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March 2015

Career fair
Taking Care of Business: Our Largest Career Fair Yet!
Another record-breaking career fair is in the books! The Spring 2015 Career Fair featured a whopping 71 different hospitality companies and businesses with approximately 197 recruiters vying to hire Hilton College students. Hosted at the Hilton University of Houston on February 19, the fair was attended by about 450 students, including 56 student volunteers who assisted with event logistics. What’s more, 21 companies held private interviews with select students before and after the fair for internships, management and staff positions. Following the fair, the luncheon boasted one of Hilton College’s own as the keynote speaker, proud alum Ernest Stovall (‘95), executive director of sales for MGM Grand in Las Vegas. Of course, none of this would have happened without the hard work of Director of Career Development & Placement Lori Osborn, Career Counselor Colleen Gleeson and Graduate Assistant Martin Luk, who continue to bring in recruiters from all sectors of the industry year round to hire our students. Kudos to our outstanding Career Development & Placement team for providing students with unmatched opportunities for career success and yet another record-breaking career fair! (Photo: Taylor Wiley)
Provost research
Provost Recognizes Standout Faculty Researchers
Seven standout faculty researchers were honored by UH Provost Paula Myrick Short in February at a Provost Faculty Recognition Luncheon. Provost Short held these special luncheons with honorees from colleges across the University. Honorees were selected from a group of candidates submitted by the respective deans of each college. Candidates were chosen based on their research efforts, specifically the amount of research and any media attention, community engagement and/or grantsmanship garnered as a result of their efforts. At Hilton College’s luncheon, which took place in the Fred Parks Boardroom, Provost Short spoke individually with honorees about their research and presented them with a plaque commending them for their efforts. Pictured left to right at the luncheon are Dean John Bowen, Interim Associate Dean Mary Dawson, Dr. Priyanko Guchait, Dr. Yoon Koh, Dr. Cristian Morosan, Dr. Jay Neal, Provost Short, Dr. Ki-Joon Back and Dr. Juan Madera. Congrats to all, and keep up the good work! (Photo: Provost’s Office)
Hilton Execs meeting
Students Meet, Mingle With Hilton Worldwide Execs
A group of Hilton Worldwide executives from across the country got a firsthand look at Hilton College—many for the very first time—when they met for a series of corporate meetings at the Hilton University of Houston last month. The executives—leaders from all of the Hilton Worldwide brands—were treated to personalized tours of the College by members of the 2015 Hospitality Hall of Honor student management team. The executives were particularly impressed with the Spec’s Beverage & Food Appreciation Laboratory and the Hospitality Industry Archives! The Hall of Honor students also got the chance to network with the Hilton leaders during a special brunch meeting at the hotel, where they introduced themselves to the group, talked about their career goals and shared why they chose to attend the College. Shout out to the Hall of Honor team for representing the HC so well, and thanks to Hilton Worldwide for their continued support of our program! (Photo: Taylor Wiley)
Ernest Stovall
Alumni Spotlight: Hotel Sales Exec Wins Big in Sin City
When it comes to hotel sales, working in Las Vegas is like hitting the jackpot. Proud alum Ernest Stovall (’95) knows that firsthand. He was recently named the executive director of sales for the iconic MGM Grand. When he enrolled at Hilton College, Stovall thought he’d go into restaurants, but those plans changed once he completed an internship with Hyatt Regency on the Riverwalk in San Antonio. After graduation, he entered Hyatt’s corporate management trainee program and was placed at the Hyatt Regency Atlanta as an assistant banquet setup manager. From there, he moved on to the Adam’s Mark in Dallas and the Gaylord Texan, working his way up from banquets to convention services to sales along the way. Everywhere he went, Stovall moved up in the ranks and earned a reputation for his dedication and hard work. It wasn’t long before Vegas came calling and he was recruited to join the team at the Venetian/Palazzo as the director of their East Coast sales group. When a longtime mentor was hired at MGM Resorts, the door opened for Stovall to become the executive director of sales. Now, he oversees 16 sales managers at one of the largest hotels in the world. Stovall says his career trajectory would have been impossible if he hadn’t been willing to buckle down and start from the bottom—no matter how unglamorous it was. “This isn’t an industry that rewards you in the beginning of your career. You have to be able to put in the long hours and work hard. It’s not a 9-to-5 kind of job,” he said. At the College’s Spring 2015 Career Fair Luncheon, Stovall—the keynote speaker—also hammered home the importance of networking. “Networking is what will help you move up in your career. Never, ever miss an opportunity to get your name out there,” he told the crowd. Thanks, Ernest, for staying connected and providing such a great example for our future hotel executives. You make Hilton College proud! (Photo: Taylor Wiley)
Brotherhood of the Knights of the VineBrotherhood of Knights
Cheers to the Knights of the Vine!
Here’s some news worth toasting: Two deserving Hilton College students were awarded generous scholarships this year, thanks to the Houston Chapter of the Brotherhood of the Knights of the Vine! The Knights, a philanthropic wine organization dedicated to promoting fine wines and wine education, is the nation’s oldest wine-oriented brotherhood with 17 chapters worldwide. A great supporter of the College, the Houston chapter established the Brotherhood of the Knights of the Vine Scholarship Endowment here in 2011, which awards scholarships annually. Those recipients are invited to a special brunch to meet and network with members of the organization. Pictured left to right at the 2015 brunch are Hilton College Development Coordinator Dianca Chase, scholarship recipients Matthew Bauman and Gabrielle Fox, Grand Commander of the Knights of the Vine Buddy Hagner, and Hilton College Director of Development Miguel Cabrera. The brunch was part of the Brotherhood’s Assemblage weekend, which took place January 24-25 at the Royal Sonesta. The Assemblage also included a fundraising gala, which was staffed by a group of student volunteers and benefited the College. In addition to the scholarship support, the Knights have also committed to help fund the College’s new brewing and fermentation lab, which is in the planning stages. Congratulations to the 2015 scholarship recipients and many thanks to the Brotherhood of the Knights of the Vine for their continued support! (Photo: Brotherhood of the Knights of the Vine)