How to Become a Baking and Pastry Chef in Nevada

Do you think you would enjoy a career that mixes art, science and business? Do you enjoy making tasty treats and would like to bring your talents to the culinary world? If so, you might enjoy a career as a pastry chef.

Baking and pastry chefs do more than bake delicious desserts. They are also deeply involved in the many tasks of keeping a business running. This can include such things as managing inventory, hiring and overseeing staff, marketing, and complying with food service regulations. Pastry chefs spend long hours on their feet in a time-stressed environment, often working evenings, weekends and early morning shifts.

Nevada Guidelines for Pastry Chefs

Nevada does not require licensing for baking and pastry chefs, nor is there specific oversight for the profession. However, a minimum level of education is needed for chefs, including a high school diploma or equivalent prior to seeking vocational training.

While it is possible to pursue training on the job, most pastry chefs choose to attend an accredited culinary arts program. Many also seek additional apprenticeships in specific areas or with certain accomplished chefs. Those working in the profession will need to be aware of state and local regulations for the food service industry.

Training programs for Pastry Chefs in Nevada

There are several programs within the state for pastry chefs including:

  • The Art Institute of Las Vegas offers both a diploma in Baking and Pastry and an Associate of Science in Baking and Pastry. The diploma requires 50 credit hours over four quarters, while the associate’s degree requires 90 credit hours over six quarters. Both programs promise to push and challenge students within a supportive environment, fully preparing them to enter the industry upon graduation.
  • Truckee Meadows Community College in Reno offers a Certificate of Achievement in Baking and Pastry. Students will become competent in basic and advance culinary skills through a series of trainings, while learning the basics of commercial bakery operations.
  • College of Southern Nevada in Las Vegas offers both a Certificate of Achievement and an Associate of Applied Science in Culinary Arts. The program promises to marry culinary skills and management skills for maximum success in the industry upon graduation.

Additional Certifications

The American Culinary Federation (ACF), a popular and well-known program in the industry, offers myriad certifications for culinary professionals based on experience and skills. Candidates will also need to pass an examination to become certified. The culinary field is highly competitive and while acquiring additional certifications is not required, it will greatly improve the prospects for employment and career advancement.

Nevada Salaries and Career Growth Projections

The outlook for baking and pastry chefs in Nevada is good, with data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) showing the state as one of the leading areas for job concentration in the industry. The median wage in the state in 2018 was $52,930, slightly above the national median wage for this field. Job growth in the state is also above average, with the projected growth rate estimated to be 18.9 percent between 2016 and 2026, a favorable comparison to the national projection of 9.6 percent for baking and pastry chefs.

Opportunities in Nevada for Pastry Chefs

Nevada has plenty of opportunity for employment for baking and pastry chefs. Las Vegas, in particular, is among the top cities in the country for employment in the industry. It is also a well-known destination for foodies and a hub of food tourism.

Possible employers in the state of Nevada include MGM Resorts International, Penn National Gaming, Campus Cooks, Live Nation, Compass Group North America, Hyatt, Mina Group, Wynn Las Vegas and Eldorado Resorts, Inc.

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