Culinary Institute of America Top Questions

What should every freshman at your school know before they start?

Gabrielle

Don't doubt yourself, you're going to an accredited culinary school in New York and you'll do great. Worrying and doubting is stressful and having stress in your life is negative. You don't need negativity.

Kayleigh

Of all the things I'd wish I'd told myself while I was in high school, the best advice I could have given myself would be to not be afraid. Don't be afraid of taking any risks. Risks are opportunities in disguise, and enlightenment waiting to happen. There is so much world out there, and if you want to experience it, take every risk you can, and just wait and see where the world carries you. Distances from comfortability can be counted, experiences are preiceless.

Trisha

If I could go back and talk to myself as a high school senior about what I know now about college life and making the transition is never give up. College is completly different from high school, the main advice I would give myself as a senior is know what I want to study in college, be prepared for a lot more work, longer class days, many new faces, and being home sick. College is where you grow up, take responsibility for your own actions, and learn to live on your own being poor.

Marcella

Thinking back to when I was a high school senior, I knew absolutely nothing about college. All I knew was that my older sister attended college but I never really asked her about college life. Knowing what I know now, I wish I did ask her some questions before I moved to school. The first thing I would tell myself is to just be prepared for how different life is going to be. New friends, hard and competitive classes, and even taking the trash out all on my own. It was all new to me when I got here. I have so much responsibility now. I just wish I knew when I was in high school. I would also tell myself that I am going to lose close high school friends but make life long new ones in college. I lost a lot of friends back home, but I made so many here at the Culinary Institute. I would also tell myself it's okay to make mistakes as long as your learn from them. This school is all about learning from your mistakes. I am so happy here now, I just wish I was better prepared for college.

Jazmin

Stay in school! As you get older and have to take on responsibility as an adult, your going to realize that things don't come handed to you. Your parents are always going to love you but they are not always going to provide for you. There are going to be obstacles that come your way that may seem unfortunate! Do not get discouraged. Push through the hard times for a few more years and then you can relax and enjoy your hard work and build your life the way you want it. Surround yourself with people who have the same goals you do. To graduate! Become one of the few people in your family to graduate from college. Its going to be hard! Your going to feel like you want to quit, but your not the only one struggeling for the same goal, so suck it up butter cup and get that college degree! I know you can!

Rosemary

Knowing what I know now if i could go back to high school there are alote of things i would change. The first thing that i would change would be to join more clubs that support my major. I ld have socialize more with my peeres. Things that i would change academicy would be to study more. I would also have done alote more extra credit so that I could have a high GPA.

Alicia

I would tell myself to follow the advice of my family and doctors, which was to graduate early with the best grades I could achieve. Even though I only took three classes my senior year, to make sure that I worked as hard as I could and that once I graduated, I could start college and work to fight against my anxiety disorder so I could one day obtain my dreams of being an artist. I would make sure I knew I was doing the best I could and that, while it did not seem that way at the time, I was doing a great job with school dealing with my circumstances. To fight the anxiety and actually attend a college class on campus was worth it, the whole fight against my anxiety was worth it. Never give up and keep on fighting for your dreams. I realize now how important that is and wish I knew it better back then.

Noorliza

College life is a big transition from high school. It calls for a more responsible and focus life style and, at the same time, an opportunity to foster new friends and build up the network that I can rely on in future. I need to carefully decide what I want to do with my life and look positively towards the future. Knowing what I want to achieve in life will make it easier to build up the passion and appreciate the process of studying and completing the various courses required by the program. Choosing a college that meets my financial needs, provides the supporting staff to advise me when I am at a crossroad in deciding on my career and encourages more student interactions to build strong peer support will take a priority than just its prestige and national accolades. As I am weak in maths, I will need to get help beefing up the basic concepts to prepare for college maths that I will need to take during the Freshman year, and if I can overcome it, the years ahead will be a more enjoyable experience for me.

Ashley

If I could go back in time I would tell my self to start talking to people you know are attending the college at the same time I was, so I could be better aquainted with them. I would also tell my self to start applying to scholarships sooner,and also to apply to jobs before moving into the college. The reason I would do this is because college really throws unexpected expenses at you. The reason I would have my self get better aquainted is so then I wouldn't be as nervous my first week as I was. I would also tell my self to talk to the students that are currently attending to get their oppinions of the school and also I would tell myself to visit the college a few more time than I did to get a better knowledge of it.

British

Hi past self! Let us sit down and have a talk about our near future. I know we have plans to start off at community college but that is not a smart chose. I know from experience that when we transfer we will have to start our Associate in Culinary Arts all over. Therefore go straight to The Culinary Institute of America this way we will waste no time. I know that leaving home and going somewhere with no family will be hard but it is worth it. We will build a great life and our family will always be here. When you get to New York be cautious of the people around you. Don't trust everyone because not everyone has our best interest at heart. Stay true to us and never forget that God has our back. Make sure that we take this experience serious and work on our study habits now. We need to learn to study better now so we don't struggle in the future. I know how lazy we can be and how much we can procrastinate but that has to change. One last thing do not stress the tuition it is covered.

Elizabeth

Going back in time and being a high school senior again the advice I would give myself would be to not procrastinate with my work and the financial needs. I wish I had started saving money earlier. While in high school I would have a couple days to complete assignments but now while im in college I have a night or two, so i cant procrastinate on all of my work and i have to make sure I get enough sleep so I dont ware my self out and get sick.

Kathy

Don't panic. Everything will be ok.

Kari

Take it easy:) Sure college is a bit of a switch from the life you are used to and that can be good and bad. You are going to have fun , be challenged and experience everything in between. Relax. You ARE going to make mistakes, but it will be ok. You are going to figure out a lot about yourself the first couple of years; use what you learn to better yourself and your life. Be bold woman! There are so many opportunities out there and you don't want to miss them becuase you're a little scared. Finally take it in and enjoy. The moments you spend in and out of class are special and you will look back on them. Keep in mind balance is kinda key to you not going crazy, but live it up:)

Vivian

If I had the chance to go back in time and talk to myself as a senior, I would say to take full advantage of the opportunities at college. I took more time than I should have to break into different organizations, and that might have been a partly due to the fac that I was shy. I would encourage myself to not be afraid and take advantage of the time that I have in a new place, meeting new people.

Ashley

Don't get caught up in the social scene too much and prepare for you classes before the day of. Always look into the extra resourses your professor gives you. Ask questions that will actually teach you something and never be afraid to use your professor for additional expertise and experience.

travis

go to college sooner, manage finances better enlist in military sooner

Phillip

Nothing, I am exactly where I want to be, doing exactly what I wanted to do.

Cataryna

Its not necessary to fret about the little challenges that come up everyday in high school classes. You can do what seems like overwhelming, and you'll get where you want to be in time.

Jeremy

I would tell myself that no matter what keep pushing and don't give up. Pain is weakness leaving the body. Success starts with you.

Ryan

I would tell myself to look more into financial aid. The Culinary Institute of America is probably the best campus and school I have the opportunity to be apart of. Granted I have never attendted other colleges. I feel like I'm getting a unique college experience. However, the school's tuition has increased since i've been here so the more money I could save the better.

Lauren

You are already everything you want to be and more. Continue to grow and live your life with happiness.

James

If I was able to travel back in time to my senior year of high school and give myself advice on college life, I would start by telling myself that it is very important to get to know all of my professors. The reason I found this very useful my first year of college was because it allowed me to reach the goal I had set for myself which was to ask many questions and meet new people so I could learn from their past experiences. By stepping out of my comfort zone and talking to my professors I was able to gain valuable knowledge on how to succeed in class, life tips and career knowledge so that I could decide on the right career for me. In high school I did not talk with my teachers, I only did what was asked but in college it has proved to help me grow and learn to network. I know this will be a useful skill when I venture out in the real world.

Brielle

I would tell myself to think about how I was going to be able to pay for school and maybe choose a school that was a little more offering of financial aid. Maybe look for a few more loans of scholarships.

Christina

If I could go back in time and give myself advise on transitioning to college, it would be to not quit. No matter how hard college life may feel, or what curve balls life may throw at you, keep going. It is better to take fewer credits and take your time achieving your degree, than to drop out and try to finish it later in life. I wish someone had told me that when I was a senior, I would not have stopped attending college, and I would have a degree by now. It is always best to talk to someone, like an advisor, about your life and discuss your options to continue going to college. There will always be circumstances that may stop you from attending school; however, if you can avoid quitting college, you should. It is more beneficial to finish now, rather than later. In this economy now, many people cannot find jobs without a degree. You do not want to be one of those people. Take my advise, DON'T Quit, Try 100% and FINISH!

Jamie

I would have taken a lot more time to seriously consider what I truly felt passionate about before deciding on attending a college. I would have gotten much more experience working in kitchens in order to better prepare myself for the culinary industry. Nevertheless, I am grateful for the experiences I had and the knowledge I have gained from my education at Central Connecticut State University.

Catherine

Going back to being a senior in high school, I would give myself advice on varying topics but would stress one main action: Calm down! After less than a year, I have grown as a student, a person, and an aspiring culinarian. One thing I have learned through recent life occurrences is not to stress out under pressure. Rather than worrying about everything, prioritize and focus on what needs to be done first and remember that everything will work out. Proving hard work pays off, I have successfully completed my first year of college three thousand miles away from everything I knew. In the kitchen, loosing your cool does not help get the job done. While sometimes anxiety is unavoidable, as stress and pressure is constantly present while serving customers, it is best to stay focused, work efficiently, and multitask not only actions but also thoughts. Applying this work method to life, I find myself much less stressed and more adaptable. Being willing AND able to improvise is an extremely important aspect to life. So if I were speaking to myself, or any highschool senior, I would say do not lose your focus. Things will work out for the best.

Nakita

Deciding on a major early is extremely important. Also apply for as many scholarships as possible, and as soon as you can! Continue being self motivated and you will succeed!

Meggan

When it comes to transitioning from high school to college you need to be well prepared. It stops being about hoping to do excellent on a test or getting an A on your project. Within college it is about putting in your all and driving yourself to do the best you can absolutely do. High school may have been filled with classes you did not want to take but college is something that you strived for. It is about the real world and learning as much as you can so you can be on top of the person next to you. College is setting you up for your career and what is going to be what helps you support your family in the future. When making the transition you need to be fully prepared and organized. You must have an open mind and not be nervous because it doesn't matter what people think of you. It matters what you think about yourself and how much you are getting for every penny you put into it. You should go in loving what you do and ready to learn through every minute of every class.

Nailah

I would give myself the advice to seriously hunt down and dedicate time to filling out scholarships. It never hit me until recently that tuition can truly be helped by telling people honestly about your goals, ambitions, and the things that you are passionate about. Taking a little time out of your day to be commited to scholarships can leave you graduating from one of the best schools in the country with little or no bills to show for it. I would also advise myself to remember that college is an awesome experience. You meet people that you may remain friends with for a lifetime and be introduced to different things, but the ultimate reason for attending college is to take away knowledge that will catapult your career. Always remember your purpose ,and enjoy the ride that you take to get there.

Sarah

I would tell myself that college is definitely a challenge, but taking the time and studying is what will help you succeed. The transition is a little strange but go around your dorm and campus and meet people. Everyone here is friendly because they're all passionate for food. College is similiar to high school, but definitely more work. I would tell myself to keep a study chart and go to the library from day one and read as much as I can about the culinary field. This industry is constantly changing, and the best chefs from an early start read everything about food.

nicole

If I could go back to my senior and help myself transition to college I would try to become more independent. In high school I was always a follower and never had a voice or an opinion. When I came to college I had a hard time making friends and speaking up in class. I think if I became more out going in high school and made new friends it would have been easier to leave home and transition into my new classes and peers. It is still somthing that I work on now, but I am happy with how far I have come and the friends that I was able to make throughout the last couple of years.

madeleine

Save every penny, learn to need/use less and accept every oppertunity you come across.

Joey

If I could go back and give myself some advice It would be to make sure that I have all of my stuff in order. Occasionally I would run into issues either in class or with the offices and I would have to frantically try to fix the problem. I would also tell myself to be more confident in your ability and to try to make more friends. I am gratefull for the friends that I have made I just wish that it didn't take me obout a year to make friends and two years to make great friends. Take advantage of all the opportunities that come your way and try to learn and experience as much as you possibly can. This is a huge chapter in your life and live it to the fullest with minimul regreats. Don't be aftraid of failing, it is going to happen. The best thing you could do is to learn from every experience and somtimes we learn more from our failures than our success. If you don't learn anything from your failurs, than you have truly failed.

Gerald

I would tell the younger version of me to study hard, but don't be afraid to fail. Some of the greatest lessons to be learned come from not suceeding the first time. Take the time to reflect on what went wrong, learn from it and try it again. Don't be afraid to take risks, sit in the front row of your class, don't be afraid to raise your hand if you know the answer, or think you do. Don't just be a number. Choose your friends wisely and get involved in campus activities and clubs. Your education and the time you spend getting involved will have much more of a positive impact on you than you realize. Get to know your professors well, talk to them, ask them for advice and tell them about your future plans. Most of all, have a great college experience.

Christa

Relax! Take a deep breath and relax. There is no need to worry about making new friends or being the best in your class. As long as you study hard, you will be okay. Keep your grades up, work hard, and do not be intimidated by others. Home is only an hour and a half away, if you are feeling stressed out or overwhelmed home is just a train ride away. Overall, just be yourself. Do not change yourself to meet anyone else's wants or needs. Focus on your studies, but leave some time for your freinds as well.

Crystol

Don't slack off. Pay close attention to the study techniques taught to you. Stay focused and ogranized. Do all of your own work and learn to manage your time. It is better to study as you learn the information and get a good nights sleep then to try and cram all the information in before finals and forget it after. Study with others, not only does it help to develop social skills it increases your retention and presetns diffrent view points.

Ashley Marie

Currently, I am a junior in high school taking a four college courses during the summer of 2011. I am enrolled in the DUAL enrollment program at John B. Alexander, in which I am granted to show my full potentual towards making my education a successfull one. Although, I have felt the expereience of being a college student, I still feel there is more to learn than just study habits and descipline for correctly completeing an academic course. When I enter my high school in early August, I plan to encourage myself that "every choice has its consequences, and I will choose to take advantage of special oppertunities." I will make note to myself that I need to put my money where it counts. I am committed to graduate in December as a "December graduate" in the year of 2011. Graduating with six college courses, I am wanting to invest any scholarships and grants into my college education. Thank you.

Christian

I have recently given this a great deal of thought, having looked back at where I was and the Man i have become, and I would say only one short and sweet sentence; "Everything is going to be alright."

Carla Beatrice

I would tell myself to pay more attention in my English, Math, and History classes because a strong foundation (especially in Math) will make life easier in college. I would also tell myself not to treat seinor year easily just bevause I am about to graduate. Don't let "senioritis" get into you. It can hinder you from learning essential subjects for your future college classes/courses.

Mayra

If I could go back to high school and give myself advice I think it would have to be, to relax. Making the transition into college is difficult when you're stressed out and it is much easier if you take a step back and breathe. Just think to yourself and remember that it will all be alright.

Georgios

Do not be afraid of anything . You can do it, leave your dream.

Shianne

The only thing that I would advise my high school self to do differently when coming to school at the Culinary Institute of America is to continue to live on campus. I have decided after spending sometime off campus that it is super convienent. Also, I have come to find out that, just as I have been previously been advised, that living with friends is not a good idea. Besides this, I would do tell myself to do everything to same!

Aaron

The advice I would give myself would to focus more. throughout my life, nothing has come easy to me. i would say to sit down and study more instead of going out. get better grades and try 100%. never give up on your dreams and always strive for your personal best. without the perseverence you will get no where. take a risk and a chance, and don't ever look back on it with regret

Anne-Marie

I would tell meself to expect the unexpected. I have grown so much as a person since I came to school. I attend college 600 miles away from home so I would have prepared myself to being away from my family for most of the year. I think that I would have put more emphasis on my study habits also, because I am so envolved on campus I really have to make sure that I am paying attention and making sure that I am getting all of my work done when I need to. I think that I would have saved more money before I went away to school also because I don't like having to ask my parents for money I work a lot on campus on top of clubs and classes so I have a very loaded schedule with 2 jobs and 18 credits a semester along with about 6 different clubs. But I wouldn't change a thing.

Corey

I dropped out of high school before my senior year. A few years later, I earned my GED and a certificate from a technical school. I am currently in my first semester of community college, after being out of school for almost eleven years. If I could go back to talk to my high school self, I would urge the student that I was to attend classes regularly, apply himself to his work, finish high school, and go straight to community college without delay. This first semester of college has been an easier transition than I initially expected. My wife encouraged me to go back and pursue a college degree. I wish someone had been around to do that when I decided to quit high school.

Zoë

Always be open to new things, don't be afraid to set up the rules of the house/dorm, it is so important to have a relax zone when get home that to be uncomfortable, and pay for it is unacceptable. Be adventurous, this is the time of your life where minor mistakes are forgive, and you are allowed, and incouraged to experiment to find the real you. Finally set up an exersise routine, nothing is more important than stay healthy, when a diet changes, weight gain can almost be promised.

Faith

Scholarships would have made my college life easier; loans are the most confusing part of the transition and the less you owe, the less you have to stress. Each time I looked at scholarship sites, I only saw the deadline and how close or far that date was. I felt hopeless and lethargic. Seeing how much I now owe has snapped me back to life. Applying to scholarships would be the best advice I would give my high school self.

Marc

do what you do, and dont let anybody tell you otherwise

S Whitney

I would tell my self that I am on the right track and to be prepared for the time of my life! Although the transition to such an alternative learning atmosphere may be difficult, do not take it for granted. Things are more hands on and even though a majority of your grade derives from what you produce in the kitchen, do not slack on the side home work. It is simple and may seem like a nuisance, but the information is extremely informative and interesting. Although college is exciting, and the social life can be very intoxicating; do not forget why you are there. Also, do not back out of staying for the Bachelors program. The world is big and exciting and you may want to jump into it and make money; but the bachelors program will help you understand society and the world around you so that when you DO enter it, you can percieve it more clearly. When I grateduated from the associates, I didn't want to stay a second longer, but I am glad did because now I am all the wiser and a have a definate direction for where I want to go.

Jessica

Dear high school Jessica, I am writing today, to give you some very helpful advise for the future. I understand you already got accepted to The Culinary Institute of America, however it is going to get harder from here on out. DO NOT wait any longer to start applying for scholarships! It is not to early! I know you can not wait to get out of high school and final be able to do what you love doing, but do not get destracted. Get prepared and read more information about baking, do not waste time. My most important advise is to not hold back. Take as much as you can out of each and every class. and do not be afraid to ask questions. A lot of times you are going to struggle and think you are not smart enough or good enough. But just know you do not give yourself enough credit. In the end, you will come to realize and be proud all of the amazing things you have accomplished and excelled at. Good luck and have fun with all of the amazing things you are about to learn! Sincerely, Jessica Callahan