Courtney Barnes
University of Nevada, Las Vegas – Harrah College of Hospitality
Master of Science in Hotel Administration
Taya Miller
University of Central Florida
Bachelor of Science in Hospitality Management
Ajayi Oliver
Monroe College
Bachelor of Science in Hospitality/Business Management
For as long as I can remember, I have always wanted to work in…

For as long as I can remember, I have always wanted to work in the hospitality industry. Growing up, my family and traveled a lot; thanks to my father working for Delta Airlines. Because of our numerous trips, I was exposed to hospitality around the world, which made me curious about how different hospitality organizations operate. From there, I knew my career goals would focus on the hospitality industry, which is why I pursued an undergraduate degree in business and a master’s degree in hotel administration; the perfect combination to grasp the operations of the overall hospitality industry.

Since starting my first full time position in the hospitality industry, my interest has only peaked. In my current role, I currently deal with many guest related issues, but over time I have come to learn that there are so many opportunities and avenues to go follow in the hospitality industry. During graduate school, I studied for and earned a certification in hotel industry analytics. This certification has pushed me towards striving for a career that focuses on analyzing and interpreting the data that goes into making sure our hospitality organizations are successful. However, my ultimate career goal is to become a director of guest experience, where I will utilize the knowledge and skills I have gained throughout my career.

I am someone who is constantly working to achieve something…

I am someone who is constantly working to achieve something greater. These dreams that I create may be seemingly unrealistic to others, although I work extremely hard to make them happen. I have dedicated my life to continuing to make something greater out of myself – the second that I achieve a goal of mine, I create a new one that drives me to complete something better. To me, life is about creating something that is better than myself – something that will make dreams happen for others – and that is why I chose hospitality management as my major.

All of my work experience has been in the hospitality industry – ranging from serving at a restaurant to representing a marine biology program by being an ambassador. This past year, I made the leap to move far away from my home to pursue my dream. Since being at the University of Central Florida, I have been given countless opportunities that I am infinitely thankful for. I have joined clubs that pertain to my major, attended conferences and workshops, networked with many professionals, and have gained the accessibility to obtain experience in the fourth largest hospitality city in the United States. These opportunities would not be possible for me without the scholarship that I received from NEWH and so, once again, I am greatly thankful.

In the future, I aspire to work in the theme park industry to develop new, innovative ways to not only appeal to guests, but to better guest experience. The creative side of the marketing and sales sector interests me, and so a master’s degree for this specification is something I also aspire to obtain. Due to my interest in the creative side of marketing and sales along with my interest to make guests experiences phenomenal, my future dream job is the Director of the Sales Team for Walt Disney World.

I am a firm believer that through hard work and dedication much…
I am a firm believer that through hard work and dedication much of your dreams and aspirations will be manifested. Sometimes I often wonder and ask myself, with the premeditated thought in my mind, “what if”, what if I lived my life in the past, circumscribed and handicapped by the fear of failure and defeat. What if I never got back up every time I felled due to hardships and difficulties.

For me, destiny is not a matter of choice, it is a thing to be achieved. When I think of my journey coming from the beautiful islands of the Bahamas and also coming very humble beginnings, instantly I become empowered to succeed.

One of the amazing things that I like most about my destiny is that, it will never be predetermined by some of the hardships that I endured. However, it will be an extrinsic ambition that propels me to improve upon my state.

When I was 8 unfortunately, I lost my mom due to a brain aneurysm. This unfortunate situation impacted my young life tremendously. I made a vow not only to myself but to my mom. I vowed to become a successful, productive citizen in our society.
It was in that moment, I decided to apply much of my time and attention to the principles of education. I strongly believe that education is indeed the foundation to ones success.

My passion for the Hospitality industry came from my tropical background being from the Bahamas. Ultimately, this was one of the main inspirations which made me chose my major. Much of my work experiences has came from me working within the hospitality industry – ranging from me working as a serving at a restaurant to working at the front desk of a hotel.

In the future, I aspire to become a successful restaurateur. I have always been fascinated with working within the restaurant industry and one day I hope to own a restaurant of my own. My goal is to provide guest with exceptional customer service in a soothing, friendly environment.