Culinary Arts


Program Description

The Culinary Arts Diploma Program offers students the opportunity to acquire the skills and knowledge needed to obtain an entry-level position in the field. Students will gain hands-on knowledge of sauces, meats, and baked products. In addition, they will learn about kitchen safety and sanitation techniques to ensure food safety. Finally, they will cover management and supervision in the food service industry.

Why Culinary Arts?

If you have a passion and respect for food and an eye for business, FTC’s Culinary Arts Diploma Program is for you.

Our diploma program in Culinary Arts will provide you with the necessary knowledge to work, manage, and cook in any modern kitchen. In addition, Florida Technical College’s proximity to the highly touristic area of Orlando/Kissimmee and South Florida allows for many opportunities to work in hotels, resorts, timeshares, restaurants, theme parks, cruises or even to open your own restaurant. This 15-month program is mostly hands-on, with classes beginning every month.

Possible Employment Opportunities *

  • Banquet Cook
  • Line Cook
  • Catering Cook

Credential Earned

Culinary Arts Diploma

Related Certifications

  • ServSafe® Food Manager
  • ServSafe® Food Allergens

Duration of the Program

15 Months | 68.5 Quarter Credits
Total Contact Hours: 975
Lecture Hours: 460
Lab Hours: 320
Externship Hours: 195

Core Courses

Cuisine, Culture & Kitchen Organization

This course provides an introduction to the food service industry that examines gastronomic history, basic industry terminology, and the role that modern chefs play in the community, as well as their duties and responsibilities. Students will also examine the equipment and utensils used in food service operations and identify basic ingredients and their applications.

Culinary Math

This course provides students an understanding of food service math. They will use these math skills to calculate yield percentages, determine portion costs, and adjust the yield of a recipe. Students will also learn how to convert US measurements into metric measurements.


This course provides students an understanding of basic sanitation, safe food handling, and work safety principles. They will learn about food service sanitation based on ServSafe standards.


Basic Culinary Techniques

This course will expose students to the kitchen environment. It will also teach them the basic skills and knowledge required to succeed in the industry. They will learn how to perform basic knife cuts to meet industry standards and how to prepare stocks and mother sauces. Finally, students will practice basic cooking methods with numerous ingredients to understand the different applications and purposes of each method in relation to the ingredients used.

Meat, Fish, & Poultry Fabrication

This course introduces students to the most common meats, poultry, and fish in the culinary arts industry. Students will learn about meat cuts used in menus as well as game and fowl fabrication. They will also study to fish and shellfish fabrication. In addition, they will gain knowledge about sanitation standards, safety, storage (temperatures and methods), portion control, quality grades, and the cost of each cut. Finally, students will be able to practice the skills acquired by completing practical lab exercises.

Prerequisite: CUL1005

Garde Manger

This course will teach students about the fabrication and preparation of cold foods, salads, and hot and cold hors d’oeuvres. They will also study the basics of fruit carving and buffet decorations. The course will focus on egg and vegetable cookery, dressings, cured meats, and international cheeses, as well as their various presentation techniques. In addition, students will learn how to follow preparation lists with task divisions. Finally, they will examine buffet setups for different themes according to modern trends.

Prerequisite: CUL1005

Facility Menu Planning & Development

This course provides comprehensive information on key aspects of menu planning and development. The topics covered include menu trends, nutrition, yield testing, recipe costing, menu writing, and menu merchandising. Students will also learn about effective facility and menu planning, development, and design. Finally, they will examine market trends, market research, and information analysis.

Prerequisite: CUL1055

Nutrition & Allergens

In this course, students will learn about national nutrition and dietary guidelines and standards for food preparation. The topics covered include the history of genetically engineered crops and common food allergies. Students will also review safe practices when managing allergens in the kitchen.

Restaurant Service

This course focuses on the professional service expected and utilized in the modern food service industry. Students will review key aspects in providing excellent service, including the rules of excellent service, how to manage and solve customer problems, and communication skills. They will also practice table setup for restaurants, banquets, and buffets. Additionally, students will cover wine and beverage service. Furthermore, they will learn about front of house (FOH) staff division, FOH mentality, and work distribution. Finally, students will be able to practice the skills acquired by completing practical lab exercises.

Hospitality Supervision & Management

In this course, students will learn about general management, supervision, leadership, and human resource management. The course also covers staff selection and recruitment, employee orientation and training, and employee evaluations. Furthermore, this course will help students understand the role and responsibilities of a supervisor, allowing them to work more efficiently and effectively.

Prerequisite: CUL1055

International Cuisine

This course gives students the opportunity to explore modern and classic cookery of different cultures. The topics discussed include cuisines from different regions around the world, including Asia, Europe, the Mediterranean, Africa, United States, and Latin America. In addition, students will learn about history, cultural influences, and common recipes. The course includes lectures, demonstrations, and hands-on experience preparing international dishes.

Prerequisite: CUL1009

Introduction to Baking

This course will cover the fundamental principles of baking. Students will examine occupational and industry terminology, product and ingredient identification, baking equipment and utensils, and elaboration processes. They will learn about and practice the production of breads, quick breads, cookies, pies, and tarts. Emphasis will be placed on the application of safety and hygiene measures during the production process. Furthermore, students will be able to practice the skills acquired by completing practical lab exercises.

Food & Beverage Inventory/Cost Control

In this course, students will apply the math skills gained in the CUL 1230 course to ensure the accuracy of costs and control them effectively. Students will learn how to cost standard recipes, focusing on product yield for accurate purchasing. The course also covers standard operating procedures. Finally, students will review the systems used to keep food and beverage costs, labor costs, and operational costs at acceptable levels.

Prerequisite: CUL1230

Culinary Externship

This course is designed to expand career knowledge by helping students manage their time effectively, work faster, and improve their organizational skills in the kitchen. Students will also learn how to cook in an approved commercial food service and hospitality establishment. Students in the Culinary Arts Program must complete a total of 195 hours of practical experience.

Prerequisite(s): All Previous Program Courses

Related Programs

Campuses Available

Admission Requirements

High School Diploma or a recognized equivalent.

Possible Employment Opportunities *

  • Banquet Cook
  • Line Cook
  • Catering Cook

* These examples are intended to serve only as a general guide of possible employment opportunities. There are many factors that determine the job an individual may obtain and Florida Technical College cannot guarantee its graduates any particular job. Some positions may require a license or other certifications. We encourage you to research the requirements for the particular position you desire.

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