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Student Support – Diamond Culinary Academy
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Student Support

We support student chefs. That’s why we’re getting to know the next generation of chefs, today. In the 45 years that the McIlhenny Company Culinary Student Scholarship program has existed, we have awarded 108 students with funds to help them explore their passion and further their education. Read about some of your peers who are making a difference in the foodservice industry and impacting our communities for the better with the support of McIlhenny Company.

Past Student Events

Testimonials from Scholarship Recipients

Gerald Ford
The McIlhenny Scholarship let me focus on cooking in one of the greatest culinary cities in the world, not tuition payments. For that, I’m grateful.

Gerald Ford

Sous Chef at The Everglades Club

2001 McIlhenny Scholarship Recipient

“I received the McIlhenny Scholarship in 2001 when I was completing my associate’s degree at the CIA. The scholarship couldn’t have come at a better time. It enabled me to devote time to learning and honing my skills in the kitchen instead of worrying about tuition. At that time, I competed in Les Amis d’Escoffier, a classical culinary competition in New York City. I was fortunate to win, which led to a stage at one of the original modern cuisine concepts—Moulin de Mougins in Cannes, France. It was an incredible experience. The McIlhenny Scholarship let me focus on cooking in one of the greatest culinary cities in the world, not tuition payments. For that, I’m grateful.”

“TABASCO® Original Red Sauce has been a staple in most of the kitchens I’ve worked in and has served me well throughout the years. It’s a great source of heat and flavor in so many applications. And since its launch, TABASCO® Chipotle Pepper Sauce has also become a staple in my kitchen.”

As a struggling culinary student, the scholarship was life changing.

Karla Boetel

Professor, Iowa Culinary Institute at Des Moines Area Community College

2001 McIlhenny Scholarship Recipient

“It was a really proud moment when I learned that I won the McIlhenny Scholarship. At the time, I was a group leader and on the Dean’s List. I considered myself a non-traditional student, as I returned to the CIA a second time at 26 years old on an All-American Apple Pie Scholarship, which is actually what allowed me to go back for a four-year degree. My professor had nominated me for the McIlhenny Scholarship, so it felt even more rewarding to earn it. As a struggling culinary student, the scholarship was life changing. It allowed me to get my education without constantly worrying about financial obligations. Since graduating, I’ve become a culinary instructor. I’m proud to share my experience and education with my students and hope that I’m able to help my students the way my teacher helped me.”

“Growing up, TABASCO® brand Original Red Sauce was always available in our kitchen and had a place on our table. I’ve had the opportunity to visit Louisiana a few times and connect with the regional cooking styles. When I attended CIA and got better connected to the TABASCO® brand, I learned more about the various flavor profiles. TABASCO® brand Pepper sauces are a great way to amp up flavor.”