Last updated on December 31st, 2019 at 11:14 pm
Disclosure: This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of Johnson & Wales University. The opinions and text are all mine.
Do you have a child in high school? If you do, you know the decision about what they’ll do after graduation can sneak up on you. That’s why it’s never too early to start thinking about it. This big question is one my high-school-age son has struggled with. Since our visit to Johnson & Wales University, I think we are a little closer to a decision.
Johnson & Wales University has four campuses, and our family visited the one near us in Charlotte, North Carolina. I was familiar with JWU as a culinary school. It has a reputation for producing world renowned chefs and restaurateurs, like Emeril Lagasse. What I found out during our campus visit is that JWU deserves its reputation as a great culinary university, but there are some other excellent programs there as well.
Students earn four-year university degrees taking classes in subjects like math and English, as they would at any other university, but they also take hands-on classes in their chosen major. That might be Culinary Arts, Baking & Pastry Arts, Hotel and Lodging Management, or Sports/Entertainment/Event Management.
JWU has large working restaurant-style kitchens, and students even operate their own restaurants. The university owns its own hotel, and students get real-world experience working there. Students who major in Sports/Entertainment/Event Management benefit from the connections the university has with the Carolina Panthers and Charlotte Hornets. In other words, students in all degree programs learn by experience, giving them a tremendous advantage when it’s time to go out into the workplace. Johnson & Wales graduates are highly sought after because they have this hand-on experience. I can’t tell you how impressed I was with everything I learned on our tour!
The Johnson & Wales Charlotte Campus is uptown, and parking is easy, since it has its own parking garage. When they’re not in school, students have lots to do, with stores, parks, and restaurants within walking distance. I should mention there’s a fitness center and all kinds of activities and clubs on campus too. The university does have some sports teams if that’s something your child is interested in. My son was happy to hear there’s a varsity basketball team.
I liked the diversity of the student body and that there are few enough students that everyone seems to know each other. I was pleasantly surprised when touring the residence halls. There are just two dorm rooms sharing a bathroom–much nicer than a whole floor sharing one large bathroom. That may not seem like a big deal, but when it comes to day-to-day living, it makes a difference.
We had a terrific tour guide who told us about the fun little perks JWU students get, like the chance to eat the wedding cakes the students make, or when chocolate makers come to the university to teach them about different kinds of chocolate. (At least those were the perks that jumped out at me!) She also told us about the Study Abroad program, internship programs, and JWU’s small class sizes.
I encourage you to schedule a tour of the Johnson & Wales University near you, or the one that offers the degree your child is interested in. There is so much more to see and learn, and you and your child will want to experience for yourself. I know you’ll be pleasantly surprised, like I was!
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This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of Johnson & Wales University. The opinions and text are all mine.