Bourdain, left, received his Honorary Doctorate from CIA President
(Photo: CIA/Phil Mansfield)
HYDE PARK – Chef and TV personality Anthony Bourdain, who took
his own life on Thursday, was a graduate of the Culinary Institute of
America class of 1978.
College spokesman Jeff Levine said Bourdain, 61, “often came to
campus to speak with students about food and world cultures, his career,
and the importance of authenticity in being a chief.”
On December 19, 2017, Bourdain was back at the Hyde Park campus giving
advice to the college’s bachelor’s degree candidates and received
an honorary Doctor of Humane Letters in Culinary Arts degree.
At that time, college President Tim Ryan called him “possibly the
most recognizable food personality on the plant.”
Upon receiving the degree, Bourdain said he was “very grateful”
for having attended the CIA. “It was incredibly important to me.
I had a good time here and I’m grateful for all of the skills I
learned and the experience I had.”
After beginning his culinary career as a dishwasher on Cape Cod during
summers while attending Vassar College, Bourdain enrolled in the CIA.
Following graduation, he spent more than two decades cooking at top New
York City restaurants.
During that time he began writing about his life in professional kitchens.
“The CIA extends its heartfelt condolences to Tony’s family,
loved ones, and friends,” Levine said.