Baking and Pastry Program: Head, Hands, and Heart
Day 1: We need 20 baguettes by 10 a.m.!
Day 90: Strudel (or a four-tiered wedding cake)
“I watch these students grow and gain experience and confidence in their ability to turn their visions into reality. I tell them that baking is a mindset and a set of skills. The most important qualities for any good baker are curiosity and accuracy. You can’t be afraid to try new things. And you have to follow through with accuracy and precision. It can’t hurt if you really like desserts!”
--Chef Kathleen Kessler (Chef Kat), Baking and Pastry Department Chair
Our Baking and Pastry Arts students learn how to create award-winning breads, sumptuous desserts and other baked goods in our retail outlets from the very first day of class. This work requires all five senses, intuition, attention to detail and pure passion.
Do It Fast and Do It Well
You will develop the foundational skills necessary to perform effectively in most any pastry kitchen.You will learn to create baked goods and pastries to please your customers from breakfast through dessert – muffins, croissants, pies and tarts, cupcakes and tortes, cookies, mousses, ice creams and plated desserts to name a few! At New England Culinary Institute, we believe that the best chefs are well rounded and flexible, able to step into any kitchen, anytime, anywhere and not only feel at ease, but confident. By practicing your skills in our real-time kitchens, you’ll build that confidence.
Learning from Each Other
Students at NECI rotate tasks (stations), so every day they are experiencing new challenges and mastering new techniques used by the pastry professional. Strong teamwork and support will prepare you to try new things—from simple to sublime.
Defined Outcomes of the Baking and Pastry Degree Programs:
- To provide intensive practical training and refinement of baking and pastry skills.
- To help students develop the attributes of a professional patissier or baker.
- To explore the theory of food, including food science, nutritional baking, sustainability, menu development, taste and flavor, gastronomy, artistic presentation, food and wine pairing.
- To build a foundation in the business aspects of the Baking and Pastry industry, including purchasing, safety, and cost control.
- To develop the personal and professional skills needed to succeed, including professional communication, time management, business etiquette, self-awareness, community relations, and team creation.
- To improve critical and creative thinking skills, such as problem solving, information literacy, and quantitative reasoning.
- To expand student awareness of history, art, and science.
“You can lecture and lecture, but in the end they have to feel it. I want them to know what the end result is supposed to look like, not just how to do it.”
--Chef Instructor Adrian Westrope
- Certificate in Professional Baking & Pastry —This program requires a 13-week residency and a 450-hour internship.
- Associate of Occupational Studies in Baking and Pastry —A 24- month program with two six-month, 700-hour internships.
- Bachelor of Arts in Baking and Pastry--This program requires three 6-month residencies of classroom work, intensive hands-on learning in the kitchens and food services of NECI; two 700-hour internships; and one 9-month nonresident term that includes internship and additional online course work.
For more information regarding our programs, including graduation rates and median loan debt of completers, please see NECI Program Disclosure Information.