Jun 24, 2024  
Academic Program Manuals 2023-2024 
Academic Program Manuals 2023-2024 [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

Culinary Arts Policies & Procedures

This student handbook has been developed by the staff of the Culinary Arts Department. It is intended to be a supplement to the Indian Hills Community College handbook; consequently, all policies and regulations from the general handbook are to be observed in addition to those outlined in the following pages.

The staff of the Indian Hills Community College Culinary Arts Department would like to welcome you and want you to know we are here to assist you in every way possible. We look forward to your success

 Culinary Arts Program Goals & Objectives

It is the goal of the faculty of the Culinary Arts department to provide students with the behavior, knowledge, and skills necessary to obtain employment in the foodservice profession.

Student Behavior - Professionalism

Skill and knowledge are essential aspects of competent job performance. However, work behaviors, values, and habits are equally important in securing and holding a job. These are not skills that can be taught but attitudes and behaviors that must be recognized and developed from within the individual. We all can recognize people who have what it takes to “make it”. We can just as easily recognize those who never will. This judgment is based not so much on what the person can do or what they know but more on how they approach “getting the job done”. These behaviors we term professionalism. They include but are not limited to the following:

  • Maintaining a positive attitude - about oneself, your work, your fellow workers, your employer, etc. You must like what you do!
  • Working well with people - understanding teamwork is essential to the completion of any task. Being organized and efficient both mentally and physically. Knowing what you are going to do and having a well designed plan to accomplish it.
  • Willingness to do more than “just what is required to get by”. Always being in control - of your work, your emotions, etc.
  • Being open minded, eager to learn - understanding the value of other peoples’ experiences, ideas, suggestions, and criticisms. There is always a better way, find it!
  • Dedication to quality - everything should be done to the best of your ability. Take pride in what you do! Never lose sight of the ultimate goal - CUSTOMER SATISFACTION!
  • Students should refrain from gossip and hearsay among fellow students.

Code of Ethics for Professional Culinarians

Recognizing, respecting, and wanting to perpetuate the significant contribution that we have made to the physical, social commercial, political and cultural well-being of society, professional culinarians do pledge to:

  • Approach their responsibilities with professional pride and dedication and by example encourage others to attain professional standards.
  • Serve their profession proudly and with dignity and promote its accomplishments to the public.
  • Cooperate with colleagues to advance professionalism.
  • Strive for greater professional knowledge.
  • Achieve the highest standards of quality at the most favorable costs and with the most effective utilization of human and physical resources.
  • Willingly share their knowledge and experience with others to increase their ability to perform at the highest possible level.
  • Graciously accept suggestions from others insofar as they serve to increase knowledge and performance.
  • Offer comments to a colleague only for the purpose of increasing knowledge and performance and refrain from criticism that would serve to lower the esteem of fellow professionals or is aimed at personal gain.
  • Diligently maintain the highest appropriate standards of food quality to achieve personal, public, and employer satisfaction.
  • Strive to be courteous, fair and considerate in dealing with all others, respecting their dignity.
  • Conscientiously serve the best interest of the public.
  • Seek to understand and maintain the principles of sanitation, safety and nutrition to protect the health and safety of the public and colleagues.
  • Respect, conserve and maintain the tools, equipment and materials of the professional, especially food products and other scarce resources.
  • Present a clean and neat appearance, reflecting the pride and care with which professional responsibilities are approached.
  • Deal honestly and truthfully, respect the property and resources of others, and not use such property or resources for personal gain.
  • Consider the interest of employers and carry out their established policies.
  • Avoid activities that might bring discredit to oneself, employers, colleagues or the profession.

American Culinary Federation of Southeast Iowa Junior Chapter

All culinary students are strongly urged to join our ACF Junior Chapter which will help to promote and fund student activities throughout the year. Our program is accredited by the American Culinary Federation and full membership is required upon graduation to received certification through the ACF. Your membership dues are yearly and club activities will help you to stay current in your affiliation.

Other important elements of our Junior ACF Chapter include:

  • Promoting your goals and our program within our community.
  • Raising funds for regional and national ACF conferences and Travel Abroad studies.
  • Promote and develop interpersonal, organizational and leadership skills.
  • Engage in practical skills necessary for the workplace environment.

Policies & Procedures


Indian Hills Community College considers attendance to be very important. We want and expect the students to be here. Attendance records are maintained for each class and lab every day. Prospective employers usually ask for and expect to see student attendance records as well as their grades. However, a student’s attendance records will not be released without that student’s permission.

Students will be allowed the opportunity to make up tests missed due to absences. There will be a make up day per term, this date will be announced during orientation at the beginning of each term. Make up tests will be a different version than the regularly scheduled test. Students will not be allowed the opportunity to make up quizzes.

The department Director determines if each student is meeting the objectives of the program. Failure to meet these objectives will require a student - Director conference. This evaluation will be based upon attendance, lab grades, performance, & employability. Excessive absences may result in the student failing to meet program objectives and could lead to a faculty recommendation for dismissal of the student from the program.

If an unavoidable period of extended absences is anticipated the student should contact the Culinary Arts Program Director. If this situation is known in advance, the faculty will work with the student in an attempt to minimize any adverse impact on the student’s educational goals.

Student Dress Code

As future members of the Culinary Arts profession, students are expected to take pride in themselves and their appearance. Accordingly, all students enrolled in Culinary Arts courses must conform to the following dress code:

White chef coat; black chef pants; black shoes (no cloth tennis shoes, crocks or open toed shoes of any kind); white chef hat, apron. Students are required to have a thermometer, knife & garnish set. Students are to wear a solid white undergarment under their chef coat.

All uniforms are the responsibility of the student and should be clean, unwrinkled, and in good repair.

Student’s appearance and personal hygiene must comply with all applicable state and local health laws. For example, hair must be clean and of appropriate style, color for today’s standards in a professional kitchen and front of the house service. Any visual piercing must be removed or covered while in the kitchen or front of the house. Students should be free from offensive body odor, and fingernails should be clean, well-trimmed, and free of finger nail polish. As a safety precaution, students will not be allowed to wear jewelry, only wedding band. Cell phones must be turned off or set to vibrate during classes and cannot be used by students without permission of the instructor.   

Students not in compliance with the dress code will be excused from class or lab by their instructor until they do comply!

Kitchen Procedures/Lab Safety Rules

Culinary Arts students are required to comply with all State of Iowa and City of Ottumwa health laws and abide by the rules and regulations of the Culinary Arts Department and Indian Hills Community College or face the possibility of disciplinary action.

  1. Daily attendance is expected. Report to your classroom, lab, or work station with necessary textbooks, lab equipment, paper, pencils, etc. ready to begin at designated time.
  2. Students are required to adhere to the approved dress code while in classroom, lab, or cafeteria.
  3. Attitudes and relationships towards other students, instructors, and staff of IHCC should be governed by the spirit of the Culinarian’s Code.
  4. No foul or abusive language will be tolerated within the department.
  5. We cannot be responsible for your personal possessions. Each student is issued a locker. Use it! Students are responsible for their own pad locks.
  6. Anyone caught stealing, in possession of or under the influence of alcohol or an illegal substance, or vandalizing school property faces immediate disciplinary action.
  7. Any student or group of students suspected of cheating will be dealt with in accordance with IHCC policy.
  8. Students may request a conference with any staff member by appointment during office hours at the beginning or end of the day. However, students are not to be in staff offices unless accompanied by staff member.
  9. Office, lab & dish room phones are for IHCC business only. Students may make local calls from a red phone located by the Pothoven Academic SUCCESS Center.
  10. There is to be no eating or drinking in any lab. This includes cafeteria serving line and dish area. Follow recommended procedures for taste-testing food.
  11. Smoking is not permitted on campus.
  12. Work stations should be kept neat and organized to promote efficiency. Practice good mise en place at all times.
  13. No one is to sit on stainless steel tables, wood benches, or other food preparation areas.
  14. All equipment is to be treated with respect. It is to be used, cleaned, maintained, and stored properly.
  15. Safety regulations are to be followed at all times.
  16. Any spills on floors no matter how small should be mopped up and dried immediately.
  17. DO NOT operate any equipment without safety attachments or that you have not been trained to use!
  18. Perishable food items are to be kept under refrigeration. Do not remove more foodstuffs from coolers than can be prepped in a reasonable amount of time.
  19. Dishes and utensils should be scraped and rinsed immediately after use and stacked neatly so they may be taken to dish washing area. If you burn it on – you wash it off! Student’s are responsible for washing and returning dishes and utensils to proper place that they used at the end of lab period.
  20. All kitchen and storage areas will be cleaned, reorganized, and sanitized during clean-up period at the end of each lab session. All leftovers must be properly stored and marked. Equipment and utensils should be cleaned and returned to proper storage places. Garbage and boxes should be taken out and the floor swept.
  21. Students are to use their own knife set and garnish set and they are responsible for those sets at all times.
  22. Do not spray perfume or cologne on in the classroom, lab, or locker area. Some students could be allergic or sensitive to those items.



Culinary Director and instructors will review information and requirements for scheduled contest. A student meeting the required guidelines set up by the culinary department will have the opportunity to participate in competitions.


There will be a makeup day per term. This date will be announced during orientation at the beginning of each term. Late test/s will be docked one letter grade.

Grading System

The grades you earn for all classes are based on the following percentage scale:

Percentage Letter Numerical
Scale Grade Grade
100-90 A 4
89-80 B 3
79-70 C 2
69-60 D 1
50-0 F 0

Students may compute their GPA at any time by following this example:

Course Credit Hours x Numerical Grad = Grade Points
Principles of Cooking 4 4 (A) 16
Foodservice Lab 1 2 3 (B) 6
Culinary Skills 3 2 (C) 6
Dining Service 2 1 (D) 2
Credit Hours Attempted = 11 Total Grade Points = 30

Total Grade Points ÷ Credit Hours Attempted = Grade Point Average ( 30 divided by 11 = 2.73 GPA )

Should a student detect any errors concerning his/her grades, they should notify the school within two weeks after the grades have been distributed. The student should check any individual grade questions immediately with the instructor who issued the grade. If students have questions regarding their GPA, they should contact their instructor or the Culinary Arts Program Director.


All students are encouraged to purchase a binder their first term to be used as a portfolio. Every term the student will have display project pictures, letters of recommendations, and certifications professionally to document their progress. Portfolios are a must in today’s industry for a job.


The ability of a student to get a job in his/her career field upon graduation is a very important part of the educational process. The department, working cooperatively with each student, will do everything possible to see that his objective is met.

  • The student is responsible to actively seeking employment. We can help, but finding a job is the student’s responsibility.
  • The department will keep students informed of available jobs of which we are notified. We will send resumes and grades and host of interviewers when applicable.
  • The department maintains a list of job openings on line at: acfofsoutheasterniowa.org
  • The student should provide the department with placement data, once a job is accepted.

Curriculum & Requirements

To view the full program curriculum, please click on the links below.

To view the full descriptions for each course, click here.

Program Forms

The following form must be printed, signed and returned to the Culinary Arts Department prior to the first scheduled day of class.  

Graduation Checklist

Are you ready to graduate from your Culinary Arts Program? To see the progress you have made in your program so far and stay on track towards graduation, you can check your Degree Audit at any time by simply following the process below.

  • Login to WebAdvisor
    • If you are having trouble logging into WebAdvisor, please contact the IT Help Desk, (their contact information is listed below for your convenience.
  • Select Student Planning
  • Select My Progress

IT Help Desk

We’re here to help YOU, so ask us. It’s just that easy. We’ll get you the answers you need. Submit and track a Help Desk Request by visiting: www.indianhills.edu/help

Call Us: 641) 683-5333

(800) 726-2585, ext. 5333

Email Us: [email protected]

Computer Tutorials

PDF and Video Tutorials are provided to assist you in gaining the required proficiency with the systems you will use at Indian Hills Community College.


Culinarian’s Code

I pledge my professional knowledge and skill to the advancement of our profession and to pass it on to those that are to follow.

 I shall foster a spirit of courteous consideration and cooperation within our profession.

 I shall place honor and the standing of our profession before personal advantage.

 I shall not use unfair means to affect my professional advancement or to injure the chances of another colleague to secure and hold employment.

 I shall be fair, courteous and considerate in my dealings with culinary colleagues.

 I shall conduct any necessary comment on, or criticism of, the work of my professional colleagues with careful regard for the good name and dignity of the culinary profession, and will scrupulously refrain from criticism to gain personal advantage.

 I shall never expect anyone to subject themselves to risks which I would not be willing to assume myself.

 I shall help to protect all members against one another from within our profession. I shall be just and enthusiastic about the success of others as I am about my own.

I shall be too big for worry, too noble for anger, too strong for fear and too happy to permit the pressure of business to hurt anyone, within or without the profession.

Faculty & Staff

For a full listing of Faculty members please visit the faculty directory in the College Catalog & Student Handbook or search the Online Faculty/Staff Directory.