Investing in the future of our industry

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AAHOA’s past, present, and future unite to make an impact on tomorrow’s hospitality leaders

by Heather Carnes

AAHOA not only invests in its members, it also invests in the future of the hospitality industry.

In our commitment to the next generation and America’s future hoteliers, AAHOA has partnered with Kennesaw State University Michael A. Leven School of Management, Entrepreneurship, and Hospitality, and the University of Houston Conrad Hilton College of Hotel & Restaurant Management to provide scholarships to exceptional students.

Thanks to many AAHOA leaders – both past and present – these scholarships are changing the lives of hospitality students and will have a lasting impact on the future of our industry.

KENNESAW STATE UNIVERSITY SCHOLARSHIP
Michael A. Leven School of Management, Entrepreneurship, and Hospitality

What will be one of the signature scholarships given each year, the Michael Leven and Lee Dushoff AAHOA Scholarship for Compassionate Leadership was created in partnership with KSU. The scholarship was created to honor Mike Leven and Lee Dushoff and the major contributions they made and the critical roles they played in the founding of AAHOA more than 30 years ago. Launched at the 2019 AAHOA Convention & Trade Show, it will support students seeking an undergraduate degree in hospitality management.

“AAHOA is a symbol of building a bridge between newly arrived immigrant hoteliers and the mainstream of the hotel industry, representing a unified force to remove the prejudice, bias, and stereotypes that existed three decades ago,” AAHOA Past Chairman Hasmukh (HP) Rama said. “Mike and Lee provided much-needed direction and leadership in building that bridge, helping break the stereotypes and bias. Having worked closely with both Mike and Lee, I feel strongly about ensuring their legacies endure.”

In addition to AAHOA’s contribution, AAHOA Members can also contribute to this legacy. Tax-deductible contributions on behalf of AAHOA Members and Industry Partners will be instrumental in creating a sizeable endowment that will provide scholarships for students for many years to come.

“JP Rama and I made an initial donation of $51,000, and other AAHOA leaders are generously contributing to this AAHOA Scholarship Fund,” Rama said. “I request all hoteliers to help the future leaders of our industry create opportunities for their own success; the students who earn these scholarships will help carry on the tradition of open, innovative, tolerant thought that both these great men brought to our industry.”

In just a few short months, the scholarship fund has nearly tripled in size, thanks to the generosity of industry supporters and AAHOA Members.

To learn more, visit community.kennesaw.edu/aahoa, or contact Seth Walker, director of Development for the Coles College of Business, at swalk165@kennesaw.edu.

UNIVERSITY OF HOUSTON SCHOLARSHIP
Conrad Hilton College of Hotel & Restaurant Management

AAHOA, in partnership with the University of Houston, created the AAHOA Student Assistantship and Scholarship Endowment to assist students pursuing a future in the hospitality industry. Each academic year, $25,000 is awarded to eligible students, and to date, the endowment has awarded scholarships to 25 students.

Three recent scholarship recipients (Quincy Reynolds, Parmveer Lidhar, and Chelsea Lawson) attended the 2019 AAHOA Convention & Trade Show earlier this year, where they got to learn more about the industry and speak directly to attendees about their studies and promising futures.

“Hospitality is an industry of innovation and leadership, and everything that led to the formation of AAHOA told me that this organization was founded on the desire to share the ideals that were going to become the future,” Quincy Reynolds said. “I was absolutely humbled to be selected as a recipient of the AAHOA scholarship because it means that I have been inducted into a cohort that has never trembled in the face of adversity and always strives to drive forward this amazing industry that we all love.”

To learn more, contact Joel Jaffe at jajaffe@uh.edu.

REALIZING THEIR OWN DREAMS

AAHOA’s scholarship initiatives are creating opportunities for those seeking hospitality education, helping them realize their own American Dream. AAHOA looks forward to seeing what you accomplish and how you impact the industry for years to come. Congratulations to all scholarship recipients!

Thank you to KSU scholarship contributors*
AAHOA…………………………………………………….. Atlanta, GA
Alkesh Patel……………………………………………… Vancouver, WA
Auro Hotels Management, LLC……………………. Greenville, SC
Ayco Charitable Foundation………………………… Albany, NY
Bakulesh Patel………………………………………….. Lake Oswego, OR
Bharat Patel……………………………………………… Irving, TX
Chetan Patel…………………………………………….. Beaufort, SC
Elaine G. Dushoff………………………………………. Philadelphia, PA
Gainesville Masters, LLC……………………………. Gainesville, GA
Imesh Vaidya…………………………………………….. Los Ranchos, NM
Innovative Hospitality
Management Properties………………………………. New Hope, PA
Jagruti Panwala………………………………………….. Ivyland, PA
Jayesh R. Patel………………………………………….. Orchard Park, NY
Mahesh Amin…………………………………………….. Belmont, CA
Mehul Patel……………………………………………….. Southlake, TX
Miller Law Group………………………………………… Palo Alto, CA
Nimisha Patel…………………………………………….. San Antonio, TX
Pioneer Management Inc…………………………….. Salisbury, MD
Roger Bloss……………………………………………….. Henderson, NV
Sandhya Patel……………………………………………. Cincinnati, OH
Steven Belmonte………………………………………… Franklin, TN
Vinay Patel………………………………………………… Chantilly, VA

A NOTE FROM THE DIRECTOR

Michael A. Leven School of Management, Entrepreneurship, and Hospitality

As Kennesaw State University prepares to launch its new hospitality degree, AAHOA has pledged its support by establishing an annual scholarship for exceptional student leaders within the program.

I had the pleasure of attending AAHOA’s annual conference, where we were able to announce the scholarship’s creation and the launch of our global fundraising campaign. The money we raise will join AAHOA’s contribution, as well as a generous donation from Elaine Dushoff, in endowing the new scholarship in perpetuity.

MORE THAN JUST A SCHOLARSHIP

The goal of the Scholarship for Compassionate Leadership is to help prepare the next generation of professionals to guide the industry. Students in KSU’s hospitality management degree program will be the managers and owners of tomorrow, and it is very important that these students have every opportunity to succeed.

That is why scholarship recipients will receive more than tuition assistance. AAHOA will also invite the students to visit the organization’s Atlanta headquarters, meet with the Board of Directors, and attend their annual convention and trade show. These experiences will provide recipients with valuable real-world insight into how the hotel business operates.

HELPING THE NEXT GENERATION

The availability of this scholarship could make all the difference for bright hospitality management majors who may be facing financial difficulties.

While potentially helping first-generation college students succeed is attractive to KSU and AAHOA, as we work together to develop the scholarship’s application requirements, the most important thing is ensuring the award goes to students who demonstrate true leadership potential and a capacity for compassion.

NEW SCHOLARSHIP, NEW OPPORTUNITIES

As director of the Leven School, I am passionate about creating new student opportunities.

The hospitality industry is a massive player in the Southeast’s economy, and its influence is only going to grow. Initiatives like our new undergraduate degree in hospitality management, and the launch of this corresponding scholarship program, will ensure our university continues to provide the industry with a talented, highly energized workforce.

Leven and Dushoff changed the course of the hotel business. With the establishment of this scholarship, they will inspire future generations of hospitality professionals to do the same.

Robin Cheramie, PhD
Interim Dean and Professor, Coles College of Business, Kennesaw State University

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