VIU culinary students plate dishes

Certificate Program Details, Costs, and Admission Requirements

  • Program Length
    1 Year
  • Credential
    Certificate
  • Options
    Apprenticeship, Co-op
  • Location Offered
    Cowichan, Nanaimo

Cook up a five-star career in the culinary arts

Do you want a career creating delicious food that brings people together? With a Culinary Arts certificate, you can accelerate your journey to the top tiers of the culinary world. 

At VIU you learn in a modern, professional kitchen, training with top chefs who are dedicated to your success. You’ll also receive sought-after training in Japanese cooking. And you have the option to take part in field school in France, Italy or Belize. 

Gain real-world experience

We offer more hands-on experience than many other culinary schools. You gain experience in our professional kitchens, learning the high-volume cooking skills employers look for. And you practice new skills frequently to ensure you retain what you’ve learned.

The program also includes a 10-week paid work-experience placement. You earn hours toward Red Seal endorsement and put your new skills to the test.

Culinary career options

A culinary career can take you all around the world. Well-trained chefs and cooks are in high demand everywhere. There are career options that take you out of the kitchen too. You can be a food critic, food stylist or a sales rep in the restaurant industry.

Program Overview

The Culinary Institute of Vancouver Island (CIVI), at VIU provides students with the options of a Certificate (one year), and a Diploma (two years) program, in culinary training and management skills. The Certificate program provides students with foundational culinary training and management skills, giving them the leading edge to advancement in the culinary profession.

Upon entering the Culinary Arts Certificate program, students are registered as apprentices with SkilledTradesBC, allowing them to accrue apprentice hours while they complete their technical training. At the end of the program, students participate in a paid coop work placement, gaining industry work experience and additional apprentice hours.

As a part of the program, students study Japanese cuisine and obtain a Bronze Certification in Japanese Cooking Skills through the CIVI’s affiliation with the Government of Japan. The Bronze Certificate is recognized world-wide and is a valuable addition to our graduates’ resumes.

The Culinary Arts Certificate consists of the 28-week Professional Cook 1 (PC1), and the 14- week Professional Cook 2 (PC2) and a ten week paid co-op work placement. Students begin by spending three weeks in our state of the art food lab, focusing on learning basic cooking skills and good culinary habits without production pressure. They then move to the main kitchen, rotating through five separate sections. Students will prepare breakfast, vegetables, starches, and proteins, as well as study cold kitchen, pastry, and meat cutting. Food produced by the students will be served in the VIU cafeterias, VIU Discovery Room, and other affiliated restaurants.

Students who successfully complete the Culinary Arts Certificate program can apply for admission to Year 2 of the Culinary Management Diploma program, however there are additional high school courses required for admission.

Culinary Arts Certificate

Professional Cook 1 (28-weeks)

Credits

Professional Cook 2 (14-weeks) 
Co-op Component 
COOK 100T - (Orientation and Evaluation)3.0
COOK 102T - (Breakfast and Meat Cutting - Theory & Practical)3.5
COOK 104T - (Garde-Manger, Vegetables and Starches 1 - Theory & Practical)3.5
COOK 108T - (Stocks, Soups, Protein Cookery 1 - Theory & Practical)3.5
COOK 112T - (A la Carte 1 - Theory & Practical)3.0
COOK 119T - (Pastries and Desserts 1 - Theory & Practical)3.5
COOK 110T - (Meat Cutting 2)1.5
COOK 115T - (A la Carte 2 - Theory & Practical)3.5
COOK 117T - (Garde-Manger, Vegetables and Starches 2 - Theory & Practical)3.5
COOK 106T - (Pastries and Desserts 2 - Theory & Practical)1.5
COOK 121 - (Preparation for Co-operative Placement 1)1
COOK 122 - (Co-operative Education Placement 1)9

Total Credits

40

Culinary students are in demand for a wide variety of employment opportunities. All students in the Culinary Arts Certificate program participate in a Co-op paid work practicum. Employers regularly contact VIU's chef instructors when employment opportunities arise. See employer testimonials. We are proud of the achievements of our grads and alumni.

See the Departmental web site for more information: VIU Culinary Programs website.

Domestic Fees | International Fees

Domestic Fees

Tuition and Other Mandatory Student Fees

When applying to the program, applicants will be charged a non-refundable application fee.

When applying to graduate, students will be charged a non-refundable graduation and alumni fee.

Some courses have additional fees to pay for extraordinary class–related expenses.

Fees - Culinary Arts Certificate (includes PC1, PC2, and Co-op) Nanaimo Campus Amount
Tuition (11 months x $499.20 per month + 1 academic credit x $166.40) 5,657.60
Lab Fee - Level One 615.58
Lab Fee - Level Two 280.37
Student Activity fee (4% of tuition, co-op and lab fee) 279.83
Student Services fee (4.417% of tuition) 249.90
VIU Students' Union fee (14 months x $27.60 per month) 386.40
Co-operative Placement ($722.68 per term) 722.68
Health and Dental Plan fee ($265.00 per year) 265.00
Notes

* The Professional Cook 2 training is for students who have already completed the Professional Cook 1 certificate elsewhere and are applying to the Nanaimo campus to complete the Culinary Arts Certificate.

** This fee is not included in the regular culinary arts program fees.

Additional fees apply for textbooks, supplies, laundry expenses, etc. There are also fees of approximately $875 for tools and knives.

The VIUSU Health and Dental Plan fee is assessed for all students enrolled in 6 credits or more per term, or in Trades/Vocational programs of 5 months or longer.  

All fees are subject to change without prior notice and are expected to increase by 2% each year on April 1.


International Fees

Tuition and Other Mandatory Student Fees

When applying to the program, applicants will be charged a non-refundable application fee.

When applying to graduate, students will be charged a non-refundable graduation and alumni fee.

Some courses have additional fees to pay for extraordinary class–related expenses.

Fees - Culinary Arts Certificate (includes PC1, PC2, and Co-op) Nanaimo Campus Amount
Tuition (11 months x $2399.31 + 1 academic credit x $799.77) 27,192.18
Lab Fee - Level One 615.58
Lab Fee - Level Two 280.37
Ancillary Fee (3 semesters x $463.40 per semester) 1,390.20
VIU Students' Union fee (14 months x $27.60 per month) 386.40
Co-operative Placement ($2399.31 per term) 2,399.31
Health and Dental Plan fee ($265.00 per year) 265.00
Notes

* The Professional Cook 2 training is for students who have already completed the Professional Cook 1 certificate elsewhere and are applying to the Nanaimo campus to complete the Culinary Arts Certificate.

** This fee is not included in the regular culinary arts program fees.

Additional fees apply for textbooks, supplies, laundry expenses, etc. There are also fees of approximately $875 for tools and knives.

The VIUSU Health and Dental Plan fee is assessed for all students enrolled in 6 credits or more per term, or in Trades/Vocational programs of 5 months or longer.  

All fees are subject to change without prior notice and are expected to increase by 2% each year on April 1.

Domestic (Canadian)

Program Start Date Accepting Applications Campus Options

International

Program Start Date Accepting Applications Campus Options
VIU Culinary Student, Sarah leDuc

Sarah Leduc

“The combination of culinary specialties was very important to me – I have never held a culinary position where I have stayed in one section of the kitchen and believe it is important to stay versatile.”

Read more about Sarah's experience