Culinary News from The Culinary Institute of America

Google Exec Speaks to CIA Baccalaureate Graduates

Michiel Bakker Delivers Keynote Address

Hyde Park, NY – Michiel Bakker, director of global programs for real estate and workplace services at Google, addressed bachelor’s degree recipients at The Culinary Institute of America on December 19. Mr. Bakker leads his company’s renowned workplace programs, providing services and experiences to help employees thrive.

Prior to taking his current position in 2017, the native of the Netherlands led Google’s food program for five years. His management career in hospitality also included 17 years with Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide.

“Map out your desired future but be prepared and ready yourself for the unexpected and the unknown, as life will happen,” said Mr. Bakker, reminding graduates that Google didn’t even exist when he was in college. “All of you have so many choices ahead of you; not just today, but over the years to come, as you decide what to do and as you progress in your professional life and career. What impact do you want to and hope to make?”

Active in the CIA’s Menus of Change Business Leadership Council, Mr. Bakker is involved in several initiatives surrounding food, health, and sustainability. He is also a member of Food100, a network of diverse future-oriented food pioneers and influencers. Mr. Bakker earned a Silver Plate Award from the International Foodservice Manufacturers Association in 2018 and the Bologna Award for sustainability and food in 2017.

Watch the entire CIA commencement ceremony online, including Michiel Bakker’s address to recipients of degrees in Food Business Management, Culinary Science, Applied Food Studies, and Culinary Arts.

Photo Caption and Hi-Res Image:

Google executive Michiel Bakker gives advice to bachelor’s degree recipients of The Culinary Institute of America during commencement exercises at the CIA’s New York campus on December 18, 2019. (Photo credit: CIA/Phil Mansfield)
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Media Contact:

Jeff Levine
Communications Writer

About The Culinary Institute of America:

Founded in 1946, The Culinary Institute of America is the world’s premier culinary college. Dedicated to developing leaders in foodservice and hospitality, the independent, not-for-profit CIA offers master’s, bachelor’s, and associate degrees with majors in culinary arts, baking & pastry arts, food business management, hospitality management, culinary science, and applied food studies. The college also offers executive education, certificate programs, and courses for professionals and enthusiasts. Its conferences, leadership initiatives, and consulting services have made the CIA the think tank of the food industry and its worldwide network of more than 50,000 alumni includes innovators in every area of the food world. The CIA has locations in New York, California, Texas, and Singapore.

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