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Career and Education Opportunities for Institutional Cooks in New Jersey

New Jersey has a population of 8,707,739, which has grown by 3.49% over the past 10 years. Nicknamed the "Garden State," its capital is Trenton, though its largest city is Newark.

There are currently 6,600 jobs for institutional cooks in New Jersey and this is projected to grow 16% to 7,700 jobs by 2016. This is better than the nation as a whole, where employment opportunities for institutional cooks are expected to grow by about 9.7%. Institutional cooks generally prepare and cook large quantities of food for institutions, such as schools, hospitals, or cafeterias.

The income of an institutional cook is about $13 per hour or $27,870 per year on average in New Jersey. In the U.S. as a whole, their income is about $10 per hour or $22,210 annually on average. Incomes for institutional cooks are not quite as good as in the overall category of Cooking in New Jersey, and not quite as good as the overall Cooking category nationally. Jobs in this field include: food and nutrition services assistant, chef, and dietary aide.

In 2008, there were a total of 5,176,293 jobs in New Jersey. The average annual income was $51,473 in 2008, up from $50,364 in 2007. The unemployment rate in New Jersey was 9.2% in 2009, which has grown by 3.7% since the previous year. About 29.8% of New Jersey residents have college degrees, which is higher than the national average.

The top industries in New Jersey include wholesale trade, durable goods merchant wholesalers, and drugs' sundries merchant wholesalers. Notable tourist destinations include the Newark Museum, the Smithsonian Institution, and the New Jersey Historical Society.

CITIES WITH Institutional Cook OPPORTUNITIES IN New Jersey


JOB DESCRIPTION: Institutional Cook

Institutional Cook video from the State of New Jersey Dept. of Labor and Workforce Development

In general, institutional cooks prepare and cook large quantities of food for institutions, such as schools, hospitals, or cafeterias.

Every day, institutional cooks are expected to be able to articulate ideas and problems. They need to listen to and understand others in meetings. It is also important that they evaluate problems as they arise.

Similar jobs with educational opportunities in New Jersey include:

  • Chef. Direct the preparation, seasoning, and cooking of salads, soups, or other foods. May plan and price menu items, order supplies, and keep records and accounts. May participate in cooking.
  • 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.
  • Food and Beverage Supervisor. Supervise workers engaged in preparing and serving food.
  • Personal Chef. Prepare meals in private homes.
  • Restaurant Chef. Prepare, season, and cook soups, meats, or other foodstuffs in restaurants. May order supplies, keep records and accounts, price items on menu, or plan menu.
  • 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.

LOCATION INFORMATION: New Jersey

New Jersey
New Jersey photo by Derek Jensen

New Jersey has a population of 8,707,739, which has grown by 3.49% in the last 10 years. Nicknamed the "Garden State," its capital is Trenton, though its most populous city is Newark. In 2008, there were a total of 5,176,293 jobs in New Jersey. The average annual income was $51,473 in 2008, up from $50,364 the previous year. The unemployment rate in New Jersey was 9.2% in 2009, which has grown by 3.7% since the previous year. Roughly 29.8% of New Jersey residents have college degrees, which is higher than the national average.

The top industries in New Jersey include wholesale trade, durable goods merchant wholesalers, and drugs' sundries merchant wholesalers. Notable tourist attractions include the Morris Museum, the New Jersey Historical Society, and the A P Personal Limo.