work experience to become a chef/caterer. An associate degree in the field is usually sufficient for most catering positions. Candidates should have strong organization skills, the ability to multi-task and excellent communication skills.


The medium annual wage for a chef or a catering manager varies greatly depending on the geographical location of the business and the type of events catered. Catering can be a very lucrative endeavor depending on the size of events catered. It is also an easy way to get started in our industry as many caterers are able to work out of their homes.

Job Outlook

The employment of chefs and catering managers is projected to grow steadily as the economy improves. As new and current companies expand their operations, they will need more staff to oversee and administer their operations.

food production worker

Program Faculty
Patrick Boutier, CEC, CCA

Barry Levey, CEC

Carolyn Fludd, CEPC

Daniel Krinsky