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Old 01-06-2013, 09:02 AM   #16
mickeysgal
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Kids in college may, at some point in time, do an about face with their career choice or college choice. It's tough and rare to know what they EXACTLY want to do coming out of high school. You have to roll with it until they figure it out.

First things first though. What are the terms of that scholarship? Is it a full year obligation? What is the ramification if she does not return for the spring? Would you have to pay it back, all, some, or none? If this is financially something you couldn't pay back, I'd say, fine, switch to culinary or whatever AFTER the scholarship obligation has been fulfilled.

Regarding culinary...be careful on the schools you choose and check their placement rates. Some seem a bit lightweight and not credible, imho.
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Old 01-06-2013, 09:10 AM   #17
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That's too bad. If one of my 2 in college did that we would be very disappointed.
I think that's too bad - that you would be disappointed that your child wanted to do what they wanted instead of what you wanted.

Honestly, if the OP's child really wants to go to culinary school I think the OP should give her nothing but support. Too many kids make choices based on what mommy and daddy and their friends and their guidance counselors and the "experts" suggest...... and then spend the rest of their lives working in fields that they don't really even enjoy. It's "their" life. Never forget that.

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Old 01-06-2013, 09:11 AM   #18
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My daughter is graduating high school this spring and going off to college! I'm terrified of this exact scenario, so much so that I basically tell her once a week "you know, you don't have to go away to college. You can spend your first year here at home and go to the local community college." She is insisting that she wants to leave. I have noticed a change in my daughter this year in high school. She is stressed out to the MAX. She went from seeing her counselor once every 6 weeks to seeing her every 2 weeks.

She's already been accepted to 4 different colleges with great offers, her grades are excellent for her final year and she's not taking a bunch of easy classes, but something in her head has changed. I can only hope that I'm not making a mistake by letting her go and I hope she's not making a mistake by insisting that I let her go. If this is a sign to come of her first year in college, I think we are in trouble, lol. Is there any kind of support group for parents of college freshmen
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Old 01-06-2013, 09:17 AM   #19
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She's been working part time at a pizza place for 2 years now...I suggested getting a waitstaff job at a local restaurant to test the waters..I know its not the same as being in the kitchen - Being a chef of any kind seems like long hours, holidays, work work work. but maybe she can make a more informed decision?
There are other jobs in the culinary field besides just working in a kitchen. Catering and private chef opportunities are the first two that come to mind. The money can be quite good and the benefit of having greater control of one's life (as opposed to when you are at your boss' beck and call all day, and sometimes nights and weekends too, and you're not allowed to make a decision without asking permission first) is, IMO, a big bonus. Just food for thought.

ETA: and fwiw I actually have a Masters degree so I'm not anti-college..... I'm just definately not pro-college for the sake of college. It's not about getting a piece of paper, it's about getting an education.....and what kind of education is best (and the best way to go about getting it) depends on what you want to do. Personally, I think this 'just get the degree and figure it out later' mentality is backwards. And unnecessarily expensive. My kids will be doing things much differently than 98% of their classmates, I'm sure. And I'll be proud of them for that.

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Old 01-06-2013, 09:18 AM   #20
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I dropped out of college several times. When I dropped out I ended up getting a job as a receptionist for a customs brokerage. Six years later I was an import FDA manager. Two years in I was making more money then all my friends with college degrees. College is not the end all be all for setting up your future. Sure, it looks nice on a resume but it doesn't mean everything.
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Old 01-06-2013, 09:35 AM   #21
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I was going to point out lifestyle and pay. It is a demanding field, on your feet all day, working evenings, weekends, holidays, shifts. There is a lot to consider.
But, would people be saying the same thing if she suddenly wanted to become a doctor.......demanding field, on your feet all day, being on call all hours of the day/night/and weekends too (not to mention huge debt, little sleep for X number of years, stress, etc. etc. etc.)

Maybe some would but I'm betting the majority would not. I can't help but feel the bias stems from the notion that culinary school is not impressive enough. Some, too many perhaps, would just be embarrassed to have to admit to their friends/family/coworkers that Junior dropped out of college to become a (*gasp*) 'cook'. Especially when cousin Sue's kid is getting his law degree at Harvard.

IDK... I just think it's too bad that so many are more interested in status than happiness (and this is not directed at you OceanAnnie...just a general observation)

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Old 01-06-2013, 10:07 AM   #22
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But, would people be saying the same thing if she suddenly wanted to become a cardiac surgeon.......demanding field, on your feet all day, being on call all hours of the day (not to mention huge debt, little sleep for X number of years, stress, etc. etc. etc.)

Maybe some would but I'm betting the majority would not. I can't help but feel the bias stems from the notion that culinary school is not impressive enough or noble enough. I just think it's too bad that so many are more interested in status than happiness (and this is not directed at you OceanAnnie...just a general observation)
I believe lifestyle of a career choice should factor into any discussion of a major with a student. It is a huge issue to address. Some people love flexibility, a stressful environment, etc.. Some do not. I have seen people very unhappy with their choice because they did not consider lifestyle strongly enough.

A cardiac surgeon has a skill set that is in demand, with high pay. While the hours are not great, the surgeon does have a say as to when to schedule the surgery theater. Lifestyle is still a factor, but it is not the same scenario. For some people, the high pay would off-set the lifestyle of the career.

I have also read news about culinary arts schools that rip off the students with high tuition and either no job prospects or no way to pay off the loans (as the pay is not great). It isn't a bias, it's based on news reports.

I think as a responsible parent, one should prepare his/her student for possible outcomes, have conversations, and help guide. Ultimately it is up to the student as it should be. I did recommend interviewing and shadowing a chef. That is the same recommendation I would have for any field.
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Old 01-06-2013, 10:16 AM   #23
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Originally Posted by OceanAnnie View Post
I believe lifestyle of a career choice should factor into any discussion of a major with a student. It is a huge issue to address. Some people love flexibility, a stressful environment, etc.. Some do not. I have seen people very unhappy with their choice because they did not consider lifestyle strongly enough.

A cardiac surgeon has a skill set that is in demand, with high pay. While the hours are not great, the surgeon does have a say as to when to schedule the surgery theater. Lifestyle is still a factor, but it is not the same scenario.

I have also read news about culinary arts schools that rip off the students with high tuition and either no job prospects or no way to pay off the loans (as the pay is not great). It isn't a bias, it's based on news reports.

I think as a responsible parent, one should prepare his/her student for possible outcomes, have conversations, and help guide. Ultimately it is up to the student as it should be. I did recommend interviewing and shadowing a chef. That is the same recommendation I would have for any field.
I was actually editing my post as you were replying.....in an attempt to further clarify. I just knew someone would want to point out that a cardiac surgeon has a say in scheduling and makes beaucoup bucks lol I was just trying to illustrate a point. (although I must add that many cardiac surgeons do not have complete control of their schedules....I have a friend whose husband is one and her family's life, because of his work, is no picnic. All that money? It isn't everything ).

Anyway...I don't necessarily disagree with much of what you say, but it doesn't really negate the point that I was trying to get across. As I said, I wasn't directing my post to you...just using some of your words as a jumping off point.

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Old 01-06-2013, 10:17 AM   #24
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I just want to add that forcing a student to continue in a school and/or program that they don't want to be in, even for one semester can backfire. If he or she does not want to be there it is highly likely that they will not be successful in those classes and end up costing you more money in the long run with having to repeat failed classes. (Speaking from experience)
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Old 01-06-2013, 10:21 AM   #25
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Originally Posted by pacrosby View Post
I actually edited my post right before you replied to further clarify my point. I knew someone would likely point out that a cardiac surgeon has a say in scheduling (although the truth is that many still need to be on call for emergencies). It was a general statement to make a point...not a perfect example to be picked apart.

Anyway...I don't necessarily disagree with much of what you say but it doesn't really negate my point.
I edited my post too.

To me it's about a choice based on information, a good fit, and potential opportunity.
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Old 01-06-2013, 10:44 AM   #26
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I agree that the first thing to look at is what are her obligations as far as the scholarship. She might well have to pay it all back f she refuses to play n the spring.

Personally, think I would encourage my child to finish out the school year as planned and during that time take the time to research culinary schools and the career, etc--rather than make a snap decision.
Generally, unless they were truly, horribly miserable at school, think would want them to stick it out one year anywhere, just to make sure general homesickness and finding their niche at school are not the real reasons for their desire to leave--that could lead to a pattern of hopping from one place to the next every few months and never really settling in.

(I say that having switched schools after one semester however had very specific reasons why I was disappointed in the education offered at the first school, switched to another n state school and kept more or less the same plan I had had--just with more rigorous classes).
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Old 01-06-2013, 10:45 AM   #27
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Not the same scenario, but a PP said that her DD was a HS Sr. and not sure if she should stay home and do CC or send her off to college, which DD wants.
My DS wanted to go away to school and the pressure of HS with pushing for college and the most prestigious ones to boot was hard on DS. However, he did choose to go away, picked his college and off he went. He was a freshman last year. After the first semester, he hated it..hated the school and many other personal issues. However, he didn't want to disappoint us and tried to stick it out the 2nd semester. We knew nothing of what was going on. Finally, at spring break he had a breakdown of sorts and said he couldn't go back. So now, we are mid semester, lost the money for that semester and he came home. The state he was in, we didn't feel safe sending him back. He worked full time from spring until August and now about to begin his 2nd semester at our CC. He is much happier. He is still in his major and will transfer once he completes his associates. It hurt us more that he was so unhappy and didn't tell us. We backed him 100% and we know that in the whole scheme of things, this was a blip and all will be good. We want a happy, healthy young man. He now admits he should have started at CC to begin with. It's a life lesson.
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Old 01-06-2013, 10:55 AM   #28
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I just want to add that forcing a student to continue in a school and/or program that they don't want to be in, even for one semester can backfire. If he or she does not want to be there it is highly likely that they will not be successful in those classes and end up costing you more money in the long run with having to repeat failed classes. (Speaking from experience)
I also wouldn't just give then the easy out either. If they entered into a scholarship agreement, they have the obligation to fulfill the agreement. The financial ramifications of breaking that agreement can be huge especially if this is a school that was only affordable via that scholarship. Life is full of tough choices and tough decisions and if the child wants to transfer then by all means transfer but after the agreement is fulfilled. They chose the agreement, accepted the terms of the agreement, then live by the agreement. If it was a multi-year scholarship, I would find out what the options and obligations are before agreeing to just not return next semester. And if it comes to pass that they need to stay until the end of the school year to fulfill the requirement of that scholarship and they still don't want to stay, it would be the child's financial bill, not mine.
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Old 01-06-2013, 11:06 AM   #29
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Is she aware of the cost of culinary school? A good school (French Culinary Institute, Le Cordon Bleu) can cost 20-45 grand a year. And as many have already said, chefs in restaurants generally don't make much. My cousin, despite his culinary education and skill, continues to bar tend instead of cook, because he makes much more money behind the bar than he does in the kitchen. Sad, but true.

On the flip side, I would encourage her to follow her dreams, but be prepared for reality -- and let her know that sometimes you have to stick things out in the real world. If she has grants and scholarships for this year, she should finish out the year and then figure out what's she's going to do next.

Best of luck, OP!
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Old 01-06-2013, 11:42 AM   #30
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Originally Posted by curlyjbs
My head is spinning. This kid was given a great opportunity through sports to attend a great university. Was it her first choice? No. Never heard of this school before. Did she even want to play in college? No....not until she was recruited - then it was the greatest school ever and she HAD to go there blah blah blah. She was accepted to 3 other schools as well (non sports related). Well 1st semester is over - Grades where ok & she made a lot of new friends......she's been home about 3 weeks and last night she tells us she doesnt want to play in the spring - she's just not excited about the season. OK fine. Finish the year but you'll have to find another school for the fall because we cant afford this school without the grants/scholarships you were given. She blows us away with. No, I want to take the next semester off and go to culinary school in the fall. I am speechless. I don't want her taking the semester off - I'm afraid she will never go back! And culinary school???? (No offense to culinary people) I don't know. I just don't know. But I didnt sleep all night and I feel sooooo sad.
Hah. I could have written your post. My DD19 went off to college in 2011 with a Grand Plan to major in theater. Had a small scholarship and everything. What she found was a cut throat environment, nothing like the fun theater groups she was in during high school. DD realized that she did not have the competitive drive to make it in theater. But more than that, she began to recognize that what she really loves is cooking. She finished out the year at the 4yr univ and transferred to our local community college, now majoring in culinary. She is happy and driven in this field, which makes me happy for her.

DD has done her research. She understands that working in food services requires long hours, shift work, holidays, and hard work. I'm an RN. She has seen me work under those same conditions. So its not limited to the culinary fields.

I'm proud of my DD. She really examined herself and made a good decision which I think she will not regret. I hope the OP will feel the.same way about her child.

ETA: the CC where DD goes costs less than $10,000 to complete the Associates degree course. Le Cordon Bleu costs over$100,000 for the same degree. This CC is well respected on our area. DD will probably graduate with limited student loan debt
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