GRAND JUNCTION, Colo — The Western Slope welcomes the very first teaching hotel. Hotel Maverick offers a unique hands-on experience to students from Colorado Mesa University and Western Colorado Community College. So, in a struggling economy due to the COVID-19 pandemic, which is according to UCLA’s Economic Forecast, the opportunities at Hotel Maverick will give students a leg up when competing with others for future positions.
Tim Foster, President of CMU, says, “students get the opportunity to work at a really high surface level,” and this “puts them so far ahead when they are ready to find a job.”
Hotel Maverick offers two hands-on programs. CMU has a Hospitality Management degree, so students can intern at the hotel and gain real world experience on top of everything they have learned in the classroom. The second program is a culinary practicum for Western Colorado Community College students in the rooftop restaurant.
Foster says the university has been planning these programs for some time, and now that they are officially in session the students are loving their news lessons. Some lessons are even taught at the hotel. There is a space set up on the second floor for students to study more skills before they finish the program and apply for professional positions in the hotel industry or the food and beverage industry.