Cook - Apprenticeship

Cook - Apprenticeship

Two 15-week training sessions
Certificate of Apprenticeship
Niagara-on-the-Lake Campus
Start Date: September or January

Admission Requirements

  • Ontario Secondary School Diploma, or Grade 12 equivalency, AND
  • Employment in the trade

About the Apprenticeship

Career Opportunities

Cooking requires excellent organizational skills, and the ability to be adaptable to quickly changing needs in a fast paced environment. Cooks have to be extremely focused and attentive to detail. Canada’s hospitality industry is experiencing rapid growth and needs qualified workers who exhibit these characteristics. Prospects for satisfying employment and career advancement in the food service industry have never been better.

Upon completion of your cook apprenticeship you may seek provincial certification and pursue employment in diverse settings including restaurants, hotels, hospitals, clubs, central food commissaries, correctional institutions, catering establishments, private homes and educational institutions. Cooks can also be found working in the transportation industry aboard ships, trains or airplanes and at construction and isolated camps.

Potential jobs include:

  • Cook
  • Chef de cuisine
  • Chef de partie
  • Research and development cook
  • Food service administrators and coordinators
  • Kitchen manager
  • Banquet manager
  • Caterer
  • Sous chef
  • Baker

The NC Difference

  • Canadian Food and Wine InstituteThe Canadian Food and Wine Institute at Niagara College possesses an outstanding reputation with graduates, employers and industry partners
  • Niagara Wine Country has a thriving hospitality industry
  • A full-service, on-campus, open-to-the-public dining room complements the training
  • Students enjoy an unrivalled learning environment, excellent facilities and highly qualified chef faculty
  • Students gain additional experience and exposure by working on many special functions held on and off the campus each year
  • Apprentices complete 700 hrs of college instruction and approximately 3 years of on-the-job training as paid trainees
  • Outstanding levels of student satisfaction
  • Many apprentices and graduates win Skills Canada Awards at the provincial, national and international levels
  • Student support system which includes counselling and financial aid
  • More than 3 decades of apprenticeship in-school training experience


Overall I was honored to have this opportunity. I definitely respect and admire all of the PK Chefs as well as the other Chefs at the college I have had the pleasure of working with over the last year. I have learned so much and grown both as a Cook and a person. Which makes me proud to say that I studied and worked in the Production Kitchen. I feel that this program is incredibly valuable for young up and coming Chefs. I hope that it will continue, so the generations of Cooks after me will be able to take advantage of all the great opportunity and wealth of knowledge it provides.Rob Tapp, graduate

Last year I graduated from the Cook Level 2 program at Niagara College. Due to my achievements in school and a strong work ethic I was offered a position at the college working in the Production Kitchen as a Third level Commis. An opportunity I am glad I took!

The Chefs exemplified what I believe are the qualities that make a great Chef. They were always eager to help us, and constantly encouraged us. No question was ever left unanswered. They always pushed us to research things, be it product or techniques, and drove us to always raise the bar. They would let us make mistakes but always help us to fix them, and then take the time to explain where we had gone wrong. All of the Chefs lead by example, always showing patience and understanding. Constantly doing their best to instill not only a strong work ethic in us but healthy humanitarian qualities as well. They always applied good management techniques and helped us to do the same.

Niagara College definitely put me on a track of professionalism. I obtained the formal training I needed to take something that interested me and turn it into a rewarding career.

Todd Clarmo, Cook - Apprenticeship graduate
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Term One (2016 Winter)
Course CodeCourse NameUnits
BAKG1150Professional Baking Fundamentals3
CAPL1199Computer Applications3
CULN1126Basic Culinary Techniques3
CULN1121Introduction to Food Principles3
CULN1130Health and Nutrition2
CULN1138Practical Cooking and Garde Manger3
CULN1322Cuisine a La Carte I1
Term Two (2017 Winter)
Course CodeCourse NameUnits
BAKG1220Modern Pastry Craft3
COMM1101Language and Communications3
CULN1230Applied Culinary Principles3
CULN1221Understanding Quality Ingredients3
CULN1246Food Composition and Plating Techniques3
CULN1320Culinary Cost Control3
CULN1422Cuisine a La Carte II1


  • Apprenticeship programs are also available for the trade of Baker with advanced training in Patissier.
  • Non-apprentices may also apply to Niagara College for the related academic training as fee-paying students.

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Why Consider Apprenticeship?

  • The province is facing a large shortage of skilled labour
  • A certified journeyperson earns a good wage
  • Approximately 18 per cent of skilled workers are self-employed
  • There is, and will continue to be, a demand for highly qualified, highly skilled tradespeople
  • Majority of tuition for the in-school training is paid for by the Ministry of Training, Colleges and Universities
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Take a Campus Tour

Take a guided tour of our campus(es)! Register online or book over the phone:

Welland: 905-735-2211, ext. 7559
905-641-2252, ext. 4208

Can't make it to the campus?

No problem! Take our Virtual Tour and experience a guided walk-through from the comfort of your own home.

How to Apply for an Apprenticeship

  1. Individuals interested in apprenticeship training need to find a training sponsor or employer willing to engage in apprenticeship training.
  2. Once arranged, contact apprenticeship staff at your local Employment Ontario office.
  3. An employment and training consultant will arrange a meeting at the workplace to assess the ability of the training sponsor or employer to train and assess the person, prepare the training agreement or contract, and initiate the training.
  4. Once you have received your "Offer of Classroom Training Letter" from the Ministry of Training, Colleges and Universities, you must complete the registration process by contacting Niagara College’s registrars Office. Niagara College Apprenticeship Information Line Phone: 905-735-2211, ext. 7552

For more information, contact:

Apprenticeship Client Services
Ministry of Training, Colleges and Universities
Workplace Training Branch
301 St. Paul Street, 9th Floor
St. Catharines, ON L2R 7R4

Phone: 905 704-2991, Fax: 905 704-2985

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