Want To Become A Global Citizen? – Consider Career As A Chef In New Zealand

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Have you finished your year 12, O level or Form 5 in 2018 or 2019? Are you looking for a fast track rewarding career which helps you settle in New Zealand or anywhere in the world?  Are you passionate about food? Then, consider becoming a chef. Being a chef is an excellent career choice which can take you places.

New Zealand should be in the top of your list if you plan to become a chef. As hospitality is one of the major industries in New Zealand which drives the economy and chefs are in high demand.

Career As A Chef In New Zealand

For migrating to any country, there are some skills which are in demand which are accepted in a wide range. If you want to live in New Zealand permanently. Being a chef is an excellent advantage in New Zealand which many people do not realize.

It is not difficult to enter in this highly sort after career because anyone can learn the skills through courses. You can make an extensive career out of it by stepping through the ladders slowly once you enter this profession. You have an option for the open work visa in New Zealand after studying the course of a professional chef and extend the work visa and apply for a resident visa if you want to live long permanently in New Zealand.

What A Chef Does And How Much Earnings

A chef is someone who makes food in hotels, restaurants, businesses, catering, cafes, bars and rest homes. As you start the career as a chef, the first ladder is towards the Apprentice chef following the Commis chefs. Then you are the Chefs de partie leading towards Sous Chef, and at the end, it’s the head/executive chef. You start with food preparation, cooking but as you grow higher in your career you also concentrate more on budgeting, stock management, setting the price and set up the menu and people management.

As per www.career.govt.nz website job opportunities for chef are outstanding and are paid from NZ$ 34000 to NZ$ 65000, and Head/ Executive chefs are paid between $ 65000 to NZ$ 10000. Pay for chefs depends on the size, type and location of the establishment they work in, and the position they hold.

Apprentice chefs usually earn minimum wage to $37,000 a year.

Commis chefs usually earn $37,000 to $48,000.

Chefs de partie usually earn $48,000 to $58,000.

Sous chefs usually earn $55,000 to $65,000.

Head/executive chefs can earn $65,000 to $100,000.

Source:  https://www.careers.govt.nz/jobs-database/hospitality-tourism-and-recreation/hospitality/chef/

Chef In Long Term Skill Shortage List And Benefits To International Student

The chef comes under long term skill shortage list of Immigration New Zealand which means this skill is in high demand in New Zealand (http://skillshortages.immigration.govt.nz/long-term-skill-shortage-list.pdf). Thus, bonus points are given when one applies for a resident visa in New Zealand as a chef. Moreover, New Zealand employer can offer the job of a chef to any eligible foreign worker without advertising the role as it is under long term skill shortage list. Which means this makes it easy for international students to get the job of chef even after their open work visa.

Study To Become A Professional Chef

One of the best ways to become a chef in New Zealand is to get enrolled in 18 months to 24 months course of Cookery which gives you a qualification of level 5. It is primarily for international students who are aiming to come to New Zealand for immigration or stay for work. It has four semesters which get covered from 18 months to 24 months. It teaches the students starting from basic cooking techniques in the first year to advance level cooking skills to prepare more complex local and international cuisines/ dishes. These courses also cover food safety and hygiene maintenance which is one of the crucial responsibilities of a Chef. In the second-year students also gets to learn about kitchen management which will help them manage the kitchen more efficiently.

Most of the qualifications in New Zealand are applied, and the cookery course is not an exception. The cookery courses are more practical than theory. Majority of classes are held in the training kitchen.  So, for someone who likes making food and prefers to do some hand on the course rather than sitting in a typical classroom setting and listen to the lecturer, this could be the best choice.

Chef Career is not For Everyone

The career as a chef is enriching and gives fantastic opportunities in New Zealand and globally to work and settle permanently. However, it is not for everyone. Do not get in this career just looking only at rewards unless you are passionate about food and cooking. Being a chef involves a lot of hard work. A chef usually works late nights and most of the weekends especially in the early days of their career. If you are one of the weekend party animals, maybe this is not the career you would like to pursue. Unless you are really into the food, you would not be able to make these sacrifices and become a successful chef.

Requirement To Enroll In Chef Course In New Zealand

There are number Institutes in New Zealand who offers chef courses from 18 months to 24 Months. To enroll in these programs, the students need to have a high school certificate / O level/ Form 5 or equivalent qualification. For English proficiency IELTS 5.5 (academic) as an overall score, and for all the bands, it should be at least 5 band or equivalent score in PTE test. Any previous experience is not required to enroll in the course. However, we would recommend some basic cooking knowledge or at least a keen interest in cooking to make this excellent career choice.

Immigration Benefits For International Students

Currently, International students studying two-year chef course in New Zealand are eligible to get a two-year post-study open work visa (if study outside Auckland) and one-year post-study open work visa if study in Auckland.

We can help you with an assessment if this career choice is suitable for you and help you from finding a suitable education provider in New Zealand, post study work visa and to residency visa in New Zealand.

Please contact us with your CV or academic details at services@immigrationlawadvice.co.nz

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    Vinay Sood

    Vinay Sood



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