Culinary News from The Culinary Institute of America

Future CIA Students Sweep SkillsUSA Cooking Competition

High School Culinary Champions to Enroll This Fall; Current and Future Students Place in Restaurant Service Category

Media Contact:

Jeff Levine
Communications Manager

Hyde Park, NY – Recent high school graduates who are continuing their education at The Culinary Institute of America swept the top three spots at the 2015 SkillsUSA national championship in Culinary Arts. For their success, all three earned CIA scholarships to the world’s premier culinary college, including a full-tuition scholarship for national secondary school winner Hyeonseo “Jerry” Jo of Columbia, MO.

Jo begins his CIA studies in September. (Coincidentally, last year’s champion is also from Columbia. Chormaic Sullivan recently completed his freshman year at the CIA.) Second-place winner Joshua Blochowski of Maumee, OH started at the CIA on July 7 with the support of a $4,000 a year scholarship. Dominic DeMuro of Elizabethtown, NY, earned $3,500 a year by taking third place nationally. DeMuro begins his studies at the CIA in October.

“We are thrilled to have the top three SkillsUSA culinary competitors all enroll at The Culinary Institute of America this year,” said Senior Director of Admissions Rachel Birchwood. “Their excellent culinary skills combined with the education they will receive at the world’s premier culinary college is a winning combination.”

SkillsUSA competitions in 100 fields were held in Louisville, KY on June 24 and 25. In Culinary Arts, competitors prepared both hot and cold food, creating a four-course menu. Competitors were rated on the quality and flavor of their prepared items, as well as their organization, knife skills, cooking techniques, creative presentation, and food safety practices.

One current and one future CIA student each placed in the Restaurant Service category, which focuses on both technical service skills and guest relations, involving table setup, greeting, reservations procedures, describing food and drink items, taking orders, and serving and clearing multiple courses. CIA junior Jacqueline Doucette took third in the post-secondary division and Stratham, NH’s Christine Avery, who starts at the CIA in September, was third in the high school competition. Each earned scholarships of $3,500 a year.

SkillsUSA is the national organization for students in trade, industrial, technical, and health occupations education. It sponsors annual SkillsUSA Championships to recognize the achievements of career and technical education students and to encourage them to strive for excellence and pride in their chosen occupations.

Photo Caption & Hi-Res Image:

The top three winners in the 2015 SkillsUSA high school culinary competition will all be attending college at The Culinary Institute of America. They are, from left, silver medalist Joshua Blochowski (Maumee,OH), gold medal winner Jerry Jo (Columbia, MO), and bronze medalist Dominic DeMuro (Elizabethtown, NY). (Photo credit: Courtesy SkillsUSA)
View hi-res image >

Founded in 1946, The Culinary Institute of America is the world’s premier culinary college. Dedicated to driving leadership development for the foodservice and hospitality industry, the independent, not-for-profit CIA offers associate degrees in culinary arts and baking and pastry arts; bachelor’s degree majors in management, culinary science, and applied food studies; and executive education through its Food Business School. Its conferences and consulting services have made the CIA the think tank of the food industry in the areas of health & wellness, sustainability, world cuisines & cultures, and professional excellence & innovation. The college also offers certificate programs and courses for professionals and enthusiasts. Its worldwide network of 48,000 alumni includes leaders in every area of foodservice and hospitality. The CIA has campuses in New York, California, Texas, and Singapore.

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