This spring, the Oregon Hospitality Foundation participated in nine career fairs across Oregon. These events included the CTE Expo hosted at Oregon Coast Community College, Portland Workforce Alliance annual career fair, and various other career fairs at high schools on the coast, Portland metro, and the Willamette Valley. Our members, including McMenamins, Holiday Inn of Wilsonville, Adobe Resort, Pelican, Timberline Lodge, and the Hyatt Regency participated in these events and had the opportunity to connect with students as prospective employees for their businesses.
In addition to these career fairs, we organized two speaking engagements where our members shared their career journeys and experiences in the hospitality industry. Desaray Burnett from Edgewater Inn spoke to students from Winter Lake High School in Coquille, sharing how she started as a housekeeper and worked her way up to becoming a general manager. David Dreher with Northwest x Southern Hospitality representing Marriott Courtyard in Corvallis also shared his story with students, discussing the importance of customer service and how it has helped him throughout his career.
David also organized a field trip experience for four students from College Hill High School to give them a firsthand look at the hospitality industry. The students toured the hotel, spoke with staff members, and learned about the different roles within the industry.
It has been my privilege to coordinate these efforts and work with our members to create a pipeline of talented individuals interested in the hospitality industry. By showing up at these career fairs and speaking engagements and sharing their stories, our members are inspiring the next generation of hospitality professionals. It is heartening to see our members' commitment to creating a robust talent pipeline for the industry.
I’m excited to say, our workforce development efforts this spring have been successful in bringing the hospitality industry closer to high school students. With the right support and guidance, students interested in the hospitality industry can look forward to a bright future. As the Workforce Development and Business Liaison for ORLA, I am proud of our members' participation in these efforts and look forward to seeing the impact that they will have on the industry in the years to come.
Our work cannot be accomplished without our committed partners. I want to take a moment to thank Travel Oregon for serving on our Oregon Hospitality Foundation Board of Directors and financially investing in the importance of workforce development outcomes. If our bridge-building efforts intrigue you, please reach out to me. All industry members are welcome to join us in taking more intentional steps into our high school and community college classrooms. Take a step off the sidelines and join us on the field in making a meaningful difference for Oregon’s restaurant and lodging industries. You can reach me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Posted by: Lupe Arellano, Workforce Development / Business Liaison, Oregon Hospitality Foundation
The Oregon Hospitality Foundation (OHF) team includes Courtney Smith, ProStart Manager, Ella Sturdevant, Workforce Development Coordinator, and Jason Brandt, President & CEO (ORLA) / Foundation Board Member.