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Hospitality Management School Wins International Honor

Award recognizes an innovative refugee training program

Receiving the McCool Award

The innovative work happening inside the Fritz Knoebel School of Hospitality Management is being recognized on an international level. On Friday, July 22, the school was awarded the McCool Breakthrough Award, given to an individual or organization that has made a significant breakthrough or introduced a unique approach to teaching, learning or operations.

The Knoebel School is being recognized for its work of incorporating service learning into the classroom and having students mentor new refugees on ways to bolster their skills. Each quarter students learn how to hire and manage employees and refugees learn the culinary skills they need to work in restaurants and hotels. The program was featured in a University of Denver Magazine article in 2012.

Receiving the McCool Award

“I am so proud of our team for earning the McCool Award,” says David Corsun, director and associate professor at the school. “The partnership with the African Community Center (ACC) and how we implement the program by breaking down traditional course silos are extraordinary. The program better prepares our students by creating the kind of organizational complexity students will experience in the workplace after graduation.”

The McCool Breakthrough Award is presented by the International Council on Hotel, Restaurant and Institutional Education. It honors the spirit of former NASA astronaut Willie McCool, who lost his life in the space shuttle Columbia mission in 2003. McCool was the son of Audrey and Barry McCool, both hospitality educators.