Dean SheremetDean Sheremet, ex-husband of LeAnn Rimes, has graduated at the top of his class from Manhattan's French Culinary Institute.

Dean, who moved out of the couple's Nashville home when they split last December, and relocated to the Big Apple, completed six months of training, which included an intense 600 hours and 120 classes.

"I won perfect attendance, graduating with distinction and highest cumulative score. Triple threat!" he excitedly told Us Weekly.

As class valedictorian, Dean gave a speech to fellow graduates. "I dedicated the award to my classmates, who I learned just as much from as the program," he says.

The 29-year-old former back-up dancer says he has set his sights on a food-related career. "I want to apprentice somewhere. I would love to do a travel, food, lifestyle show someday."

The couple's marriage is due to officially be dissolved in June of this year. LeAnn and Dean were married February 23, 2002 and separated in July, after LeAnn began a well-publicized relationship with actor Eddie Cibrian.