The Culinary Institute of America (CIA), San Antonio is about to unveil its second major. Twenty students begin their studies toward an Associate in Applied Science (AAS) degree in baking and pastry arts on Monday, August 19. The baking and pastry arts degree follows the successful launch of the college's associate degree program in culinary arts in San Antonio in 2011.

The program is based on the proven curriculum offered at the CIA's campuses in Hyde Park, NY and St. Helena, CA. Classes emphasize extensive hands-on experience in baking and pastry techniques, as students learn the production of all manner of breads, cakes, pastries, desserts, and confections. Additional studies cover topics such as Principles of Design, Baking Ingredients and Equipment Technology, and Nutrition, as well as leadership courses such as Introduction to Management, Menu Development, Introduction to Customer Service, and Controlling Costs & Purchasing Food. Near the end of the sophomore year, students gain real-world experience in the CIA Bakery Café and Nao, two restaurants open to the public on the CIA campus at Pearl.

The expansion of the CIA's baking and pastry program to San Antonio is under the direction of Alain Dubernard, department chair for baking and pastry arts at the CIA San Antonio. Chef Dubernard joined the college's faculty in 2004 after a celebrated career as a pastry chef and entrepreneur in London, Paris, and Mexico City. He taught at the Hyde Park campus and served as associate dean for baking and pastry arts there before moving to the San Antonio campus to oversee the creation of this new baking and pastry program.

Generous scholarships for CIA degree programs are available through the college's El Sueño initiative and other financial aid opportunities. View information about the program or call 1-800-CULINARY.

Students entering classes this month are scheduled to graduate in April 2015. The first graduation for the AAS program in culinary arts at CIA San Antonio was held this past April.