Award Date


Degree Type

Professional Paper

Degree Name

Master of Hospitality Administration


Hotel Administration

First Committee Member

Jean Hertzmann, Chair

Number of Pages



Through an analysis of tuition data, this paper explores the difference in cost of an associate degree in culinary arts from public and private postsecondary schools. The average cost of the associate degree in culinary arts at private school is more than 500% higher than the average cost at the public schools. This disparity in cost raises a question of value. Is the degree from a private school worth more to justify the additional cost? The literature review established the use of post-graduation earnings as an accepted measure of the value of the degree. Surveys conducted by the American Culinary Federation and, as well as data collected by the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) provide salary information and level of educational attainment of members of the culinary profession. The impact of obtaining an associate degree in culinary arts on earnings cannot be determined from this data. The effect on earnings of the type of institution granting the degree also cannot be determined. As a result, a definitive answer is not available to the question of whether the additional cost incurred in obtaining the degree from a private school is justified by higher post-graduation earnings. A survey is proposed to gather education and salary data in order to determine if there is a correlation between the type of institution attended and subsequent earnings.


Cooking – Study and teaching (Associate degree); Private universities and colleges; Public universities and colleges; Trade schools; Wages


Education | Food and Beverage Management | Hospitality Administration and Management

File Format


Degree Grantor

University of Nevada, Las Vegas




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