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12 College Students Selected for Inaugural Sands Hospitality Immersion Program in Las Vegas


12 College Students Selected for Inaugural Sands Hospitality Immersion Program in Las Vegas
Las Vegas Sands and the Thurgood Marshall College Fund (TMCF) have announced that 12 college students will be participating in the first-ever Sands Hospitality Immersion Program, which will take place from July 24-28 in Las Vegas. The program is designed to provide students with an in-depth look at the inner workings of the Las Vegas hospitality industry, with the goal of encouraging interest in travel, tourism, and leisure.
The Sands Hospitality Immersion Program was established by Sands and TMCF, which is the only national organization that exclusively represents the Black college community. The program aims to provide students at Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs) with a comprehensive introduction to the travel, tourism, and leisure industry, as well as its many professional opportunities. The goal is to inspire students to consider pursuing a career in one of the world’s fastest-growing and largest employment fields.
The 12 students who were selected for this exclusive summer program are all rising juniors and seniors at TMCF member schools. They were chosen from a pool of applicants who applied through TMCF and were reviewed by Sands. The participants include Ta’Niyah Harris from Bowie State University; Erin Williams, Jaida Robinson-Clark, Jasmyn Love, and Joshua Williamson from Howard University; Nathanael Edwards from Langston University; Zay’Kori Jones from Norfolk State University; Brandon Smith and Derrick Jacobs from North Carolina A&T State University; Joleen Buchanan from the University of the Virgin Islands; and Kayla Smith and Marquis Bell from Virginia State University.
“As a first-generation college student, my career has always been the light at the end of the tunnel while at Howard University,” said Jaida Robinson-Clark, a rising junior at Howard University. “My participation in the Sands Hospitality Immersion is a glimpse into a promising industry where I could pursue my interest and learn about the many opportunities that may lie ahead. Considering how many applied to attend, this excites me, and I am grateful to have been selected.”
The William F. Harrah College of Hospitality at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas has curated a multi-day experience that will provide participants with an in-depth look at the hospitality industry. The program will include seminars, tours of integrated resorts with behind-the-scenes access, visits to other hospitality venues, presentations by experts in various fields, and interactive events such as a cooking competition with professional chefs.
“We are thrilled to partner with Sands on this tremendous immersion opportunity in Las Vegas,” said Dr. Harry Williams, president and CEO of Thurgood Marshall College Fund.
“Creating these unique experiences for our students is at the core of our mission. The hospitality field is one of the fastest growing in America, and this strategic partnership allows TMCF to provide our talented students with a chance to learn more about the various careers in this important industry.”
The travel, tourism, and leisure industry is experiencing significant job growth and offers a wide range of professional opportunities. In addition to traditional hospitality roles in hotel operations or restaurant, meetings, and venue management, the industry also offers careers in finance, marketing, sales, human resources, information technology, legal, and other professional service fields.
Brandon Smith, a rising senior at North Carolina A&T State, expressed his gratitude to Sands and the Thurgood Marshall College Fund for their investment in creating a pathway for students at HBCUs. He said that he is looking forward to building professional relationships within the industry and gaining valuable insights into the international landscape of the hospitality, tourism, and entertainment industry.
The Sands Hospitality Immersion Program is part of the Sands Cares global community engagement program and is just one of the company’s many education and workforce development initiatives. These initiatives include partnerships with higher education institutions, funding for scholarship programs, on-property and industry-supported training opportunities for students and hospitality professionals, and mentorship and instruction from company leaders and experts.
“Our goal for this program is twofold: to encourage the best and brightest students in all disciplines to consider hospitality as a career path and to ensure our industry cultivates a diverse and inclusive workforce that provides opportunities for people from all backgrounds and communities,” said Ron Reese, senior vice president of global communications and corporate affairs.
“This program is a foundation from which we plan to introduce other unique educational opportunities for HBCU students to experience our global destinations and gain even more perspective into the industry. We look forward to hosting this talented group of students.”