Ateneo de Manila University president Jose Ramon T. Villarin, S.J. (third from right) with (from left) Ateneo Center for Continuing Education executive director Marleth S. Calanog; Le Cordon Bleu Ateneo de Manila Institute (LCBAI) director Liza H. Morales; Ateneo Graduate School of Business dean Rodolfo P. Ang; Ateneo Professional Schools vice president Antonette Palma-Angeles and Le Cordon Bleu president and chief executive officer André J. Cointreau
Photo release
Le Cordon Bleu Ateneo de Manila opens its doors
(The Philippine Star) - April 11, 2019 - 3:51pm

MANILA, Philippines — Two of the world’s most distinguished educational institutions have merged to open a premium learning institution that will bring the finest culinary educational programs with premium business and management expertise. 

One of the world’s highly esteemed culinary institutes, Le Cordon Bleu (Paris) inaugurated its first venture in the Philippines with the Ateneo de Manila University on April 5. 

The event was attended by distinguished personalities and leaders from the academe, hotel, culinary and tourism industries. Leading the opening rites were Ateneo president Fr. Jose Ramon Villarin and Le Cordon Bleu president and CEO André J. Cointreau who flew in from Paris for the event. 

The much-awaited inauguration is the fruition of many years of preparation to set up a world-class education program in the Philippines that will synergize Le Cordon Bleu’s global culinary and hospitality management curriculum with Ateneo’s liberal arts foundation and expertise in entrepreneurship education. 

The Le Cordon Bleu Ateneo de Manila Institute (LCBAI) will help upgrade the skills and expertise of local enthusiasts and entrepreneurs. But Ateneo’s decision to enter into this rapidly growing field is not motivated by a simple desire to tap into a growing market — it is founded on a desire to contribute to national development by making a unique contribution to one of the pillars of our national economic development plan: the tourism and hospitality industry. 

Its goal is to design a unique Restaurant Entrepreneurship program that will not just train professionals for overseas deployment, but rather harness the rich potential of the Filipino entrepreneur to create economic opportunity and jobs right here in the country. 

Strong, compelling partnership 

This partnership between Le Cordon Bleu and the Ateneo de Manila is an offshoot of their shared hundred-year-old traditions of service and excellence, and commitment to quality. 

Founded in 1859 by the Society of Jesus, the Ateneo is one of the oldest universities in the Philippines. Le Cordon Bleu was founded in 1895 and is the oldest culinary school in the world. 

These shared values provide the strongest of foundations to ensure an enduring partnership that can make a difference in the Philippine hospitality industry. 

The LCBAI combines the Ateneo’s strong liberal arts tradition and expertise in management and entrepreneurship education with Le Cordon Bleu’s expertise and global perspective in cuisine, gastronomy and hospitality. The Institute will tap into the international network of Le Cordon Bleu not just for curriculum development, but also for faculty recruitment, graduate placement and international internships. 

The Ateneo de Manila will be investing in excess of P150 million for the two campuses planned for this joint venture effort, sparing no cost in infrastructure development and the acquisition of top-of-the-line equipment for the two campuses. 

The first facility, inaugurated on April 5, occupies over 1,000 square meters on the ground floor of Arete, at the Loyola Heights, QC campus of the Ateneo. It currently includes a variety of cuisine and pastry kitchens, demonstration rooms and lecture rooms. 

A teaching restaurant and wine bar are slated for opening later this year. A second facility, slated for construction in the latter half of 2019, will sit on another 1,000 square meters, this time in the Ateneo Professional Schools building in Rockwell Center, Makati City. 

The size and scale of the facilities being constructed for LCBAI will ensure that every student’s learning is maximized because of a one-isto-one correspondence of student to kitchen work station, something most culinary schools are unable to provide. 

Under the leadership of Dean Rudy Ang, day to day operations of LCBA will be managed by its Institute director Liza Morales, and its technical director, master chef Thierry Le Baut. 

LCBAI further sharpens its vision/ mission and alignment with industry requirements through an advisory board made up of highly esteemed and seasoned industry leaders: Chef Myrna Dizon-Segismundo, owner and executive chef, New Manila; chef Robby Goco, executive chef and managing director of Cyma Group of Restaurants,Olivia LimpeAw, president and CEO of Destileria Limtuaco, chef Josefina “Jessie” Sincioco, president and CEO of Chef Jessie Restaurants, Steve Tamayo, owner of Tamayo’s Catering and Joseph Tanbuntiong, country business group head-Philippines of Jollibee Foods Corporation.

Undergraduate degree program 

As its initial offering, LCBAI will be offering a four-year undergraduate Bachelor of Science degree in Restaurant Entrepreneurship through the John Gokongwei School of Management of the Loyola Schools of the Ateneo. This program embeds the international Le Cordon Bleu curriculum within the Ateneo liberal arts curriculum. It will focus on integrating theory and handson practical experience with a strong management and service orientation. It will teach tools and techniques but maintain Ateneo’s tradition of formation of the total person. It will provide a global perspective into cuisine, gastronomy and hospitality management, and is targeted at young men and women who would like to set up their own restaurants and food-related businesses. 

The Restaurant Entrepreneurship program has the same requirements for the degree as in Le Cordon Bleu’s equivalent degrees anywhere in the world. It carries the same core, holistic, and formative liberal arts curriculum that is the bedrock of the Ateneo college curriculum and that is also required for every other Ateneo degree. All applicants must pass the Ateneo college entrance examination and go through the same rigorous Ateneo admissions process as everyone else. Consequently, students will receive two diplomas at graduation: one from the Ateneo, and a second one from Le Cordon Bleu. 

Twenty-two students are currently enrolled in the program, with a new, much larger intake of freshmen projected for August 2019. 

With the Center for Continuing Education of the Ateneo Graduate School of Business, LCBAI will also be offering a wide variety of professional diploma and certificate courses, including some specialized and lifestyle-oriented courses, with durations running anywhere from one day to 15 months. 

Many of the leaders of the hospitality industry in the Philippines are graduates of Le Cordon Bleu programs—programs that they had to take at one of its global campuses, in Paris, Tokyo, Australia, or somewhere else in the world. Now, these world-class programs are available right here in Manila. Welcome to the Philippines, Le Cordon Bleu! 

The LCBAI is now accepting students for SY 2019 to 2020. 

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