Culinary Fundamentals CSC
Preparing Food

Culinary Fundamentals

Career Studies Certificate

PURPOSE: The Culinary Fundamentals program is intended to develop knowledge and skills in the modern and classical kitchen through techniques, products, and industry relation. The curriculum provides technical education in basic to intermediate skill development in sanitation, the kitchen, cooking, terminology, identification, communication, and computer systems.  This credential leads to entry-level employment in a variety of culinary and retail career paths.

OCCUPATIONAL OBJECTIVES: The Culinary Fundamentals Career Studies Certificate prepares graduates to enter the following positions: Prep Cook, Station Cook, Catering, Line Cook and Pastry Assistants.

ADMISSION REQUIREMENTS: General college curricular admission

PROGRAM NOTES: The Culinary Fundamentals Career Studies Certificate requires that students have the following competencies: (1) competency in Math Essentials MTE 1-2 as demonstrated through the placement and diagnostic tests or by satisfactorily completing the required MTE units, or equivalent, and (2) competencies in reading and writing as demonstrated by placement in ENG 111 or placement in co-requisites ENG 111 and EDE 11 or completion of a college-level composition course. Students needing to complete developmental studies courses, below the minimum levels stated, in English or Mathematics, must complete those courses prior to beginning HRI courses. 

Faculty provide advising to enhance student success. All students wishing to enroll in Culinary Fundamentals CSC must attend an advising session. Once enrolled, students must meet with their advisor every semester to review their scheduling strategy and status toward graduation. Information about advising and enrolling in classes is available at the following link: .

Students who earn a final grade lower than "C" in any HRI or major-related course, as identified by the program, must obtain permission from their advisor to continue the major in Culinary Fundamentals CSC. Students will be required to repeat courses in their major when grades lower than "C" are earned. Exceptions must be reviewed and approved in writing by the program head.

The competency-based nature of the curriculum allows students with previous educational studies or training experience to be evaluated for advanced standing called ABLE. Students who believe they are eligible for such consideration are required to meet with their advisor to discuss eligibility.  If the advisor determines this option may apply, the student must meet with the program head for full evaluation and possible advanced standing to gain access to the process and materials required for submission and evaluation.

The recommended sequence can be viewed at

COMPUTER COMPETENCY REQUIREMENT: Students in this program will meet the college's computer competency requirement by successfully completing HRI 159

REQUIRED UNIFORMS AND TOOL KITS: Students enrolled in HRI courses must wear an approved uniform and possess an approved tool kit for HRI courses. Specifications may be obtained at or from the program head.  All required items are available through the campus bookstore, and financial aid may be used to assist with obtaining these items. 

FINANCIAL REQUIREMENTS:  In addition to the regular college tuition and fees, the Culinary Arts AAS degree and specializations require the following: 

Approved uniform items:  chef jacket, chef pants, slip resistant black kitchen safety shoes, hat, apron

$160.00 +/-

Supplies:  medium black Sharpie marker, yellow highlighter, basic pocket calculator, pocket size notebook

$25.00 +/-

Textbooks, MyLab products, and other supplies

$800.00 +/-

Approved tool kit

$350.00 +/-

Specialization - specific items

See program head

These costs are approximate, are subject to change without notice, and do not cover transportation costs. 

DIETARY EXCEPTION POLICY:  While enrolled and participating in the Culinary Arts program, especially laboratories, students will come into contact with various ingredients, some of which are familiar to them and many that are not.  The Culinary Arts AAS is aligned with industry standards and expectations, which require students to be industry-ready upon completion of the program.  The industry expects taste development; therefore, a majority of the program revolves around "tasting as you go" as a standard of higher-level cooking, comprehension, and assessment.  Without directly participating in tasting, the chances of a successful dish and grade are highly compromised.  The following areas address these potential concerns:

TASTING - Part of the educational portion of the program is exposure to new ingredients, products, and flavor pairings. During required classes, students will participate in tasting activities of foods that include safe to eat raw and fresh ingredients; cooked ingredients; and fresh, uncooked, and cooked dishes.  Students will be expected to taste all items, except those that are documented on file as food restrictions. The process of discerning tastes, flavors, seasonings, and "dish needs" is included as part of the grading rubric. Students who do not participate in tasting activities will have their grade adjusted accordingly.

ALLERGIES - The college is committed to student safety. Students with allergy concerns need to provide documentation of food allergies from their doctor to be registered and on file with the Office of Student Accommodations, at which time the student will be provided an accepted accommodations form for presentation to every instructor for each related course, each semester.  Students need to provide in written form the process for assisting them if an issue arises related to this.  It is the student's responsibility to assure these documents are on file with the Office of Student Accommodations and that they are shared with faculty prior to being needed.  In the event that a student opts out of a tasting activity, the instructor will offer a relevant alternative written assignment for the student to complete as a graded alternative to the objectionable tasting activity. 

RELIGION AND RELIGIOUS PRACTICES - Whereas Reynolds accepts students of all faiths, certain programs contain learning activities that may not align with specific religions or religious practices. The Culinary Arts AAS and its specializations are examples of these programs.  Students may choose not to participate in tasting activities if a specific item conflicts with their religious beliefs; however, all efforts should be made to participate within reason. In the event that a student opts out of a tasting activity, the instructor will offer a relevant alternative written assignment for the student to complete as a graded alternative to the objectionable tasting activity. A second option, referred to as the "Taste and Spit Method," is also available. Tasting and subsequent spitting allow the student to experience the sensory attributes of the food without actually consuming the food.  This option satisfies the intended learning benefits of tasting and would not require the completion of the alternative written assignment. During the first week of classes, students need to inform faculty in written form of any religious restrictions. 

RESTRICTIVE AND MEDICAL DIETS - Documented accommodations through the Office of Accommodations are intended to provide a safe environment for students.  Only documented restrictions that provide students a reasonable ability to complete the course and program objectives may be accommodated.  It is possible that not all requested accommodations will be granted through the Office of Student Accommodations, as those that are provided may still require students to complete tasks, recipes, and formulas that work with the product in question as part of comprehensive learning.  As an example, a student with Celiac's Disease who opts out of a tasting activity will be offered a relevant alternative written assignment as a graded alternative to the objectionable tasting activity. 

LIFESTYLE AND ELECTIVE DIETS - Whereas the choice of following a lifestyle or elective diet is respected, there are instances where they may not be accommodated within this program. These diets include, but are not limited to, Vegan, Raw Only, Vegetarian, Lacto-Ovo, Lacto, Ovo, Pollotarian, Pescatarian, and Flexitarian. Students may choose not to participate in certain tasting activities; however, their grade will be reflective of these choices.  Students may choose an option referred to as the "Taste and Spit Method."  Tasting and subsequent spitting allow the student to experience the sensory attributes of the food without actually consuming the food.  Students who choose to taste may spit out the product after assessing the characteristics related to the educational objectives. 

Students with a particular concern or question should reach out directly to the program head or the Office of Student Accommodations.

TECHNICAL STANDARDS: It is understood that any student who is otherwise qualified may be able to use reasonable accommodations in order to meet program standards that are necessary for employment in the culinary industry. Students with an identified disability should contact the Office of Student Accommodations in order to receive available, reasonable accommodations. Students in the Culinary Arts program must have the ability to perform sufficiently kitchen, internship, externship, dining room, market cafe, laboratory, and classroom activities and procedures.  A list of essential functions, educational and industry standards, and related examples is provided at

GAINFUL EMPLOYMENT DISCLOSURE INFORMATION: Please see to access gainful employment disclosure information for this program. 

 Students must take courses in order of roadmap; sequence subject to scheduling and full enrollment.






SDV 1011 Orientation to Culinary and Pastry Arts 1


HRI 1151 Food Service Managers Sanitation Certification 1


HRI 1061 Principles of Culinary Arts I 3


HRI 1191 Applied Nutrition for Food Service 2


HRI 1901,2


SPA 107

Coordinated Internship in Major


Spanish Communications for the Hospitality Industry



HRI 1361 Storeroom Operations and Inventory Management 1


HRI 2181 Fruit, Vegetable, and Starch Preparation 3


HRI 1591 Introduction to Hospitality Industry Computer Systems 3


______1,3 Approved Specialization Elective 3


ENG 111 College Composition I 3


Culinary Fundamentals Career Studies Certificate 21


1 Students enrolled in HRI majors will be permitted into those classes only when wearing approved uniforms. Specifications may be obtained at or from program faculty and advisors.

2 HRI 190 internship is the required course for completion, unless an accommodation is provided in writing from the program head, verifying that the student has demonstrable, verifiable, industry-related experience; in these select cases SPA 107 has been selected as the course substitute.

Approved Specialization Elective is determined from the list below based on the AAS major a student has declared.

            Culinary Arts Approved Specialization Elective

                 - HRI 128 – Principles of Baking

            Pastry Arts Approved Specialization Elective

                 - HRI 128 – Principles of Baking

            Culinary Management Approved Specialization Elective

                 - HRI 219 – Stock, Soup & Sauce Preparation


Name Program Email Phone
Jesse Miller Culinary Arts 804/523-5070
Darren Rounds Culinary Arts 804/523-5781


Common Job Titles1: Banquet Chef; Certified Executive Chef (CEC); Chef; Chef, Instructor; Cook; Corporate Executive Chef; Executive Chef (Ex Chef); Executive Sous Chef; Head Cook; Line Cook

Labor Market Statistics (Richmond, MSA)

Projected Employment (2029): 594

Current Wage Range (Entry - Experienced): $42,000 - $66,300

Common Job Titles1: Titles not available for this occupation.

Labor Market Statistics (Richmond, MSA)

Projected Employment (2029): 93

Current Wage Range (Entry - Experienced): $18,300 - $31,400

Common Job Titles1: Cook; Cook (Dinner); Cook (Elementary School); Dietary Cook; Dinner Cook; First Cook; Food Service Specialist; Food and Nutrition Services Assistant; Lead Cook; School Cook

Labor Market Statistics (Richmond, MSA)

Projected Employment (2029): 1,639

Current Wage Range (Entry - Experienced): $21,800 - $32,400

Common Job Titles1: Appetizer Preparer; Back Line Cook; Banquet Cook; Breakfast Cook; Broil Cook; Cook; Fry Cook; Grill Cook; Line Cook; Prep Cook (Preparation Cook)

Labor Market Statistics (Richmond, MSA)

Projected Employment (2029): 6,633

Current Wage Range (Entry - Experienced): $18,700 - $27,500

Bright Outlook Bright Outlook occupations are expected to have rapid growth over the next 10-years (employment increase of 10% or more in the Richmond, MSA over the period of 2019-2029) or are expected to have a high demand (projected to have 750 or more job openings in the Richmond, MSA over the period of 2019-2029).

1 This program may prepare you for one or more of the listed jobs; however, graduates may not be qualified for all of the jobs listed in this section.

Reynolds Community College makes every attempt to provide students with the best, most accurate information possible. The data was sourced from external agencies (O*NET and JobsEQ) on January 29, 2020.