Culinary Arts Earns Accreditation from American Culinary Federation
The American Culinary Federation Education Foundation (ACFEF) Accrediting Commission recently renewed a seven-year grant for HFC's Associate of Applied Science in Culinary Arts Degree program.
The Culinary Arts program received its first grant of accreditation in 1994. Culinary Arts students graduating from the associate degree or bachelor of science degree – HFC’s first four-year degree program launched earlier this year – receive the Certified Culinarian (CC) designation at the time of graduation.
“American Culinary Federation certification represents the national standard of excellence for chefs and provides graduates a recognized credential to enter and advance in the culinary and hospitality field with employers of choice,” said Eric Gackenbach, HFC academic coordinator, Culinary Arts & Hotel/Restaurant Management program.
ACFEF accreditation is a process of self-review for improvement of academic quality and public accountability of culinary arts programs. This review occurs every three to five years or every seven years. It involves the following:
- A self-study of the program using the standards of the ACFEF Accrediting Commission;
- A peer review of the program to gather evidence of quality and to verify documents submitted in the self-study; and
- A decision/action by the ACFEF Accrediting Commission to grant accreditation, to grant with conditions, to accept a deferral request or to not accredit a program.
ACFEF accreditation is recognized by the Council for Higher Education Accreditation (CHEA), an association of 3,000 degree-granting colleges/universities and recognized 60 institutional and program-accrediting organizations. CHEA is the only non-governmental higher education organization in the United States (U.S.) that undertakes the scrutiny and affirmation of the quality of regional, faith-related, career-related and program-accrediting organizations.
The American Culinary Federation, Inc. (ACF), a professional organization for chefs and cooks, was founded in 1929 in New York City. The ACF is an organization based on promoting the professional image of American chefs worldwide through education of culinarians at all levels.
In 1976, the ACF forever changed the hospitality industry by successfully advocating for the elevation of the position of the executive chef from domestic service status to the professional category in the U.S. Dept. of Labor’s Dictionary of Official Titles. Since this change, the culinary industry and the ACF itself have grown tremendously. Today, the ACF is the largest professional chef organization in North America made up of more than 17,500 members who belong to more than 150 regional chapters.
HFC maintains open enrollment to anyone with a high school diploma or equivalent. After earning acceptance to HFC, students can enroll in the associate degree program in Culinary Arts and the associate degree program in Hotel/Restaurant Management as their program of study in either August, January and May.
Flexible scheduling allows students to attend full-time or part-time during the day, evenings or weekends to fit their varied and changing responsibilities. After approximately two semesters and completion of the Culinary Skills Certificate (or a transfer equivalent), students can request admission to the Bachelor of Science in Culinary Arts degree program.