High School Culinary and
Baking Champions to Enroll this Fall; Current Student Wins
Restaurant Service Category
Hyde Park, NY – To the winners go the spoils.
of Columbia, MO won the 2014 SkillsUSA championship in
Culinary Arts in the high school division and Maria Buko of Saginaw,
MI was the winner in the Commercial Baking category. Both gold medalists
will soon be enrolling at The Culinary
Institute of America in Hyde Park, NY on full scholarships. Sullivan begins
his studies on September 9 and Buko’s first day of classes
is October 21.
The nationwide SkillsUSA competitions
in 99 fields were held in Kansas City, MO earlier this summer. In
competitors prepared both hot and cold food through the production of a
menu. Commercial baking required students to master a written exam as
well as hands-on
cake decorating and the production of breads, rolls, Danish, cookies,
and pies. Buko finished fourth last year before earning the gold
“The honor of being recognized as the best in the nation at what
I love is something I can only begin to describe,” said Sullivan, who is originally
from Portland, OR.
Both students call the CIA their dream college. “I’m super-excited
to come to the CIA. I looked at other schools and kept coming back to the CIA as
the only choice,” Buko said.
“The CIA has been the place I wished to attend since I started
looking into culinary schools. It’s going to help me reach my goals in life and
I wouldn’t want to go anywhere else,” concurred Sullivan.
The bronze medal winner in high school commercial baking is another
soon-to-be CIA student. David Howe of Lexington, MA enrolls on September 29.
A current CIA student also came up big in Kansas City. Leonela Montas, a junior from Bronx,
NY, won the Restaurant Service competition in the post-secondary division. It was
the first time a CIA student competed in this category, which focuses on both technical
service skills and guest relations, including table setup, greeting, reservations
procedures, describing food and drink items, taking orders, serving and clearing
multiple courses, and more.
Photo Caption and Hi-Res Image
Photo 1 (top photo): Chormaic Sullivan won the high school championship in
Culinary Arts at the 2014 SkillsUSA national
competition in Kansas City, MO. Sullivan, from Columbia, MO, begins his college
studies at The Culinary Institute of America in September. (Photo credit: L.G. Patterson/Recess, Inc.)
View hi-res image >
Photo 2: Maria Buko in action at the 2014 SkillsUSA competition in Kansas City, MO. Buko was the national
champion in the Commercial Baking category. The recent high school graduate
from Saginaw, MI starts her college studies at The Culinary Institute of
America in October. (Photo courtesy:
View hi-res image >
Founded in 1946, The Culinary Institute of America is an independent, not-for-profit
college offering associate and bachelor's degrees with majors in culinary arts,
baking and pastry arts, and culinary science, as well as certificate programs in
culinary arts and wine and beverage studies. As the world's premier culinary college,
the CIA provides thought leadership in the areas of health & wellness, sustainability,
and world cuisines & cultures through research and conferences. The CIA has
a network of 46,000 alumni that includes industry leaders such as Grant Achatz, Anthony Bourdain, Roy Choi,
Cat Cora, Dan Coudreaut, Steve Ells, Charlie Palmer, and Roy Yamaguchi. The CIA also offers
courses for professionals and enthusiasts, as well as consulting services in support
of innovation for the foodservice and hospitality industry. The college has campuses
in Hyde Park, NY; St. Helena, CA; San Antonio, TX; and Singapore.
SkillsUSA helps students discover and grow their career
passions. As a nationwide partnership of students, instructors, and
together, SkillsUSA works to ensure America has a skilled
workforce. It helps every student excel. The nationwide career and
(CTE) student organization serves more than 300,000 high school,
college, and postsecondary
students—and their instructors—in technical, skilled, and service
programs. CTE is learning that works for America. SkillsUSA has the
active support of more than 600 corporations, trade associations,
and labor unions at the national level. Over 11.6 million people have
members of SkillsUSA since its founding as The Vocational
Industrial Clubs of America in 1965. SkillsUSA programs
teach leadership, citizenship, and character development to complement
skill training. The organization emphasizes respect for the dignity of
workmanship, scholarship, and safety.
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