Florida students served by the best in hospitality
There have been thousands of uplifting moments in the Learning for Life programme. One happened in August 2012 when the first initiative to launch in North America graduated its inaugural class of 49 students from Florida International University (FIU) before an audience of Diageo employees, stakeholders, friends and family.
A further 149 students have since graduated from the distinguished Chaplin School of Hospitality and Tourism Management's eight-week job readiness, certification and internship course – one of the top hospitality programmes in the United States.
Learning for Life, FIU and the partners from across the Miami community whose passion and dedication brought the programme to life, gave deserving students the opportunity, support and motivation to complete the course. Subsequently, 135 students gained internships in some of the hospitality industry’s biggest name venues and chains, while 34 have since been employed.
Randy Millian, Diageo's Latin America and Caribbean President, gave an inspiring keynote speech to the graduates during the ceremony at the Biscayne Bay Campus, in which he said the programme 'gives individuals a real opportunity to better themselves and their families by learning a profession, finding a job, and becoming active and respected members of their communities.'
The South Florida initiative was recognised as a finalist in the Beacon Council and the Greater Miami Chamber of Commerce's (GMCC) prestigious community awards this year. It was nominated for the GMCC's International Business Leadership Awards in the Philanthropic & Community Leadership category, which highlighted international businesses that make a significant impact on the state's economy.