Hospitality Leaders Learn From “World’s Best,” New Classes Available


A collaboration between Oregon State University-Cascades and Cornell University has warranted high praise for helping leaders of one of Oregon’s key industries sharpen their skills. The program lends experts from Cornell University, whose hospitality industry education program is among the most prestigious in the entire world, to OSU-Cascades to teach the campus executive education classes for tourism industry professionals.While only in its second year, the program is on a rapid incline and has had an effect on the community’s economy.

“To have this high-quality, professional education available at OSU to regional managers and owners it’s sort of unbelievable,” said Jeff Miller, CEO of Travel Portland and key orchestrator of the program.

New courses will become available in Summer 2012 and Fall 2013. To date, more than 40 hospitality leaders have completed the program, adding to the Cornell hotel school’s impressive resume as “world’s best.”

Hospitality professionals who have taken the course offerings at OSU-Cascades include managers and directors representing the hotel, restaurant, resort, vacation rental management, brewery, and tourism industries:

  • Michael J. Hraba, project management and communications for Waterford Hotels and Inns in San Francisco said, “I brought home real knowledge that impacts my day.Our group had really lacked any firm direction in marketing ourselves or our portfolio, whether to potential guests or owners. Now, we have a coordinated marketing effort in place to cross promote all our properties.”
  • Mike Tvedt, general manager at Anthony’s Homeport Restaurant in Richland, Wash., completed Tracey’s course on leadership.”I came away with a much clearer big picture,” he said. “I was able, then, to take that vision to the management team, and then to the hourly team members who make things happen every day.”
  • Carole Astley, industry relations manager with Travel Oregon in Salem, Ore., said “I came away with great new ways of looking at things from a leadership perspective. I problem-solve all day, and the course helped me delve into issues from a different angle.”
  • Peter Skrbek, director of finance for Deschutes Brewery in Bend, Ore., took a course in pricing. “That professionals in the Pacific Northwest are given access to leading academics in the hospitality management field is simply outstanding.” said Skrbek.

Posted by Markus Micheaels