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Michigan State University’s School of Hospitality Business to Host
CAREER EXPO XXXIV November 6 and 7

Keynote Speaker to be 1977 Graduate Chris Hackem, ARAMARK's COO for Education

(November 2, 2012, East Lansing, Michigan) Nearly 65 hospitality companies and 130 recruiters are expected to participate in CAREER EXPO XXXIV, hosted by The School of Hospitality Business at Michigan State University November 6 and 7.

“Over 700 students typically attend CAREER EXPO,” explains Ms. Authella Collins Hawks, director of The School’s Student and Industry Resource Center which organizes the annual event through a student-led CAREER EXPO Executive Board.  Meghan Clark (BA ’13) is CEO.

CAREER EXPO features an entire day of professional development programs at the Kellogg Hotel and Conference Center on Tuesday, followed by an evening career fair in the Big Ten Rooms.  The next day, the companies will conduct interviews in the Huntington Club at Spartan Stadium for students seeking internships and permanent positions.

Also during CAREER EXPO each year, The School selects its Industry Partner of the Year, which for 2012 is ARAMARK, a leader in professional services, providing award-winning food services, facilities management, and uniform and career apparel to health care institutions, universities, school districts, stadiums and arenas, and businesses around the world.  In 2012, FORTUNE magazine again recognized ARAMARK on its list of “World’s Most Admired Companies,” and the Ethisphere Institute honored ARAMARK as one of the “World’s Most Ethical Companies.”

Headquartered in Philadelphia, ARAMARK employs approximately 250,000 individuals who serve clients in 22 countries.

The keynote speaker on Tuesday is ARAMARK’s Chief Operating Officer for Education Chris Hackem, who graduated from The School in 1977.

“We are so pleased to honor ARAMARK this year,” says Meghan.  “Director of College Relations Nicole Wormley takes an ‘above-and-beyond-the-call-of-duty’ interest in our students, and she works hard to place them within the company in places where they can succeed.”  Indeed, ARAMARK’s mentoring system involves weekly contact with the students’ managers.  In addition, ARAMARK has been actively involved in the life of The School, with Nicole frequently speaking in classes and participating in CAREER EXPO, and influencing top executives at ARAMARK to do the same.

ARAMARK supports industry-related clubs within The School, and has attracted School graduates for decades.  Spartans can be found at every level and in nearly every company location.

Chris Hackem, of course, is one of those Spartans. She currently leads a team that manages dining, facility and stadium and arena services for more than 600 colleges and universities throughout North America; and food nutrition, facilities management, and other support services for more than 500 K-12 school districts in the United States.

Chris began her career as a management trainee with ARAMARK.  She served as catering director, assistant food service director, and an operations manager before moving into senior leadership roles in Business Services, Facilities Services, and Higher Education.

Prior to being named COO in 2011, Chris served as president of ARAMARK Higher Education and ARAMARK Facility Services.  Before that, she served as executive vice president of ARAMARK Business Services.

In 2010, Chris was recognized by the Profiles in Diversity Journal magazine as a “Woman Worth Watching.”  She was inducted in The School of Hospitality Business’s Alumni Association Hall of Fame Class of Originators in 2000.

“We thank Chris and ARAMARK for being important partners for our School,” says School Director and Professor Dr. Ron Cichy (BA ’72, MBA ’77).  “Our students are fortunate to be able to participate in CAREER EXPO and have access to leaders such as Chris.”


“WE” represents the tens of thousands of relationships among students, faculty, alumni, and industry partners.  “THE” reflects our 85-year foundation of preparing the hospitality industry’s managers and operators.  Today The School also emphasizes real estate and thinking like the owner throughout the curriculum, for all our students.

About The School of Hospitality Business at Michigan State University:  We are The School
Recognized as the top-ranked hospitality business school, The School has a unique and industry-specific position within the Broad College of Business at Michigan State University.  Celebrating its 85th anniversary year in 2012, 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 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 is
  • to INSPIRE continuous learning by empowering present and future managers to ACQUIRE knowledge, skills, and global Hospitality Business leadership positions
  • to CREATE knowledge by engaging in collaborative theoretical and applied research for the benefit of undergraduate and graduate students, Hospitality Businesses, and the community of hospitality management scholars
  • to ENGAGE our Hospitality Business partners through outreach and service, and to ENHANCE global Hospitality Business economic, community, and academic development and
  • to CONTINUOUSLY IMPROVE The School's global leadership position in Hospitality Business operations, development, ownership, and management.
The First, The Original, and STILL The Leader…The School of Hospitality Business.  We are The School™.

For more information, please visit us at

Lena Loeffler

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Also See: Faculty Member and Two Alumni of The School of Hospitality Business at Michigan State University Honored with Lifetime Achievement Awards; Recognizing Dr. Ray Schmidgall (Hilton Hotels Professor of Hospitality Financial Management), Dr. Reginald Foucar-Szocki (BA ’77) and Professor Robert B. Zemke, Jr. (MBA ’66) / August 2012

Students in Michigan State University Chapter of Club Managers Association of America Attend CMAA World Conference and Bring Home Two Awards; Club of the Future Competition for Event Planning and Student Membership Growth Award for the Highest Percentage of World Conference Attendees / March 2012

Hans Schuler, Chairman and CEO of Schuler’s Restaurant & Pub in Marshall, Michigan, Named National Restaurateur of the Year by Independent Restaurateur Magazine / January 2012

Dr. Ray Schmidgall of The School of Hospitality Business at Michigan State University Honored with the University of Delaware Michael D. Olsen Research Achievement Award / January 2012

The School of Hospitality Business at Michigan State University Names the 2011-2012 Scholarship Award Winning Students / January 2012

The School of Hospitality Business Alumni Association at Michigan State University Honored Industry Leaders at its Annual Celebration of Leadership; Bob Habeeb Named Industry Leader of the Year, and Ed Watkins Inaugurated as Spartan Hospitality Business Champion / November 2011

Michigan State University Research Website: 2011 Lodging Market Potential Index Available; Facilitates a Relative Comparison of the 25 Largest Lodging Markets Along Ten Dimensions / November 2011

The School of Hospitality Business Alumni Association at Michigan State University Honors Two Alumni with Lifetime Achievement Awards; Hospitality Educators Dr. H.A. “Andy” Divine (BA ’60) and Professor George Alley (BA ’59) Recognized / August 2011

Students at The School of Hospitality Business at Michigan State University Produce 60th Annual Les Gourmets Evening of Fine Dining for 200 Guests / April 2011

The School of Hospitality Business at Michigan State University Establishes a Real Estate Development Institute to Focus on Hospitality Business Real Estate Development and Ownership / February 2011

Spring 2010 Graduates of Michigan State's School of Hospitality Business Hear Kellogg Hotel's General Manager Joel Heberlein Speak; Student Remarks Given by The School’s Outstanding Senior Alexandra Clark / May 2010

Richard Farrar, VP of Owner & Franchise Services for Marriott International, Captures the Attention of MSU Students in The School of Hospitality Business / February 2010

The School of Hospitality Business at Michigan State University Receives Initial Grant from the J. Willard and Alice S. Marriott Foundation in the Amount of $1.3 million for the $5.8 million Culinary Business Learning Lab Revitalization Project / August 2008

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