Cooking on a Dime

Creating delicious meals in South Jersey on a budget just got easier with these simple how-to's of the kitchen.

To Go To Culinary School Or Not To Go To Culinary School? February 11, 2012

As children, we are told that we can be anything we want to be and making that dream a reality is easier than one might think. It’s much easier to have a career in something that we love and enjoy doing rather than regretting the career decisions we have made. Food is something that we cannot live without and many people have a passion for making this necessity.


Culinary School is extremely popular for those who want to pursue their love of food and passion for not just cooking, but baking as well. “I wanted to do something fun and interesting and the only thing I truly had a passion for and enjoyed doing in high school was baking,” said my sister, Christina Alderman.


After graduating high school in 2004, Christina enrolled in the brand new Baking and Pastry Option of the Culinary Arts program at Atlantic Cape Community College (ACCC). “I never enjoyed school work so I certainly didn’t want to attend a four-year university.” After Christina graduated from the two-year program, she began working at Genaurdis Family Markets as a cake decorator. After five years of dedicated service, Christina left Genaurdis for about a year to seek a new career opportunity. However, as fate would have it, Christina is now back at Genaurdis doing what she loves.


Just like my sister, Jensen Sweeten had a passion for baking. “I wanted to go to school to do something I love doing rather than dreading getting up in the morning for something that I don’t like,” she said. Sweeten is attending ACCC now for the Baking and Pastry Option; she is taking her general education courses now but can’t wait to finally get into the kitchen.


“Growing up I always had a great interest in food,” said Jovita Salamone, a full-time Store Team Lead (STL) at Walgreens. “Who doesn’t love the way food looks, smells and tastes, right? I enjoyed watching cooking shows and hearing about how wonderful it tasted, seeing how great it looked; food has a way of bringing smiles to faces and that was one of the things I enjoyed most.”


Salamone attended The Art Institute of Philadelphia and gained an Associates of Science in Culinary Arts. “Originally, I didn’t plan on going to cooking school,” said Salamone, “but things in life changed that led me there. I realized that if I wanted to get some sort of degree why not do it with the thing that I enjoyed most: food. Unfortunately my circumstances were a lot different from other graduates. I was employed at my job for ten years and with the rates of unemployment and lack of job security elsewhere I found it hard to start over again. Do I want to pursue a career in culinary? Of course, but I hope to do it once most of my bills, including school, have been reduced.”


Just like Sweeten’s dream of owing her own bakery one day, Christina hopes to do the same, but with a little twist. “I want to own my own bakery that specializes in cakes. Specifically children’s cakes.” Maybe Sweeten and Christina could work together and open up their own little bakery! Oh the possibilities!


Courtesy of Joe Gunawan |


“Remember, food is a form of art – the only problem is that unless you take a picture it isn’t going to last for very long (LOL).”
– Wise words of Jovita Salamone.


3 Responses to “To Go To Culinary School Or Not To Go To Culinary School?”

  1. Meemilah Says:

    This was a great post, Rachel!

  2. knollb52 Says:

    I’ve particularly enjoyed your personal touch that you’ve added to your blogs by mentioning your inspirations and the story regarding culinary school. I think it gives your readers a better sense of your motives and expertise on the subject of the blog itself. I also liked the inclusion of the prices for the contents in your recipe- this certainly would help readers on a limited budget in looking into the recipe before going to the store.

    One thing you might look to do in your posts is to include more links within the posts themselves. Not only does it give your readers more to further explore a topic, I think the hyperlinks would help to break up some of the lengthier-looking paragraphs in your stories. Overall, a very enjoyable blog to read though. I’ll certainly be following. Keep up the good work.

  3. That was a great post, it was filled with detail

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