ARAMARK Chef receives top certification

Joe Bruno, Executive Chef and Production Manager, has recently earned the prestigious ProChef Certification through his dedication, hard work and culinary skills.

The Culinary Institute of America (CIA) ProChef certification process aids in helping talented chefs attain the additional skills, training and tools needed to excel in their careers. The exams were held in New York on Jan. 3-6, with certifications given at the completion ceremony held shortly after the final exam.   

 “It was one of the hardest and most stressful weeks I think I’ve ever had,” said Bruno. “It was kind of like taking our culinary school experience and jamming it all into a four day period.”

The ProChef Certification program is a comprehensive development and culinary skills verification program which measures core culinary, managerial and financial acumen, including a chef’s skill in taste, proper cooking methods, authenticity, plating, use of all ingredients, hygiene and disposal of food waste.

“I definitely learned a lot more about my profession and what I’m capable of doing beyond what I learned in culinary school,” said Bruno. “Though a lot of it was review, a lot of it was also new to me.”

ARAMARK began a partnership with the CIA years ago and sponsored Bruno’s program participation.

“We are extremely proud of Chef Bruno who worked so hard to achieve CIA ProChef certification,” said Martin Balisteri, Food Service Director. “We look forward to him sharing his culinary expertise and skills with the entire Southeastern Louisiana University campus community.”

Each chef received a 64 page study guide two weeks prior the exams with a list of glossary terms, as well as some generalized expectations.

The certification program exam included seven written exams as well as four practical exams over the course of four days.

The practical exams required the chefs to prepare a three to four course meal using ingredients from various regions.

“I feel relieved and at the same time stressed because one of the national executives has asked me to participate in the ProChef III class,” said Bruno. “ProChef III is a more intense experience that requires the chefs to master the food from various regions.”

Bruno was able to bypass ProChef I and has just completed ProChef II.

“I plan on making a career with ARAMARK because it’s huge and there are endless opportunities,” said Bruno. “I would like to get to the regional culinary director level or national level at some point in my career.”

For more information about the CIA visit their website at