The worldwide foodservice industry represents thousands of cultures around the globe. Food is attached in so many ways to culture, and foodservice often overflows cultures to blend into others. The fusion of cuisines and the importing and exporting of concepts, ideas, and ingredients help to create a diverse culinary landscape. The migrating peoples of the globe carry traditions and cultural practices beyond all borders. The Culinary Institute of America strives to educate the future leaders in this extremely diverse field and therefore must be diverse as an entity.
The Culinary Institute of America (CIA) traces its roots to 1944, when Charles Rovetti, who at the time was executive secretary of the New Haven Restaurant Association, suggested to the association’s then-president, Richard Dargan, that the association should consider opening a school for the training of professional cooks and chefs. The idea took hold and by 1945 a building had been located. At a time when the expectation of a woman’s role was just beginning to change in the aftermath of World War II, two women were chosen to lead what would become the finest culinary college in the world. Frances Roth, a prosecuting attorney with a reputation for making short work of difficult tasks and the distinction of being the first female member of the Connecticut Bar Association, took the helm at the Institute. Within the first year, Katharine Angell joined the school’s board. She served as chairman of the board from 1950 until 1966. The wife of then Yale University President James Rowland Angell, Mrs. Angell had the ability to convince contributors of the value of a quality culinary school, and in so doing, helped the fledgling institute quickly grow in size and reputation.
Throughout the years, The Culinary Institute of America has recruited faculty from around the globe. Many cultures are represented on campus and we continue to seek diversity in both faculty and student body, as well as in our staff. To enhance diversity and inclusiveness, the CIA has established a “Diversity Council.” This council has been charged with developing ideas and programs that will increase pluralism on campus. It is the goal of this council and the college as a whole to create a campus where all students, faculty and staff feel comfortable expressing themselves responsibly.
The Culinary Institute of America represents the vast diversity of the world embodied in food. The customs associated with food and drink are represented in all cultures worldwide. The college strives to attract students, faculty, and staff that represent a diverse background to enhance the excellence of the experience of our campus. Diversity is a core value included in our mission statement. The CIA actively promotes diversity with respect to ethnic and national origin, race, color, disability, religion, gender, socioeconomic background, age, and sexual orientation. Through continuing efforts, we strive to provide a tolerant, civil, and inclusive environment that celebrates the world’s cultures.
A diverse campus is recognized as important to the success of the CIA as are the ingredients of our food. Bringing a wide range of culinary scholars and chefs to campus is consistent with our mission of providing the world’s premier culinary education. Developing a curriculum that represents multiculturalism is priority to our mission. It is our goal and duty to create a welcoming, tolerant campus free of bias and discrimination which fosters respect and consideration. Our students can only grow in an environment that encourages freedom of expression with responsibility and embraces all cultures while celebrating the uniqueness of each individual.