1. I'am 24 years old and Im dying to be a pastry chef and I now that for some years I will have crappy pay (and thats a little scary to me), but I dont care. Im 24 and I want to go to culinary school for baking/pastry arts. I was thinking I would go for a four year degree(I do have general education credits and would not like for them to go to waste), but Im not sure if that is necessary or not. I would like to be an executive pastry chef eventually though. I was talking to this chef that I work with he isnt a pastry chef, but he said that I should also do an apprenticeship. So I thought it would be a good idea that while in school I could do an informal apprenticeship so that way I can get a solid foundation in culinary education and have experience as well for when I go out into the workforce. Is it possible to do both school and an apprenticeship at the same time?
2. Also I dont want to go to a fancy culinary school or one of those for profit schools (Le Cordon Bleu/ Art institutes) and pay thousands upon thousands of dollars. Are there any public colleges/universities that offer four year degree baking pastry arts degrees besides CIA and Johnson and Wales? I have been looking, but I cant find anything.
3. Also is it important that I go to a school accredited by the American Culinary Federation?
4. Can someone give me the 100% truth about how much a pastry chef really makes if they are not an executive pastry chef? I
5. Is being a pastry chef as stressful as being a regular chef?
6. Will I have a life outside the kitchen? Thanks for reading all my questions! Sorry I have so many.