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Career and Education Opportunities for Counter Clerks in Naperville, Illinois

There are many career and education opportunities for counter clerks in the Naperville, Illinois area. There are currently 20,930 jobs for counter clerks in Illinois and this is projected to grow by 16% to about 24,210 jobs by 2016. This is better than the national trend for counter clerks, which sees this job pool growing by about 9.3% over the next eight years. Counter clerks generally serve food to diners at counter or from a steam table.

Counter clerks earn approximately $8 per hour or $16,760 yearly on average in Illinois. Nationally they average about $8 per hour or $17,520 yearly. Incomes for counter clerks are not quite as good as in the overall category of Service in Illinois, and not quite as good as the overall Service category nationally. Jobs in this field include: food service assistant, cafe worker, and candy counter clerk.

There are 166 schools of higher education in the Naperville area, including one within twenty-five miles of Naperville where you can get a degree to start your career as a counter clerk. Given that the most common education level for counter clerks is a high school diploma or GED, you can expect to spend only a short time training to become a counter clerk if you already have a high school diploma.


Counter Clerk video from the State of New Jersey Dept. of Labor and Workforce Development

In general, counter clerks serve food to diners at counter or from a steam table.

Every day, counter clerks are expected to be able to listen to and understand others in meetings. They need to understand what others are saying to them even in a noisy environment. It is also important that they speak clearly.

It is important for counter clerks to wrap menu item such as sandwiches and desserts for serving or for takeout. They are often called upon to serve food or desserts to patrons in such settings as take-out counters of restaurants or lunchrooms, business or industrial establishments, hotel rooms, and cars. They also replenish foods at serving stations. They are sometimes expected to ready food such as sandwiches and ice cream dishes, using standard formulas or following directions. Somewhat less frequently, counter clerks are also expected to order items needed to replenish supplies.

Counter clerks sometimes are asked to serve salads and cocktails, ladle soups and sauces and fill beverage cups and glasses. and brew coffee and tea, and fill containers with requested beverages. And finally, they sometimes have to wrap menu item such as sandwiches and desserts for serving or for takeout.

Like many other jobs, counter clerks must be reliable and be thorough and dependable.

Similar jobs with educational opportunities in Naperville include:

  • Dining Room Attendant. Facilitate food service. Clean tables, carry dirty dishes, replace soiled table linens; set tables; replenish supply of clean linens, silverware, and dishes; supply service bar with food, and serve water, butter, and coffee to patrons.
  • Fast Food Cook. Prepare and cook food in fast food restaurants with limited menus. Duties of the cooks are limited to preparation of a few basic items and normally involve operating large-volume single-purpose cooking equipment.
  • Food Service Aide. Perform a variety of food preparation duties other than cooking, such as preparing cold foods and shellfish, slicing meat, and brewing coffee or tea.
  • Host Coordinator. Welcome patrons, seat them at tables or in lounge, and help ensure quality of facilities and service.
  • Institutional Cook. Prepare and cook large quantities of food for institutions, such as schools, hospitals, or cafeterias.
  • Short Order Cook. Prepare and cook to order a variety of foods that require only a short preparation time. May take orders from customers and serve patrons at counters or tables.
  • Waiter. Take orders and serve food and beverages to patrons at tables in dining establishment.


Harper College - Palatine, IL

Harper College, 1200 W Algonquin Rd, Palatine, IL 60067-7398. Harper College is a large college located in Palatine, Illinois. It is a public school with primarily 2-year programs and has 15,250 students. Harper College has a less than one year program in Food Service, Waiter/Waitress, & Dining Room Management/Manager which graduated seven students in 2008.


Quality Coffee Certification Program: The purpose of QCCP is to provide operators with sales tools and knowledge that will help them begin or enhance their own quality coffee program for their customers.

For more information, see the National Automatic Merchandising Association website.

LOCATION INFORMATION: Naperville, Illinois

Naperville, Illinois
Naperville, Illinois photo by JohnDBuell

Naperville is located in Dupage County, Illinois. It has a population of over 143,117, which has grown by 11.5% over the last ten years. The cost of living index in Naperville, 107, is above the national average. New single-family homes in Naperville are valued at $401,600 on average, which is far greater than the state average. In 2008, one hundred fifty-four new homes were built in Naperville, down from two hundred eighty-one the previous year.

The top three industries for women in Naperville are educational services, health care, and professional, scientific, and technical services. For men, it is professional, scientific, and technical services, finance and insurance, and construction. The average travel time to work is about 33 minutes. More than 60.6% of Naperville residents have a bachelor's degree, which is higher than the state average. The percentage of residents with a graduate degree, 23.7%, is higher than the state average.

The unemployment rate in Naperville is 8.1%, which is less than Illinois's average of 10.5%.

The percentage of Naperville residents that are affiliated with a religious congregation, 58.9%, is more than both the national and state average. Saints Peter and Paul Roman Catholic Church, Saint Thomas The Apostle Church and Bethany Church are some of the churches located in Naperville. The most common religious groups are the Catholic Church, the Lutheran Church and the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America.

Naperville is home to the High Grove Business Park and the Spring Brook Golf Course as well as Du Page River Park and Winding Creek Park. Shopping malls in the area include Pebblewood Plaza Shopping Center, Cress Creek Square Shopping Center and Cress Creek Shopping Center. Visitors to Naperville can choose from Fairfield Inn by Marriott, EXEL Inns of Chicago and Country Inn Suites Naperville for temporary stays in the area.