Students from Marco Island Academy at the Marco Island Marriott Resort. From left, back row: Teacher Kelly Monnot, Cassandra Ramirez, Oscar Alvarez, Nick Dotson, Ian Van Cleef, Patrick Silveri, Blake Barrett and Ben Batcher; front row: Kiera Ludwigsen, John Olszak, Sam Lietzke, Colby Jones and Matt Jessen.
Marco Island Academy through a collaborative effort with Marco Island Marriott offers a bold and ground-breaking Hospitality and Tourism program. The program features experiential learning at its best. The elective course involves 16 chapters of study that includes such topics as economics, the impact of tourism, destination sales, marketing, promotion and careers in the hotel and tourism industry.
Students learn from a selection of in-class guest speakers – resort professionals from Marco Island Marriott – who speak on the topics of tourism, destination sales, marketing, product design, distribution and promotion.
General Manager, Rick Medwedeff, is one of the guest speakers who provides a presentation on "The Hotel Business," which covers the types of hotel classifications, the importance of yield management and describes guest services, various hotel positions and more.
"As a global company, we open the world to the students and offer job opportunities that are viable worldwide. Under one roof, we provide a diversity of career options unlike any other business," said Medwedeff.
"The unparalleled variety of positions provides the students with a unique opportunity to preview long term careers that can provide benefits, security and a livelihood."
Students also have an opportunity to tour the resort a half dozen times during the course. The tours provide insight into the practical aspect of front and back of house hotel operations and feature representatives from restaurant operations, guest services, recreation, marketing and sales departments.
The semester culminates with a tour from human resources personnel who will help students explore careers in the hospitality and tourism industry.
The classroom guest speakers share 'real-life' knowledge and expertise in their specific field which gives our students a wonderful opportunity not only to learn about the hospitality industry, but also to learn about the skills needed to be successful in any job market.