Thao Rich

Associate Instructor

JWU Faculty Since 2016

Thao Rich

Contact Info


Thao Rich’s area of expertise is cookies, as she is known as the “Cookie Goddess” by her colleagues, and she has a cult cookie following inside the JWU community.

Aside from teaching Cookies & Petits Fours, she enjoys teaching a wide range of pastry skills from basic foundations to cakes to plated desserts. She enjoys tapping into her Asian heritage by co-advising the Cooking Asia Club; she especially enjoys teaching and molding freshmen students with organized and detailed classroom demonstrations infused with everyday life skills.

An alum of JWU’s Baking & Pastry Arts bachelor of science program, Rich has honed her skills in prominent Boston-area restaurants and bakeries. In 2011, she began her teaching career at Le Cordon Bleu in Cambridge, Massachusetts. This facilitated her return to Johnson & Wales as an instructor.

She enjoys being a mom to two boys. When she is not baking, she likes cooking, crafts, home improvement projects, and yoga.


  • B.S. BPA, Johnson & Wales University

Each student has a different takeaway from every demo, lesson, or course. A former student returned to say hello one semester and said that her a-ha moment in my class was when I described the importance of freshly ground black pepper as opposed to using pre-ground pepper. It struck me that a conversational tangent during a demo could be one of the most memorable moments a student takes from my class. Each individual has such a different experience in what could be a demo I've done dozens of times; this moment of reminiscence between myself and this student really brought me clarity and joy.


  • BPA1701 Foundations of Baking & Pastry
  • BPA1710 Principles of Cake Decorating & Design
  • BPA1720 Plated Desserts
  • BPA2710 Advanced Pastry Applications
  • BPA2720 Artisan Café
  • FSM1165 The Food Safety Manager

Extra Curricular Roles

Co-Advisor, Cooking Asia Club