Hilton Chicago Provides Kendall College Students with Immersive Learning Experience

Chicago — August 12, 2011 — The Kendall College School of Hospitality Management announced today that students in its Conventions and Large Meeting course, taught by Professor Glen Ramsborg, Ph.D., CMP, simulated planning a large meeting at the Hilton Chicago. As part of this innovative course, students worked directly with the hotel’s management team in an immersive learning exercise that included designing all aspects of a large meeting.

"Professor Ramsborg succeeded in creating a course that gives Kendall College students an excellent opportunity to interact with professionals in the meetings and events field and gain real-world experience," said Jeffrey Catrett, dean of the Kendall College School of Hospitality Management. "This course was specifically designed to challenge students to apply the concepts they have learned in the classroom to a real event management setting."

Kendall students first worked on scenarios to plan and execute a large meeting at the Hilton Chicago, and one team was randomly selected to present their work at the Summit Meeting, also known in the industry as a Pre-Convention Meeting, to the staff at the Hilton Chicago. The Summit Meeting typically takes place one or two days before the major arrival of attendees and its purpose is to review all of the details of the meeting one last time.

Approximately 15 department heads from the hotel attended the mock Summit Meeting to ask questions and clarify information presented in the Event Specifications Guide and Banquet Event Orders (BEOs) that were completed by the student team. Some of the hotel departments represented included reservations, accounting, event management, security, catering, banquet and events, and sales.

“This real-world learning experience gave our students the unique opportunity to interact with industry professionals who are, on a daily basis, involved in executing meetings and conventions,” said Professor Ramsborg. “It was an extremely positive learning experience and brought closure to a quarter of intense work and attention to detail – all of which goes into making a meeting flawless.”

The School of Hospitality Management at Kendall College offers a concentration in Meetings and Events Management with courses taught by distinguished faculty, like Professor Ramsborg, who are experts in the field and provide opportunities for students to learn in and out of the classroom. The curriculum is tailored to meet the current needs of the industry with a focus on the Certified Meeting Professional (CMP) International Standards. In addition to learning theory, students practice leadership, detailed execution and teamwork. Kendall’s Chicago location provides students access to a vast network of hotels and some of the largest exhibition and event venues where they can perfect their skills through class projects and two required industry internships. These opportunities for professional development prepare students to be leaders in the field upon graduation.

About the Kendall College School of Hospitality Management:
Kendall College, founded in 1934, is located in Chicago, Illinois. Kendall offers undergraduate degrees in business, culinary arts, early childhood education, foodservice management and hospitality management to a diverse and passionate community of more than 2500 students. The curriculum combines strong academics with practical experience and international educational opportunities that help give students in business, hospitality and culinary arts programs the skills and expertise to be leaders in their professions. Kendall College was ranked the number one program in Chicago for preparing students for careers in hospitality management and culinary arts in a survey of management at Chicago’s leading hotels and Michelin Guide restaurants (ORC International – 2011 Survey). The School of Hospitality Management focuses on the art of hospitality and the science of management – the European tradition of superior customer service with American managerial know-how. Kendall College, a member of the Laureate International Universities network, is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission and is a member of the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools (NCA), www.ncahlc.org. For more information, visit www.Kendall.edu.

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