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Career and Education Opportunities for Bakers in Vancouver, Washington

Baker career and educational opportunities abound in Vancouver, Washington. There are currently 3,530 working bakers in Washington; this should grow 6% to about 3,740 working bakers in the state by 2016. This is better than the nation as a whole, where employment opportunities for bakers are expected to grow by about 0.2%. In general, bakers mix and bake ingredients according to recipes to produce breads, rolls, or other baked goods.

Bakers earn about $14 per hour or $30,170 yearly on average in Washington and about $11 per hour or $23,290 annually on average nationally. Earnings for bakers are better than earnings in the general category of Food in Washington and not quite as good as general Food category earnings nationally.

There are three schools within twenty-five miles of Vancouver where you can study to be a baker, among forty-eight schools of higher education total in the Vancouver area. The most common level of education for bakers is a high school diploma or GED. You can expect to spend only a short time training to become a baker if you already have a high school diploma.

CAREER DESCRIPTION: Baker

In general, bakers mix and bake ingredients according to recipes to produce breads, rolls, or other baked goods.

Bakers measure and weigh flour and other ingredients to ready batters and icings, using scales and graduated containers. They also set oven temperatures and place items into hot ovens for baking. Equally important, bakers have to check apparatus to insure that it meets health and safety regulations and perform maintenance or cleaning, as needed. They are often called upon to check the quality of raw materials to insure that standards and specifications are met. They are expected to combine measured ingredients in bowls of mixing or cooking machinery. Finally, bakers order and receive supplies and equipment.

Every day, bakers are expected to be able to listen to and understand others in meetings. They need to see details at a very fine level of focus.

It is important for bakers to place dough in pans or on sheets, and bake in production ovens or on grills. They are often called upon to ready and maintain inventory and production records. They also roll and shape dough to fashion sweet rolls and other products. They are sometimes expected to adapt the quantity of ingredients to match the amount of items to be baked. Somewhat less frequently, bakers are also expected to combine measured ingredients in bowls of mixing or cooking machinery.

Bakers sometimes are asked to order and receive supplies and equipment. They also have to be able to operate slicing and wrapping machines And finally, they sometimes have to roll and shape dough to fashion sweet rolls and other products.

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

Similar jobs with educational opportunities in Vancouver include:

EDUCATIONAL OPPORTUNITIES: Baker Training

Western Culinary Institute - Portland, OR

Western Culinary Institute, 600 SW 10th Avenue, Suite 400, Portland, OR 97205. Western Culinary Institute is a small school located in Portland, Oregon. It is a private for-profit school with primarily 2-year programs and has 806 students. Western Culinary Institute has a less than one year and an associate's degree program in Baking and Pastry Arts/Baker/Pastry Chef which graduated forty-six and ninety-six students respectively in 2008.

Pioneer Pacific College - Wilsonville, OR

Pioneer Pacific College, 27501 SW Parkway Ave, Wilsonville, OR 97070-9296. Pioneer Pacific College is a small college located in Wilsonville, Oregon. It is a private for-profit school with primarily 4-year or above programs and has 1,123 students. Pioneer Pacific College has a less than one year program in Baking and Pastry Arts/Baker/Pastry Chef which graduated twenty-two students in 2008.

Clark College - Vancouver, WA

Clark College, 1933 Fort Vancouver Way, Vancouver, WA 98663-3598. Clark College is a large college located in Vancouver, Washington. It is a public school with primarily 2-year programs and has 10,378 students. Clark College has less than one year, one to two year, and associate's degree programs in Baking and Pastry Arts/Baker/Pastry Chef which graduated ten, one, and three students respectively in 2008.

CERTIFICATIONS

Certified Baker: A Certified Baker prepares and produces baked goods while assisting with general commercial bakery operations.

For more information, see the Retail Bakers of America website.

LOCATION INFORMATION: Vancouver, Washington

Vancouver, Washington
Vancouver, Washington photo by Matthiasb

Vancouver is located in Clark County, Washington. It has a population of over 163,186, which has grown by 13.7% in the past ten years. The cost of living index in Vancouver, 98, is near the national average. New single-family homes in Vancouver are priced at $95,700 on average, which is far less than the state average. In 2008, two hundred eighty new homes were built in Vancouver, down from four hundred twenty the previous year.

The three most popular industries for women in Vancouver are health care, educational services, and accommodation and food services. For men, it is construction, computer and electronic products, and accommodation and food services. The average travel time to work is about 23 minutes. More than 21.7% of Vancouver residents have a bachelor's degree, which is lower than the state average. The percentage of residents with a graduate degree, 7.4%, is lower than the state average.

The unemployment rate in Vancouver is 7.8%, which is less than Washington's average of 8.7%.

The percentage of Vancouver residents that are affiliated with a religious congregation, 27.9%, is less than both the national and state average. The most prominent religious groups are the Catholic Church, the LDS (Mormon) Church and the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America.

Vancouver is home to the Vancouver Square and the Vancouver Plaza as well as Leverich Park and Wintler Park. Shopping malls in the area include Arbours Shopping Center, Millport Shopping Center and Vancouver Village Shopping Center. Visitors to Vancouver can choose from Comfort Suites Vancouver, Homewood Suites Portland-Vancouver and Best Western Hotel and Suites Vacouver Mall Dr for temporary stays in the area.