The education you receive in our working restaurants with the public prepares you for career success when you graduate and enter this demanding profession. NECI graduates are among the most sought after in the industry.
We have one of the lowest student-teacher ratios among post-secondary culinary schools. That translates to more individual attention and more time to create your own unique culinary style. No large lectures, only personalized attention.
You'll never feel like a number at NECI. You and your instructors will work closely together every day, forming relationships that can last a lifetime. Individualized attention and a genuine interest in your success is a cornerstone of a NECI education.
Take a look at the credit hours you can earn in a NECI degree program and it's easy to see why we have established such a strong reputation in the industry. The combination of academic and hands-on learning prepares you to compete successfully at the highest levels in culinary arts.
The freshest ingredients are the ones that have the shortest distance to travel from the farm to the table. We believe in the value of working closely with local farmers, producers, and companies. As a NECI student, you will see first-hand where the food you prepare comes from and learn about its origins.
Many students come to NECI with past industry experience. Our Advanced Placement program allows qualified candidates to earn credit for previous experience, saving you time and money.
Vermont is beautiful. Rolling hills, clear rivers and lakes, quaint New England villages, thriving college towns and cultural centers are only minutes from our campuses. Ski, snowboard, hike, bike, kayak, visit a farmers market or attend one of many concerts and festivals held throughout the year. Every season in Vermont brings with it unique experiences and activities.
NECI provides every graduate with lifetime Career Services assistance. Whether you're looking for a job, trying to fill an opening in your own restaurant, or want to discuss new culinary goals, our Career Services staff is here to help you.
Our restaurants' kitchens are our classrooms. Every day presents new learning situations that will put your education to the test. When you graduate, you will be prepared for the rigors of this demanding industry and the incredible opportunities that await you.
A well-rounded education from NECI lets you feel at home no matter in which part of the "house" you find yourself. To become the best in the business, today's professionals need to not only understand how a professional kitchen operates, they must also be familiar with front-of-house operations, catering, purchasing, management, entrepreneurship, human resources, and much more.
All of our education programs include 700-hour externships. We have relationships with resorts, restaurants, and other companies that span the globe, and we work closely with you to identify the right externship site for your skills and interests.
Students come to NECI because they are already attuned to what makes us different. That means you'll be learning alongside the best and most creative people, and one day you will be working in the industry – making a difference, too.
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!"
We have a real opportunity at NECI to create generations of chefs who believe in the importance of using ingredients that are sustainably raised, harvested, and distributed. This means fostering respect for ingredients and teaching skills that minimize waste. At NECI, sustainable practices are woven into our curriculum. Being in Vermont puts us on the front lines of exciting changes in the way we think about food."
It’s the perfect school for me—small town, small classes. I love Montpelier and I really thrive in a close community. I need the encouragement that comes from having close relationships with your teachers. The small classes also make it easier for me to ask questions without feeling like an idiot!
NECI offers the most rigorous, standards-based programs available in culinary education. Everyone in the industry understands this. We know our students by name and we expect nothing but the best from each of them. That’s why, after NECI, our students get jobs around the world in commercial and private kitchens, in corporate dining, in hotels. NECI graduates are everywhere."
I’ve worked in the food industry for thirteen years, but realized that a degree would give me better job security. I looked at Johnson and Wales, but felt that I would get a better education at NECI. At NECI, I can takes courses, for example, in Farm to Table and Sustainability that I would not receive at a larger school. I felt that that I would make better connections here. The people who work here knew my name before I even interviewed!"
NECI was the best decision I ever made, both because of the professional network it opened up for me and the skills I learned. Some of these were simple skills—others, like how to have a professional attitude and how to focus on ingredients and treat food respectfully are much larger. Some people go to culinary school to become star chefs—it takes different qualities to run a restaurant like A Single Pebble. You have to know how to create schedules that work and how to work with people. You have to have the spirit of a craftsman—to tell the story of the food you serve. It takes professionalism but also a certain passion and craziness.”
Food connects to everything in our lives. If you have a good culinary background, you will have tremendous opportunity in the food industry. I chose NECI because of the intense education, which I knew would prepare me for any path I chose.”
I wanted to be a chef. NECI gave me the training I needed, and opened a wide variety of possibilities—after NECI, you can go out and get any job in the industry you want. One of the great benefits of a NECI education was the hands-on approach to everything. You don’t just watch it, you do it! After all, it’s not easy to learn about meat fabrication in a lecture!”