The Institute of Culinary Education Celebrates 2024 Graduates in This Year's Commencement Ceremonies


– Acclaimed chefs Mashama Bailey and Evan Funke will inspire the next generation of culinary and hospitality leaders –

NEW YORK (May 13, 2024) – The Institute of Culinary Education (ICE) will celebrate the achievements of the 2023-2024 graduating class at commencement ceremonies for its New York City and Los Angeles campuses later this month. Graduates have completed at least one of ICE's in person or online diploma or Associates degree programs in various fields of study, including Culinary Arts, Pastry & Baking Arts, Plant-Based Culinary Arts, Restaurant & Culinary Management and Hospitality & Hotel Management.Honorary speakers include culinary trailblazer Mashama Bailey and alumni chef Gabrielle Chappel at the New York City ceremony, and renowned chef Evan Funke and graduate Megan Fogarty at the Los Angeles commencement.

"I'm proud to host another ceremony to honor all the excellent and hard work our students have completed and achieved during their programs," said ICE CEO Rick Smilow. "This next generation of chefs is talented and ready to tackle the industry. We're thrilled that they will be inspired by such culinary icons as Mashama Bailey and Evan Funke, who are sure to motivate them as they embark on their careers." 

Bailey is a culinary visionary and graduate from ICE's Culinary Arts program in 2001. She is the Executive Chef and Co-Founder of The Grey, The Grey Market, Diner Bar and the forthcoming restaurant in Paris; the Vice Chairman of the Edna Lewis Foundation and the winner of two James Beard Awards (Best Chef Southeast and Outstanding Chef in America). She is also the author of Black, White, and The Grey: The Story of an Unexpected Friendship and a Beloved Restaurant.

"I'm grateful for the opportunity to serve as the keynote speaker at this year's ICE commencement ceremony," said Bailey. "These students are the next generation of great chefs and it is my privilege to welcome them to the industry and impart some of the knowledge and advice that I've gained along my own journey from ICE's kitchens to where I am today."

In addition to Bailey, the New York City ceremony will feature alumni speaker Gabrielle Chappel. The Plant-Based Culinary Arts graduate is the winner of FOX's cooking competition show Next Level Chef, hosted by Chefs Nyesha Arrington, Richard Blais and Gordon Ramsay.

At the Los Angeles ceremony, graduates will hear from distinguished chef Evan Funke. He is the Executive Chef of Funke, Mother Wolf, Felix Trattoria, and Tre Dita at the St. Regis Chicago; co-executive producer on projects such as the documentary Funke and the docuseries Shape of Pasta, and is the author of the award-winning cookbook "American Sfoglino."

"Strong foundation is everything," said Funke. "The leadership at ICE provides a rich environment for students to extract the necessary skills to start their journey towards becoming a professional chef."

Megan Fogarty, the west coast graduate speaker, completed both the Culinary Arts and Restaurant & Culinary Management programs for a dual diploma in 2021. She is a sous-chef at Walter and Margarita Manzke's award-winning République.

The New York campus graduation will take place at Borough of Manhattan Community College's Tribeca Performing Arts Center on May 22 at 9 a.m., while the Los Angeles campus commencement will happen at the Beckman Auditorium at Caltech on May 20 at 5 p.m.

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About the Institute of Culinary Education
The Institute of Culinary Education (ICE) is one of the largest and most diverse culinary schools in the world with campuses in New York and Los Angeles. Established in 1975, ICE offers award-winning six- to 16-month in-person and online career training programs in Culinary Arts, Pastry & Baking Arts, Plant-Based Culinary Arts, Restaurant & Culinary Management and Hospitality & Hotel Management, in addition to professional development in Techniques of Artisan Bread Baking, The Art of Cake Decorating and Intensive Sommelier Training — with more than 18,000 alumni, many of whom are leaders in the industry. 

ICE also offers continuing education for culinary professionals, hosts more than 300 special events each year and is home to one of the world's largest recreational cooking, baking and beverage programs. ICE's 74,000-square-foot, cutting-edge campus in New York City and its 38,000-square-foot Los Angeles campus were designed for inspiration, creativity and community. Visit us at or join us on Instagram, Facebook, TikTok, Twitter and YouTube at @iceculinary to find your culinary voice.

Stephanie Fraiman
Public Relations Director
Institute of Culinary Education
(212) 847-0703