The Culinary Institute of America

  • The Best College Experience

    Look for world-class teaching kitchens and a high level of in-kitchen instruction hours.

    • At the CIA, you'll learn hands-on culinary and baking skills in our world-class professional kitchens and bakeshops. And in your freshman and sophomore years, you'll have an extraordinary 1,300 kitchen hours to develop your skills and build knowledge.

    Seek schools that have first-class restaurants and cafés on campus for professional learning.

    • At the end of your sophomore year, you'll complete your CIA associate degree in our award-winning, student-staffed restaurants and bakery cafés. Under the guidance of your instructors, you will prepare menu items ("back of the house") and serve customers ("front of the house"). You'll be cooking and serving real patrons, many of whom travel long distances to sample the dining experience the CIA and its students are famous for. It’s the ultimate in CIA hands-on learning.

    Select programs that include externships at leading restaurants, hotels, and resorts for real-world experience and industry connections.

    • All CIA students get an invaluable opportunity to gain real-world experience and industry connections during their 15-week, paid externships. You'll "go on extern" between your first and second years at one of more than 1,200 top foodservice properties around the world, such as Disney resorts, Ritz-Carlton hotels, Chocolatier magazine, The Breakers Resort, Amy's Bread, Jacques Torres Chocolates, Four Seasons hotels, the Food Network, and fine restaurants like Restaurant Daniel in New York City, Rumi in Miami, Marche in Chicago, and One Market in San Francisco.