With its pledge of $1 million to The Culinary Institute of America announced today, Dunkin’ Brands, Inc. becomes a founding donor of the college’s “El Sueño” initiative. The Dunkin’ Brands gift, to be paid over five years beginning in 2009, will support baking and pastry kitchens at both the CIA’s new campus in San Antonio, Texas, and main campus in Hyde Park, New York.

“El Sueño” (“The Dream”) has been created by the CIA with a goal of elevating Latin American cuisines to their rightful place among the great cuisines of the world. The CIA-San Antonio is quickly becoming the leading education and research center promoting Latin American culinary diversity in the U.S. foodservice industry. The two CIA campuses also work in concert to prepare students to enter the culinary profession, providing both the foundation and the opportunity for their career success.

“Dunkin’ Brands is proud to support the educational facilities that will help to advance the growing influence of Latino cuisine,” says Jon Luther, Chairman & CEO of Dunkin’ Brands. “We deeply respect the CIA’s rich history; President Ryan’s proven leadership; and the steadfast dedication to quality education provided by the administration, faculty, and alumni to benefit students from around the world.”

“Creating an opportunity for aspiring Latino chefs and bakers to receive a quality education strengthens their preparation for becoming culinary leaders, and that is our unwavering promise and commitment,” says CIA President Dr. Tim Ryan. “Central to achieving this goal is the establishment of facilities and curriculum that embrace Latin American culinary, baking, and pastry traditions.”

Teaching about Latin American pastries and sweets requires specialization –- from the Peruvian coast alone, there are more than 250 traditional desserts. The anticipated completion date for construction of the kitchens at the two campuses is 2010.

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