WVU Parkersburg hosts ribbon cutting ceremony for new Culinary Academy

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Parkersburg, W.Va. 1/24/13 – West Virginia Community and Technical College System (CTCS) chancellor James Skidmore joined West Virginia University at Parkersburg president Marie Foster Gnage, Ph.D., and other officials for the grand opening of the college’s new Culinary Academy. The ribbon cutting ceremony took place Wednesday, Jan. 23 at 10 a.m. to celebrate the new facility.

The associate of applied science in culinary arts will be the first program offered in the college’s newly renovated downtown center on Market Street. The program will be blend traditional classroom and online courses, and foods grown by the diversified agriculture students will be used to prepare foods.

“We have developed a program that is aligned with high quality industry outcomes and have instituted an entry process into the program that will be competitive,” said Dr. Rhonda Tracy, senior vice president for academic affairs. “We hired an excellent program coordinator, Gene Evans, and have the latest in culinary equipment.”

Curriculum will include all phases of cooking and provide students a local and more affordable option for culinary arts education. The downtown center includes a complete commercial kitchen for student training purposes and a small bistro area where second-year students will prepare and serve gourmet meals on a limited basis. Students enrolled in the program can seek a one-year certificate or a two-year associate’s degree.

Classes will be heavily laboratory based and filled with hands-on learning using industry-based standards. Students obtaining the associate’s degree can also receive their Certified Culinarian designation through the American Culinary Federation. Students interested in applying can download the application: http://www.wvup.edu/Academics/technology/culinary_application2012.doc.

ZMM Architects and Engineers designed the facility which was contracted to Tedco Construction of Carnegie, Pa. Funding was provided by grants from the CTCS, the Appalachian Regional Commission and the Sisters of St. Joseph Charitable Fund.

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