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FPS at a Glance
The French Pastry School at a Glance
About The French Pastry School
Mission: The French Pastry School at City Colleges of Chicago strives to offer an innovative, effective, intensive education in which students are equipped to achieve excellence in the pastry, baking and confectionery arts.
Founding: The French Pastry School was founded by Chefs Jacquy Pfeiffer and Sébastien Canonne, M.O.F. in 1995 as a resource for intensive pastry education. The first session of the 24-week program, L’Art de la Pâtisserie, started in 1999 when the chefs moved their facilities from a studio on Grand Avenue to the fully-equipped, state of the art kitchens at the City Colleges of Chicago District Headquarters. The school added its specialized 16-week L’Art du Gâteau program to the course offerings in August 2010 and 8-week L’Art de la Boulangerie course in June 2011.
Type of School: The French Pastry School is a vocational school that teaches based on the traditional Master-Apprentice model. Our students are optimally prepared to pursue a career in pastry after learning to use the finest ingredients and equipment and receiving intensive hands-on instruction from internationally acclaimed master pastry chefs. Whether in our full-time certificate programs or a Continuing Education courses, students are personally mentored by experts in their crafts. The French Pastry School’s goal is to transmit the knowledge, commitment and passion necessary for our students to continually elevate the art of pastry.
Degrees Offered: Certificate in Baking and Pastry Arts, Certificate in Cake Decorating and Baking, Certificate in Bread Baking.
Academics for Full-Time Programs
Concentrations: Baking and Pastry Arts; Cake Baking and Decorating; Artisanal Bread Baking.
Average Class Size and Student to Faculty Ratio: There is a maximum of 18 students per classroom. There is one chef instructor and one student assistant in each classroom at all times. The chef instructors teach only their specialties allowing the students to be exposed to different instructors and their unique perspectives throughout their learning experience.
Internships/Externships: Each student of The French Pastry School’s full-time courses is encouraged to get as much experience outside of the class as possible; this can be accomplished in several ways. We recommend that our students start with stages — a job-shadow in a professional kitchen during which you will get valuable hands-on experience and exposure to the industry. We provide students with a long list of establishments and contacts to get started.
Many students opt to take externships during or after the program for further professional experience but it is not a required part of any of our courses. Assistance in organizing these opportunities is available to students who communicate their goals to the staff.
More information about our programs.
Class Size: 18 students per class, maximum.
Tuition and Financial Aid for Full-Time Program
Fees: Tuition includes the application fee, deposit, a sanitation certification course, all ingredients and equipment to use while at school as well as uniforms, toolkit and textbooks for you to keep. The main expenses outside of tuition that you would be responsible for is room and board and purchasing your own kitchen safe shoes. International students applying for student visas will be responsible for the additional application and processing fees set by the United States government.
Room/Board: The French Pastry School does not maintain residence halls for current students. There are several housing options within the city of Chicago that we recommend and offer some assistance in finding.
Environment: Located in the heart of Downtown Chicago, The French Pastry School is centrally situated with easy access to several lines of public transportation and all that the city has to offer.
Facilities: The French Pastry School maintains eight state of the art kitchens, each equipped specifically for all things baking and pastry. In addition to the teaching facilities, The French Pastry School supports a Research and Development Kitchen where our chef instructors can explore new recipes and techniques to share with their students.
Average Number of Classes per year: 40
Class Duration: Each class is between three and five days long with between 5 and 8 hours of instruction per day.
Class Cost: Each course is between $575 and $1,260 depending on class level and duration.
Course Topics: The classes are offered in a range of pastry topics, including breads, breakfast pastries, petits fours, cakes, tarts, ice creams, sorbets, and chocolate and sugar candies and showpieces.
Class Size: 16 students per class, maximum.