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Cookery student/chef preparing food in kitchens

Hospitality and cookery

For those passionate about creating and delivering great food, beverages, and service, embarking on study within cookery or hospitality are great study options with a huge demand in the industry for trained staff.

Completing our culinary qualifications will enable you to work as a cook/chef in a commercial kitchen. Not only will you learn cookery skills, but also the knowledge of how to create and price menus, order supplies, cater for events, and many other important skills needed to be successful in the industry. 

Studying hospitality prepares students to provide high-level customer service within the food and beverage environment. Whether it’s working as a barista to produce top-notch coffee, engaging customers, serving food, or operating the stands at a café, these qualifications teach you all the best-practice protocols and tricks of the hospitality trade. 

All programmes lead to nationally recognised qualifications. In addition, the Licence Controller qualification is offered within the Restaurant and Bar Supervisory programme and as a stand-alone course. Industry-specific short courses are also offered in areas of food safety and barista training. 

"The style of teaching and learning is different and far better than anything else I have ever experienced. When I studied in India, it was very traditional and stressed me out. Here at Wintec, while there is definitely theory, practical knowledge is where the focus is. The tutors really care and look after every student to ensure they are thriving mentally and doing the best job they can. "

Read Rakshanda's story

Take a look behind the scenes

Careers in hospitality and cookery

Waiters or waitresses will be busy looking after the needs of diners in restaurants, clubs, hotels and cafes. They will explain the menu, take orders, serve food and drinks and anticipate their client’s needs. Clearing tables, polishing cutlery and assisting in the restocking of food and drinks is also part of the everyday duties.

Preparing, serving and selling fresh food and drinks are the skills of a food counter assistant. Food counter assistants will also be answering questions from customers about the food on display, checking to ensure food is kept fresh and at a safe temperature, managing the till, weighing, pricing and packing orders, and managing staff and work rosters.

Maitre d' are responsible for the overall smooth running of a restaurant or café. They greet customers as they arrive, organise their seating, introduce them to their waiter, and ensure their dining experience goes without a hitch. They supervise the staff, check bills, order stock, and organise the cleaning and closing of the restaurant each evening.

Chefs prepare and cook food in hotels, restaurants, cafes, and bars. They could also be involved in designing, planning and pricing menus, training and supervising staff, buying food supplies and equipment, keeping records, and keeping work areas clean and tidy.

Caterers manage and coordinate the preparation of food for functions or events. They could help cook the food, meet with clients to plan the event, coordinate staff, organise seating and any additional equipment needed, pack up after the event, and do administrative tasks such as billing.

Experience opportunities

Waiter for a night

Student waiter carrying food to table

Waiter for a night is an opportunity to find out what it's like to study at Wintec and work as a waiter.

Learn more

Chef for a Night

Student chef stirring food in pot on the stove

Chef for a night is an opportunity to find out what it's like to study cookery at Wintec and work as a chef.

Learn more

Graduate profiles

Joel Miller

Chef de partie to a royal family

Wintec cookery graduate Joel Miller couldn’t be happier with the way his life is going right now. The 22-year-old Hamilton chef has a dream job as chef de partie to a royal family in Bahrain.

We talk to Joel about his study journey from Wintec to Bahrain and find out just what it takes to land your dream job.

Emma Galloway

Cookery graduate Emma Galloway
Emma Galloway
Cookbook author, food stylist, photographer and award-winning blogger at My Darling Lemon Thyme
Trade Certificate Level 3 of Professional Cookery (now known as Culinary Arts)
From a young age Emma Galloway knew she wanted to work with food. In her last year of high school, she got a part-time job in a local Raglan café, and the year after she made the decision to study cookery at Wintec. 

“Not only did I want to increase my knowledge, I also knew that having a qualification behind me would mean better work opportunities both here and overseas.”

While studying Emma worked in the industry in different jobs, varying from working in, and then running, the kitchen of a café to working for two top catering companies in Australia. This involvement in the industry while training made the move to full-time work once qualified straightforward, and after working as a chef for six years after graduating, she now works as a freelance recipe developer, food stylist and photographer; writes columns in both Cuisine and Nourish magazines, creates recipes for her blog and works with selected brands to promote their products.

“My study at Wintec set me up with the knowledge and confidence to work in the fast-paced hospitality industry. Even though I no longer work as a chef, I still call on the knowledge gained when developing new recipes and when tackling big projects like writing my two cookbooks I’d use time plans like I remember doing all those years ago at Wintec.”

“Even though experience is often just as valuable as professional training, I really believe that having a solid foundation in cookery, understanding processes and the whys and hows, will set you up for success in the long-term.”

One of the highlights of her time at Wintec? The tutors, of course!

“Their enthusiasm was infectious and their practical knowledge, tips and experience from working in the industry were super helpful.”

Josh Emett

Critically acclaimed chef, Josh Emett, came from humble beginnings growing up on a dairy farm just outside Hamilton.

After studying to be a chef at Waikato Polytechnic (now Wintec) he quickly progressed to fine dining restaurants in Auckland and Melbourne and then moved to London and worked for Gordon Ramsay for over 10 years, quickly becoming head chef at the world renowned Savoy Grill before opening restaurants for Gordon Ramsay in New York, Los Angeles and Melbourne.

On returning to New Zealand, Josh and his business partner Fleur opened Madam Woo in Queenstown, and have since opened three more Madam Woos in Dunedin, Takapuna, and Hamilton, with Christchurch due to open in February.

“As someone who just wanted to get into a kitchen and start working, Wintec’s hands on practical learning was a perfect fit. Through Wintec’s connection to industry I gained work experience in Auckland’s Cin Cin restaurant which resulted in a full time job and my career as a chef began.”

Read more.

Wintec graduate and chef Josh Emett

Josh Emett
Cookery graduate. 2012 Wintec Honorary Award Winner


Studying hospitality or cookery at Wintec, means practising in our prized student-run training restaurant. Windows is a fully functioning, licensed training restaurant, serving and cooking for paying public guests! Cookery students will learn in two large commercial kitchens and a production kitchen.


Hospitality and Cookery pathway diagram

To check what you need to gain entry to a course, review the entry criteria available on each programme page. These assist you in understanding what qualifications or experience are typically required to gain entry. You can contact our team at or 0800 2 Wintec at any time for further guidance.

About the faculty

We offer a range of courses covering the areas of hospitality, cookery, and restaurant and beverage service. The programmes provide diverse opportunities for graduates and a broad range of career paths. 

The training and qualifications have local, national and international relevance, which is achieved through best- practice facilitation, modern facilities, current industry technologies, flexible delivery, and contemporary practices. 

Read more about the Centre.


Prospectus (course guide)

The Wintec Prospectus (otherwise known as a course guide) outlines everything you need to know about Wintec. It contains information about the Wintec campuses, student life, and the programmes that are on offer.

Access your copy of the Wintec Prospectus

The Wintec Prospectus (course guide) is available by downloading the file - click on a document below to access the file. Alternatively, to request a copy via email or the post, please complete the form below.

Request an emailable or printed copy of the Prospectus

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