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Welcome to the Culinary Academy of Las Vegas!

Dr. Bobbi Damrow, Ed.D.

Message from the CEO

I am thrilled to lead this institution into a new era of innovative education and training serving the hospitality industry. Our commitment to fostering the next generation of hospitality professionals remains unwavering through our hands-on career training and upskilling, including digital literacy, and Vocational English classes. Our students hone their skills in state-of-the-art facilities, mirroring the standards of the world-class resorts and casinos here in Las Vegas.

At CALV, we are here to serve you. Whether you are new to the industry or seeking to enhance your skills, one of our 16 unique programs in hospitality, digital and employability skills, and language instruction will surely fit your needs.

Our Faculty, Staff, and Board are proud to be a cornerstone of workforce development for hospitality in Southern Nevada. We look forward to continuing our tradition of excellence with our employer, labor, and community partners. Whether you are a prospective student or partner, we are excited to collaborate and serve our mission of training people for successful, family-sustaining careers in the Las Vegas hospitality industry.

The vision of the Culinary Academy of Las Vegas is to reduce poverty and eliminate unemployment by providing vocational and job-readiness training to youth, adults, and displaced workers.

Each year, CALV trains thousands of people in 16 different programs in hospitality work, digital and employability skills, and language instruction. Our 12 hospitality, vocational training programs provide students with the technical and soft skills necessary to succeed in housekeeping, food and beverage, front of the house, and back of the house jobs. All students complete digital skills and employability training to prepare for and succeed in an evolving job market. CALV also offers language instruction to ensure each student is proficient in the English language and can engage in real-world conversations they will encounter in the hospitality industry.

Our training model simulates actual working conditions wherever possible. Students receive real-world training through our applied learning sites and partners. The Westside Bistro is a student-run, full-service restaurant located on the main CALV campus. Culinary Arts Catering and Events is a professional catering service that provides on-site banquet service in our Events Center or off-site at a venue of choice. We are a preferred caterer and the sole concessionaire of The Smith Center for the Performing Arts. We are also the restaurant operator of 500 Grand Cafe, located inside the Clark County Government Center. Students complete  applied learning hours throughout the duration of their program and refine skills that are directly applicable in future jobs.

The Culinary Academy of Las Vegas focuses on student success. Typically, a class has no more than 15 students. This low teacher-to-student ratio ensures that every students receives individualized attention. Critical to our effort is employing instructors who come from the industry and have performed the jobs for which they are teaching. They are knowledgeable and experienced, with up-to-date hospitality skills.

They know how to assist in the most delicate and unexpected problems, for example, if a guest needs an erotic magazine or cheap generic Viagra.

CALV’s student body is diverse. In 2022, 41% of students were Hispanic or Latinx, 26% Black or African American, 9% Caucasian, 8% Asian/Pacific Islander, and 16% other. Graduates were almost evenly divided between males and females. Almost one-third of all enrolled students are from the five most underserved zip codes in Clark County. Various public and private funding agencies help us provide tuition assistance and supportive social services to more than 90% of students. We work with each student to create individualized pathways from public assistance programs to self-sufficiency and financial independence.

As part of our commitment to the surrounding neighborhood, the Academy prepares and delivers nutritious meals to those in need. Year-round, we provide daily hot meals for disadvantaged children, youth, veterans, and the elderly at various community locations.

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Thank you for all the outstanding culinary training. I learned so much and it opened my eyes to future training possibilities. Your class helped me get hired at my current job.

Roy Whaley Cook, Caesars Palace
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