Culinary arts class in session.

Why Choose Culinary Arts at PPCC?

The Culinary Arts is not for those with a lack of dedication, endurance, or ambition. The life of a Culinarian is simultaneously arduous and immensely rewarding. In this, one of the fastest growing career fields in the nation, the locally recognized Culinary Arts program at PPCC will prepare graduates for challenging and competitive careers in the culinary and hospitality fields. This program offers various degrees and specialized certificates to meet your needs.

What will I study?

Under the direction of skilled chefs, culinary arts students will be able to direct and participate in the preparation, seasoning, and cooking of foods and gain culinary skills.

Students will learn:

  • National sanitation standards
  • Administration and management skills
  • Cooking skills
  • Food production and processing
  • Customer and personal service
  • Knife and cutlery skills
  • Understand the culinary industry on a large scale.

Culinary arts graduates will be able to understand both theory and display a mastery of practical kitchen fundamentals.

Example Classes I Might Take

Trains students in the basic fundamentals of the culinary field. The course will include student overview, training in areas of Management, Culinary Arts, Baking & Pastry. Student will be trained in all areas in order to be successful in both Lecture and Lab courses. Training will include program overviews, safety & sanitation fundamentals, culinary math skills, culinary vocabulary, lab requirements, using online training methods, competitions, basic knife skills, equipment identification and proper usage, professionalism, food service history, kitchen organization, basic principles of cooking, food science, study skills, proper food storage techniques, recipes, cost management, library resources and student learning organizations, scholarships and culinary career opportunities. Students must complete this course with a grade C or higher, prior to advancing in the program.
Demonstrates the use of management skills training in the food service industry by use of student interaction research, and also demonstrates the various styles of menu development. Includes basic responsibility for food service personnel in all kitchen positions with emphasis on advertising vs. publicity, job analysis, description specifications, and duty list as related to recruiting and hiring process. Covers application, interview techniques, training, and hiring process. Incorporates preparation of menus for different styles of food service concept establishments.
Enables students to examine types of beverages and equipment including wines, beers, spirits, bar equipment, and staffing. Covers profitability, marketing, federal and local laws, and service. Focuses on the history of making and processing wines, spirits, and beers.
Introduces the student to the basic rules of sanitation, food-borne illnesses, safe food temperatures, safe food handling techniques, the HACCP Program, pest control procedures, and local/state health rules and regulations for food service operations. At the completion of the course students take a nationally recognized test from the Education Foundation of the National Restaurant Association. If passed with a score of 75% or more, students receive a Certificate of from the Education Foundation.

What are graduates doing now?

Pikes Peak Community College alumni have positions in areas such as: Head chef, pastry chef, cooks, and many other positions. Some graduates have gone on to own their own businesses including catering services, diners, and restaurants. Check out the Pin Project, an interactive map featuring some of our graduates.

Graduates from PPCC's Culinary Arts programs have also gone on to study at the following schools:

UCCS, CSU-Pueblo, CSU-Fort Collins, Colorado College and more.

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The knowledge and skill sets I gained at PPCC were necessary tools in becoming the business owner I am today. The small classroom setting granted us valuable face time with our Chef instructors that wouldn’t have been possible in a larger school environment. I recommend PPCC to anyone who tells me they want to work in the food service industry.

--Andres Velez Owner of Piglatin Foodtruck

Culinary Arts Program Mission, Goals, and Objectives

The mission and goals of the Culinary Arts program at Pikes Peak Community College are to provide the highest quality training at the community college level. The objective is for our graduates to gain the knowledge and skills necessary to become employable as a first cook or assistant baker in an industrial kitchen. This will be accomplished through:

  • High expectations of faculty, staff and students.
  • Remain current with industry standards by maintaining an active Advisory Committee of community culinary professionals.
  • Maintain currency in technology and equipment.
  • Adhere to the American Culinary Federation Educational Foundation accreditation standards.
  • Encourage Life Long Learning
Michael Paradiso

Featured Professors

Michael Paradiso

Culinary Arts Dept Chair,
Faculty

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Get started in Culinary Arts

Apply to PPCC Request Information

Apply for Scholarships

Every Year the PPCC Foundation offers hundreds of thousands of dollar's worth of scholarship money for eligible and in need students.

Scholarship Information

New Culinary Students

Are required to attend one of the Culinary Arts Orientation sessions. For more information see dates below or call 719-502-3300

New students must attend one of the listed session dates prior to registering into the Culinary Arts Program

Next Sessions are TBA


Once students attend a session, they will be able to set up a registration appointment with a Culinary Arts advisor.

For questions please email: michael.paradiso@ppcc.edu, richard.carpenter@ppcc.edu, gary.hino@ppcc.edu, or heidi.block@ppcc.edu