For many thousands of years bakers have been charged with providing humanity with the bread necessary to survive. Historically, becoming a baker required an apprenticeship, in which a young person would learn the tricks of the trade directly from a master baker in a hands-on manner. After several years of hard work, the apprentice would be free to set up his own shop and take on the job of teaching his trade to others.
These days, becoming a baker is not much different than it was back then, and in most cases becoming a baker does not require getting a degree, as you will learn your trade on the job. On the other hand, if you are looking to become a professional baker, one who works at a specialized restaurant or a gourmet pastry shop, at least an associate´s degree from a culinary school may be required.
In many cases, becoming a professional baker requires a degree in culinary arts, baking, or pastry arts. As you work towards one of these degrees you will learn all the skills required for the successful production of bread, different confections, specialized pastries, a variety of desserts and other forms of patisserie, together with basic cooking skills and food sanitation.
Once you have earned your degree you will very likely start out as an apprentice, but you must remember this is a paid position and the knowledge and skills you acquired during the time it took to get your degree will help you climb the ranks quickly, allowing you to become the head baker at any number of restaurants or bakeries.
Earning a degree in culinary arts, baking, or pastry arts can take one to three years, depending on your location and the specific institution, together with the course load you take on. Even so, when you want to become a professional baker, the time it takes to achieve your dream is a worthy investment, as it will ensure you have all the skills required to excel at your chosen profession.