Hospitality Management Department and Alumni Discuss Internship Opportunities in Nashville

Posted on 11/5/2019 8:47:37 AM

Stephen Shiring, EdD, MBA, chairperson, Department of Hospitality Management, visited with Julia Waters and Nickolas Driggs, both IUP December 2017 graduates, in Nashville, Tennessee, over the weekend of October 26, 2019.

Nickolas Driggs, Stephen Shiring, and Julia Waters in NashvilleNashville, the “Music City” and capital of Tennessee, hosts a growing tourist trade. Visitors seek attractions such as the Grand Ole Opry, Country Music Hall of Fame, and the city’s famous “Music Row” district. It is no surprise that this area has ample growth for professionals seeking positions in the hospitality industry.

Shiring’s visit to the area included spending time with alumni Waters and Driggs and meeting with their employers to introduce them to the Department of Hospitality Management’s professional internship program.

When asked if he was surprised by the demand for more IUP students in the Nashville area, Shiring responded, “It does not surprise me. After our IUP Hospitality Management graduates are hired by a hotel operation, for example, the hotel management wants more of them! Our IUP Hospitality Management graduates have completed a dynamic curriculum, including working in the Allenwood lab and completing two industry internships. Combining the IUP dedicated work ethic with our curriculum, our graduates are always in high demand. I was able to meet with representatives within the Nashville area to introduce to them our professional internship program. I look forward to having our students serve their internships in hotels, restaurants, different aspects of tourism, convention services, and special events venues in Nashville.”

Waters, front desk supervisor of the Hilton Garden Inn, said, “I am thrilled to be working in Nashville! The hospitality program provided a comprehensive curriculum, and I am well prepared. I served my internship at the Hilton Garden Inn on the IUP campus, and it provided for me a wonderful work experience.”

Driggs moved to Nashville four months ago from Washington, DC. Now working with Dell Computer Company in Nashville, he originally was hired after graduation by Wyndham Resorts. Driggs said, “Being a Hospitality Management graduate from IUP has prepared me for a career in hospitality. I am now in customer service with Dell, managing my customer group located in upper state New York, and I am loving every minute of it. I was able to make the transition because of the course work I had as a hospitality management major and mentoring professors like Dr. Shiring.”

Shiring and the other professors of the Department of Hospitality Management look forward to continuing to grow professional relationships in Nashville and other destinations that aide IUP students in furthering their professional connections.

The Department of Hospitality Management is the premier hotel, restaurant, tourism and special event undergraduate program in the region and the largest program in the Pennsylvania State System of Higher Education is accredited by the Accreditation Commission for Programs in Hospitality Education.