November 14, 2017 – HSMAI South Florida continued the awarding of its Dr. Peter Ricci Scholarship at the 2017 Annual GALA held at the Turnberry Isle Resort and Club in Aventura, Florida. Dr. Peter Ricci, Director of the Hospitality Management Program at Florida Atlantic University (FAU) presented two checks to students Juan Tamayo and Francine Coker. Juan is pursuing a Master of Science (MS) degree at Florida International University’s Chaplin School of Hospitality Management. Francine is pursuing an MBA degree in hospitality & tourism management at Florida Atlantic University. Each student received a $2500 contribution to their educational pursuits.

This scholarship fund, created by HSMAI South Florida former president Carmen Ackerman, was designed to provide educational funds for students enrolled in either undergraduate or graduate hospitality/tourism/culinary programs at any South Florida institutions. HSMAI South Florida covers the wide swath of geography from Jupiter down to Key West and over to Naples/Ft. Myers and up into Sarasota.

Students can apply and receive funding based upon the merit of their application, their personal achievements, and their career goals. The career interests must align with HSMAI in the areas of hospitality sales, marketing, or revenue management including ancillary areas of eCommerce, digital marketing, travel product/service distribution and related nice segments. South Florida is home to a high number of college-level hospitality & tourism programs and is has one of the most diverse student populations in the country.

Dr. Ricci was singled out for the naming of this scholarship honor based on his years of service to HSMAI, his passion for education, and his 20 years of experience in hospitality industry leadership roles such as a hotel general manager. His vision for empowering students to achieve excellence strongly encouraging their affiliation with HSMAI and other hospitality associations so that, early on, they begin to network, grow, and learn within their anticipated career segments. As a living role mode to the students he shows his commitment with current memberships in MPI, HSMAI, SGMP, FRLA, AHLA, CMAA, PBCHLA, and others.

The HSMAI South Florida Chapter will soon accept scholarship applications from students pursuing careers in hospitality sales, marketing, or revenue management for the 2018 cycle. Scholarships are awarded based on merit and complete eligibility criteria and requirements are outlined on the HSMAI South Florida website:

Applications must be submitted by June 30 and winners are announced each year in early August prior to the Annual GALA. For further information, please contact the HSMAI South Florida Chapter Manager at [email protected]