Johnson & Wales vs. C.I.A.

Mar 2, 2021
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Dear All:

Our son, who is now 20, has learning disabilities.

He has been baking since age 9, had a small dog biscuit business, and is currently finishing a 26 hour certificate baking/pastry program. He also has worked 1 to 3 days a week at a highly ranked local bakery.

This summer he has a 3 month internship at a catering company working with a pastry team of 6.

He will then be doing a one year internship away from home preferably in a hotel pastry internship program (he had interest from a hotel this summer but didn't want to be away from home.)

Then he is intent upon going to Culinary Institute of America.

I've noted that Johnson and Wales has robust accommodations for students with disabilities, and I don't see the same at CIA.

So I'd appreciate any feedback or advice! Thanks!
Jun 22, 2017
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It depends on the type of work and places he wants to work at after graduation.

CIA campus in St. Helena is smaller that New York. Some of the internships will be at the most noted bakeries in the country, like Bouchon Bakery in Yountville. There are also additional baking training resources here Artisan Baking Center [Keith and Nick Giusto], San Francisco Baking Institute [Michael Suas]. These are run by master bakers with international reputation for excellence. They also bring in guest pastry chefs on the international level.

It's best to call the each institution and talk to their admissions team about your son‘s particular needs. if you feel the school might be a good fit, then plan a visit. it’s not just the school but the surrounding community you need take into consideration. Remember he’s going to live in the community while he attends school. You want to make sure the community is a good fit for him as well.

I live a few miles from St Helena‘s CIA campus. I’ve taken classes there. This is a very small community. But this also a major tourist destination. So this community is unique in that aspect. So those are the things you need to explore when you check out a school and it’s community.

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