A Day at State
East Lansing – February 18, 2010 - Well, actually it was two days.
When Visiting Leader and Alumnus Richard Farrar (BA ’73) returned to campus
to speak to students in The School of Hospitality Business in January,
he found there was quite a bit more to his trip than just a classroom.
Richard, vice president of Owner & Franchise Services for Marriott
International, Inc., and his wife Nancy are both alumni of MSU, and met
each other while students on campus. Nancy is from the Lansing area,
and Richard, chairman emeritus of The School’s Alumni Association and the
2007 Alumnus of the Year, advises and assists The School in a number of
ways. So they return to East Lansing from their home in Maryland
with some regularity.
But their recent visit was especially memorable. Arriving on
Wednesday, January 20, they were treated by Beth Marinez, recruiting secretary
for the team, to a tour of the Breslin Center and the men’s basketball
facilities, including a visit with Coach Tom Izzo. Dinner followed
at the Tip-off Café in Breslin Center just before the start of that
evening’s men’s basketball game against Iowa. The Spartans obliged
them with a win, which Richard and Nancy enjoyed watching from one of Breslin’s
luxurious suites. For these die-hard Spartan basketball fans – who,
by the way, do not get regular broadcast of MSU games in their area – the
evening was spectacular.
“I knew Richard was having fun when I saw him imitating the MSU Motion
dancers with 9-year-old Steven Izzo,” says Dr. Ron Cichy (BA ’72, MBA ’77),
director and professor in The School.
The next day, Richard spoke in THREE classes, addressing the topic
of “How Marriott Makes Money” in Dr. Kim’s HB 375 – Hospitality Marketing;
“What to Consider Before and After Graduation” in Dr. Beck’s HB 380 – Meeting
& Event Planning & Management; and “Strategic Marketing” in Dr.
Beck’s HB 476 – Applied Marketing – Lodging. He told students to
“be engaged. Take leadership roles on campus, whether in sororities
and fraternities, School clubs and events, or other campus organizations.
Leadership development is perhaps even more important than grades in determining
whether you are hired in most companies.”
Dr. Beck said afterward, “Richard always does a fantastic job in capturing
the students’ attention. His effectiveness in the classroom can be
measured by the number of students who make a point to speak to him after
Dr. Kim also observed Richard’s impact on the students, saying, “Students
were truly impressed with his lifetime industry experience and they were
challenged to understand different market pricing methods and trends to
maximize the profit for Marriott.”
Following his presentations, Richard was designated an Honorary Faculty
Member in The School.
|When Richard accepted his Alumni of the Year Award in May 2007, he
gave succinct advice to the students and alumni in the audience:
Join the Alumni Association Board
Come back to campus and get involved when you can
Be prepared to work 24/7 with no holidays
Plan; plan to stay with your company at least five years
Join a 401(k) retirement plan
Take a good time management course
While you're in The School, take leadership roles in events such as the
Annual Auction and Les Gourmets
Make sure upper management knows your name and face
Take tough jobs that others shy away from
Care; care about your job
Learn to tie a bow-tie
Choose your attitude
Make the most of where you are, not where you're not
Call Mom and Dad; love is powerful, so keep it in your life
Have fun; folks that have fun are fun to be around
The next day, Richard and Nancy visited Shaw Hall, the residence hall
where their romance began, and then enjoyed a tour of MSU’s football practice
facility conducted by Dylan Marinez, the team’s equipment manager.
Their “Day(s) at State” provided students with Richard’s expertise
and hospitality industry wisdom, but also gave Richard and Nancy yet another
set of campus memories.
About The School of Hospitality Business at Michigan State University
Recognized as the top-ranked hospitality business school in the world,
The School celebrates its 83rd year anniversary in 2010. The School
has almost 10,000 graduates worldwide, including a number of leading academicians
and industry executives, who have earned both undergraduate and graduate
degrees. Founded in 1927, the mission of The School is to continually
enhance The School's leadership position in hospitality business education
through teaching, research, and service. The School offers an exceptionally
well-crafted curriculum, taught by innovative professors who are leading
textbook authors, sought-after consultants, and respected researchers.
The mission of The School of Hospitality Business Alumni Association is
to provide active leadership in support of the mission of The School of
Hospitality Business through membership participation, image enhancement,
financial commitment, and promotion of synergies among students, faculty,
alumni, and friends. The First, The Original, and STILL The Leader.
. . The School of Hospitality Business. For more information, please