Our First Bootcamp Has SOLD OUT!

Signups for our second cohort open July 1

Join the waitlist for early entry!

Retail Bakers of America + The Bake Fest Present


Skill up. Get certified. Grow your business.

Virtual Prep Course | July 29 – October 20, 2024

UPDATE: Our March cohort is now full!

Learn more

We'll let you in on a little secret:

Baking certifications aren’t just for people who went to culinary school.

If you are a home baker who is turning their passion into a business, getting certified through the Retail Bakers of America (RBA) is a great way to sharpen your skills and gain credibility in the eyes of your customers and community.

Introducing Baking Basics Bootcamp!

A virtual course designed to fully prepare you for the Certified Journey Decorator (CJD) exam, taught by RBA’s Director of Education and Certification, Marissa Sertich Velie

Our very first Baking Basics Bootcamp will focus on preparing you for the Certified Journey Decorator (CJD) exam. The 12-week virtual program includes a comprehensive study guide, a 1-Year RBA Membership, and we’ll cover your test fee ($100)!

The CJD certification is, as its name suggests, all about honing your decoration skills. Though classes will cover the science of baking, the course as a whole emphasizes the art of decoration—and these skills can give you an edge in both your business and baking career.
Journey Decorator (1)

Why get RBA Certified?

If you’ve been involved in The Bake Fest, have taken other workshops, or have even started your own home business, an RBA certification is a great next step to:

Learn more about RBA certifications on their website.

Who is this bootcamp for?

Our bootcamp is designed for bakers with a year or more experience baking, and who are current or aspiring business bakers! And, since bootcamp participants will be reading RBA-recommended materials, taking classes and participating in class discussions, the standard 2,000 hours experience requirement for certification is waived for cohort members going from bootcamp to CJD exam.

About the Bootcamp

Baking Basics Bootcamp is a three (3) month virtual certification prep program.

This upcoming July 2024 Baking Basics Bootcamp will prepare you for the Retail Bakers of America Certified Journey Decorator (CJD) certification exam. Therefore, learning modules will focus heavily on decorating skills!

Course Details

Unit 1 (Weeks 1 – 6): Equipment, Recipe Formulation & Baking Ingredient Function

In this unit, you’ll learn how to work with standard electric scales, covering topics like volume, weight and temperature. You’ll explore various types of thermometers, basic equipment and smallwares. Finally, you’ll learn about basic ingredients in order to understand the science behind recipe formulation!

Unit 2 (Weeks 7 – 12): Basic Cake Techniques

An evenly and cleanly filled and frosted cake is the foundation of any stable, well-constructed cake creation. In this course, you will sharpen their frosting skills and decorating techniques. You’ll learn to efficiently split, fill, frost, border and write an inscription on an 8” round cake. You’ll also explore various types of cake decorating equipment and smallware, including piping tips and piping skills.

Each course is broken down into 5-6 modules to ensure deep learning. Click here to view the full course overview.



Let's break it down...


Prepping on Your Own


Joining the Bootcamp

...That’s a total value of $1,500 for just $350!

Format & Resources for Success

Classes will be posted as links to our learning platform, Circle, each week for the twelve (12) week course duration. The best part? You can watch the classes on your own time each week! In addition to the planned modules, cohort members will also receive:

Timeline, Cohort Size & Cost

Our small group classes facilitate deep learning and personalized attention!

Don’t delay! Cohort members are accepted on a first come, first served basis until the program is full (25 participants).

Remember: Spots are limited to 25 total participants! Register now to lock in your spot.

Frequently Asked Questions About Baking Basics Bootcamp

Typically with RBA certifications, training courses are not offered, which makes this new bootcamp completely unique! When bakers come to RBA from the industry to get certified, RBA usually requires 2,000 hours of experience, because these bakers are not taking any prep courses. Since bootcamp participants will be reading RBA-recommended materials, taking classes and participating in class discussions, the 2,000 hours requirement is waived for cohort members going from bootcamp to CJD exam.
Our bootcamp includes two modules: “Equipment, Recipe Formulation & Baking Ingredient Function,” and “Basic Cake Techniques;” you can see a more detailed module breakdown here.

That said, our inaugural bootcamp is designed to prepare you for the Certified Journey Decorator (CJD) exam, which, as its name suggests, is more focused on decorating than the science of baking. If you’re only interested in learning the science of baking (not decorating), we may offer a prep class for the Certified Journey Baker (CJB) certification in the future. If that’s something you would like, let us know by emailing us at hello@thebakefest.com to express your interest!
Video lectures are 20-40 minutes per week. As for assignments, there will be group discussion and supplemental materials to complete, but no mandatory requirements. You do not receive a final grade or evaluation for the course. However, to earn your CJD certificate, you must pass the test with a 75% or higher score.
No problem. If you miss a lecture, those materials will still be available to you, and you can review them on your own time as you catch up.
We love this question – and we hope there will be! We intend to offer additional courses in the future if interest is there. Stay on our email list to get updates.
Yes! You can take the course and subsequent certification exam, and enjoy the benefits of an RBA membership (included in the cost of the bootcamp), but bear in mind that RBA certifications may not be as meaningful outside of the US and Canada. RBA is closely partnered with the Baking Association of Canada. One organization will often provide discounts for the other’s courses, and vice-versa.

This upcoming Baking Basics Bootcamp will run from July 29 – October 20, 2024.

You’ll register for this course online. Early Access Registration opens at 10 AM CST on Monday, July 1. Early Access is limited to waitlisted folks, so if you’re interested, join the waitlist here! Waitlisted people will receive a direct link to the event registration page via email. Standard Registration opens to everyone else (and the public) on our website on Tuesday, July 2.

Meet your instructor, Marissa Sertich Velie!

Marissa Sertich Velie is a super-talented pastry chef and the Executive Director at Retail Bakers of America. Her career began when Marissa graduated from the Culinary Institute of America’s Baking and Pastry Arts program, then worked her way through the sweet side of kitchens in Ohio, Massachusetts, and New York. This included a year at Joanne Chang’s Flour Bakery + Cafe in Boston. She earned a MA in food studies at New York University, where she researched the performance of gender in the professional kitchen.

Marissa is so excited to kick off this certification prep bootcamp in collaboration with our team at The Bake Fest!

Questions? Just Reach Out!

Wondering if you’re the right candidate for this course?

No questions are off-limits! Please don’t hesitate to reach out to Stefani Pollack at hello@thebakefest.com with any questions.