The following interview was conducted by Tisch Center student worker, Haley Park.
What made you decide that you wanted to study at the Tisch Center and pursue a career in this industry?
I was originally exposed to the industry by my parents from a very young age as they themselves are owners of hotels. After some self-reflection, I decided I wanted to follow in my parents’ footsteps. I find the hospitality industry to be very unique. Since I am on the finance side of the industry, the problem-solving aspect is really interesting in addition to the business operations that change daily while managing huge capital expenditure. I also think it’s fascinating how close the industry is to the consumer. In this industry, you are the one creating the service at the same time the consumer is using it. This allows for a very intimate interaction with the consumer and it’s a fun and rewarding part of the job.
What has been one of your favorite classes at the Tisch Center?
Currently I’m taking a Design and Development course which walks us through the hotel development process from the idea phase to the grand opening phase and every step in between. It’s very aligned with what I want to ultimately do. We get to learn from the former President of Global Development at Starwood Hotels, Professor Simon Turner. He is the best and most experienced person you can ask to teach a course about hotel development.
Is there any particular experience at the Tisch Center that is memorable to you?
All the special events, organized by the school, stick out to me. From the Head of Google Travel, to a panel a four “game-changers” in the hospitality industry, moderated by the CEO of Virtuoso. It was a really cool event where we got to sit front row before some of the leaders who were changing the industry. In addition to this event, I also attended the Distinguished Lecturer series featuring the CEO of Starwood (Frits Van Paasschen), the CEO of Norwegian Cruise Lines (Frank Del Rio) and the COO of Marriott (David Marriott).
What do you see yourself doing in the future?
I see myself on the development acquisitions and investments side of the hotel development portfolio group. Among other things, this includes sourcing deals, finding property that can be turned around.
Is there anything else you want to share?
One thing that stands out to me at NYU is the connections the school has with the industry. I’ve had two jobs within a year with the help of the Tisch Center. NYU helped me to get my foot in the door and the classes have provided me with a strong foundation of the industry. In addition, the class size of the graduate program is very intimate. It typically ranges from 8-12 students typically. This allows students to get to know professors very well.