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Art Institutes

Baking & Pastry

I want to make my passion my career.

It’s hard to find someone who doesn’t like dessert. It’s not easy to find someone who has the talent, passion, and imagination to turn desserts into works of art. This is serious stuff—especially in a culinary industry that grows more competitive and demanding every day. It’s why restaurants often call on the creativity of pastry chefs and bakers to help give them an edge. If you’re ready to put your talents to the test, the place to start is our Baking & Pastry School. While you’ll focus on the pastry arts, you’ll get a well-rounded education—from plating a dessert to preparing confections to managing a commercial kitchen. You’ll be surrounded and inspired by other talented, creatively driven students. And you’ll be pushed, challenged, and, above all else, supported by experienced faculty* who want to help you find your place in the world.

*Credentials and experience levels vary by faculty and instructors.

Classroom Experience

I can't wait to show what I can do.

There aren’t many careers out there that let you express your own individual style and creativity while giving you the instant gratification of seeing consumers enjoying your work. That means you’ll need to compete for your place in the real world. And that’s the driving force behind Baking & Pastry. You’ll work on fundamental pastry and bread-baking techniques, all-purpose baking, desserts, cake decoration, and pastry arts. You’ll apply your skills to chocolate, confections, and centerpieces, as well as classical, glazed, iced, molded, cream-filled, wedding and display cakes. You’ll have the opportunity to learn to mix, shape and bake hand-crafted breads. And we’ll make sure you’re up to date on trends across the entire culinary industry, including international flavors. You’ll have the opportunity to learn critical thinking and business basics, including the principles of ordering food, equipment, and supplies. See our gainful employment pages for possible careers that match the program that interests you.

Meet our Alumni

  • Rhonda Bell

    Rhonda Bell

    Digital Photography , 2014

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    Rhonda Bell
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  • The Art Institute of Philadelphia alumni Ted Sheppard

    Ted Sheppard

    Fashion Marketing & Management , 1994

    [It helped me] to reach all of my dreams and also helped make them come true.

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    Ted Sheppard

    Ted Sheppard’s résumé reads like a who’s who in the fashion world. He’s worked at Lord & Taylor, Kenneth Cole, Lacoste USA, Saks 5th Avenue, and now DKNY Donna Karan, where he creates stunning, eye-catching visual merchandising at stores across the country. Ted’s passion for the arts began in childhood and continued throughout his education. While studying Fashion Marketing at The Art Institute of Philadelphia, Ted frequently traveled to attend fashion shows for Karl Lagerfeld and Design Industries Foundation Fighting AIDS (DIFFA).

    Immediately following graduation, Ted freelanced at Strawbridge & Clothier, then moved on to Lord & Taylor, working in window design. His next career step took him to Kenneth Cole, where he worked on shows for New York’s Fashion Week before moving into a more media-centered position—enabling him to coordinate production crews for television programs “Sex and the City” and “What Not to Wear.” Ted next moved to Lacoste USA, overseeing visual merchandising at boutiques across five states. His final step before achieving his position at Donna Karan was working at Saks 5th Avenue in NYC, coordinating special events and personal appearances at the store for fashion legends including Michael Kors and Giorgio Armani. In addition to his fashion career, Ted collaborates on art projects with Jerry Torre, a star in the film “Grey Gardens.”

    Ted, who in 1994 earned an Associate in Specialized Technology degree in Fashion Marketing from The Art Institute of Philadelphia, says that his education provided a solid foundation for the real world. “[It helped me] to reach all of my dreams and also helped make them come true.”

    See ge.artinstitutes.edu/programoffering/549 for program duration, tuition, fees and other costs, median debt, salary data, alumni success, and other important info.

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What Will I Study?

Baking_Pastry

This is where I belong.

The Baking & Pastry School curriculum is focused on helping you grow as both an artist and a technician. Working in professional kitchens, you’ll explore both theory and practice through courses that take you from the fundamentals to the world cuisines that are emerging in popularity. You'll study:

  • Ingredients
  • Weight & Measures
  • Sanitation & Safety
  • Dessert Plating and Presentation
  • Artisan Breads
  • Baking Production
  • European Cakes and Tortes
  • Advanced Patisserie
  • Purchasing
  • Nutrition Science
  • Management, Supervision and Career Development

I'm looking for my proving ground.

At The Art Institutes system of schools, creativity is our core, our calling, our culture. Our Baking & Pastry degree programs are built on that creative foundation. It’s also built on our knowledge that a creative career is not for the faint of heart. Because it’s tough out there, it’s tough in here. But along with that toughness comes all the support you’ll need at every step along the way. That’s why we provide the mentoring and real-world experience to help you prevail, with faculty* who’ve worked in the field, along with opportunities to learn that go far beyond our kitchens. You’ll be encouraged and expected to be bold. To take risks. To push yourself and the people around you. It won’t be easy. In fact, it’ll be the hardest thing you’ll ever love.

*Credentials and experience levels vary by faculty and instructors.

 

Meet our Faculty

  • Chef Instructor Betsy Futryk

    Betsy Futryk

    Culinary Management

    "There's always someone else working their way up, looking to be the best. Never assume you're good enough."

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    Betsy Futryk

    Was there a defining moment when you knew you were destined to become a creative professional?

    When I was working as a sous chef training new line cooks, one of them told me how much they appreciated my efforts to inspire new cooks to grow. That’s when I realized that I loved helping others shine.

    How do you weave your professional background into the classroom experience?

    To me, it’s very important to have a classroom that reflects the standards of the industry. I try to blend my experiences—both my accomplishments and, just as importantly, my mistakes—into my lessons.

    What class assignment exemplifies your approach to teaching and mentoring?

    I feel it’s my job to emphasize industry standards and traditional methods, without restricting creativity. I’ve found that, for the creative mind, the biggest obstacle is usually one’s self.

    What’s the most important thing you impart to students to help them succeed in class and the real world?

    There’s always someone else working their way up, looking to be the best. Never assume you’re good enough.

    What’s the most critical advice you would offer any student embarking on a creative career?

    Trends change constantly, but methods are standard. The key to success is balancing the two.

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  • Associate Professor Craig Do

    Craig Dovidio

    Media Arts & Animation

    "This is your training ground for life: make the most of it."

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    Craig Dovidio

    Was there a defining moment when you knew you were destined to become a creative professional?

    I made my first film when I was 12 years old. I realized then that I was creative, and I knew I needed to continue to create. I thank my father for helping me shoot for eight hours straight. He cared enough to push me when I was just learning to walk the creative path.

    How do you weave your professional background into the classroom experience?

    I bring 25,000 hours of on-location experience into the classroom, tying every bolt and cable to how it's really used in the industry. My students absolutely know I'm there to tell them the truth, and that I share the methods to do it right. I’ve been there, I’ve bought the tee shirt and the mug, and I know how to make it work. I'm their biggest cheerleader.

    How would you describe your approach to teaching and mentoring?

    All of my class assignments are based on real-world application. That's why I work regularly with the internship and career services departments. For example, on a student video production for an agency, I worked with my students to ensure they delivered the highest quality product—and that they have the best material for their portfolios. In many cases, I’ll go out with the students to meet the agency, help create the script, be present on shoots, and help edit the final video. My goal is create the most employable graduate possible.

    How does collaboration contribute to students’ success—particularly when students from various programs work together?

    Teamwork among students from different departments is a very important part of the success of any project. We reach out often, and always in a big way. My students work with Graphic Design students for graphics, Media Arts & Animation students for customized animations, and Audio Production students for audio recordings and editing.

    What’s the most important thing you impart to students to help them succeed in class and the real world?

    I stress that this experience is the start of their professional life. Every moment in class is a percentage of the accumulated knowledge they’ll take with them to their profession. To succeed, you must first acknowledge that this is your training ground for life: make the most of it.

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  • Emil Dejohn

    Emil DeJohn

    Fashion Design

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    Emil DeJohn
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  • Fashion Marketing, Graphic Design, and Advertising Instructor Kirk Widra

    Kirk Widra

    Fashion Marketing & Management

    "There's no such thing as "self-made" success. It's the result of equal parts ambition, courage, and those who help you along the way."

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    Kirk Widra

    Was there a defining moment when you knew you were destined to become a creative professional?

    My mother was a businesswoman. After I’d earned a Graphic Design degree and was looking for a job, she suggested that I see myself as someone who sells art and design as a service. She spent several weeks teaching me the ins and outs of the business world. After that, I felt empowered on job interviews and I’ve never looked back.

    How do you weave your professional background into the classroom experience?

    I simply share my experiences—both good and bad—with my students as learning tools and inspiration. I make sure I let them know that to be successful, you have to be wiling to make mistakes.

    How does collaboration contribute to students’ success?

    Those of us who are agents of change recognize that design and the arts are critical resources for transforming society and solving complex problems. We want to position ourselves at the center of public life as artists, scholars, designers, and educators. Collaboration is a natural extension of that belief.

    What’s the most important thing you impart to students to help them succeed in class and the real world?

    There’s no such thing as “self-made" success. It’s the result of equal parts ambition, courage, and those who help you along the way.

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  • Media Arts & Animation and Game Art & Design Instructor Tim Wetzel

    Tim Wetzel

    Media Arts & Animation

    "My most satisfying moments are when students express that 'Aha!' moment—and then run with it and do amazing work."

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    Tim Wetzel

    Was there a defining moment when you knew you were destined to become a creative professional?

    During a self-taught apprenticeship in 3D modeling and animation, I learned to combine art with my interest in computers and design. That was an eye-opening experience. To be honest, I was having so much fun, and it took me a couple of years to think of it as a way to make a living. Even today, much of the work I do feels more like play.

    How do you weave your professional background into the classroom experience?

    I teach working pipelines, time management, and industry standards, using my professional experiences as classroom examples. I present problems that commonly come up, as well as how client interactions affect design and other important decisions.

    What class assignment exemplifies your approach to teaching and mentoring?


    I challenge students to challenge themselves to work harder. And that’s what they do in my character project. It’s a series of assignments that follow the 3D character pipeline. Students create a model from reference, then UV map and texture their character using various industry methods. Creating a rig, skinning, and morph targets help students dynamically pose a character for a final presentation. Throughout the project, students learn how the process is also used for animation and 3D games.

    How does collaboration contribute to students’ success—particularly when students from various programs work together?

    When students work together on a common goal, they learn to work to their own strengths and reach out to others for help in areas where they’re not as strong. They pick up valuable interpersonal tools and management skills. And when they work with student from other programs, they develop an appreciation and understanding for those disciplines.

    What’s the most important thing you impart to students to help them succeed in class and the real world?

    I urge them to never stop learning, and always have a strong work ethic. I stress the importance of time management, promptness, and hard work in creating great artwork and animation. And I encourage them to accept critique with an open mind.

    Anything else you’d like to share?

    My most satisfying moments are when students express that "Aha!" moment—and then run with it and do amazing work. That’s when I know they’ve taken what I’ve taught them and made it their own.

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The Art Institute of San Antonio, a branch of The Art Institute of Houston alumni Sommer Bostick Working on game based training for the military has exposed me to things I never would be doing when I started at [The Art Institute of San Antonio]. Sommer Bostick
Media Arts & Animation, The Art Institute of San Antonio, a branch of The Art Institute of Houston, 2014