By 2014, OSU-Cascades hopes to have a 4 year Hospitality Degree Program in place, thanks to a coalition of business donors and the Oregon Restaurant and Lodging Association.
OSU-Cascades Vice President Becky Johnson says they received a $320,000 gift to launch the program. The next step is to hire someone to design the program. "We want someone who has experience in the industry and experience in academia, who will come here and actually work with the industries. We’re going to expect them to go out and talk to the people in Central Oregon, Portland, maybe the entire west coast and talk about the skills that this workforce needs in this day and age in hospitality, and then design the curriculum around that."
Johnson says a similar program was offered in Corvallis, but it ended a few years ago.
The hospitality industry responded so well to their recent executive hospitality program that was offered through a partnership with Cornell University, that it helped fuel the idea for the degree program.