From the beginning of the academic year, the MBA in Hospitality Management IMHI class of 2015 has been exposed to challenging academic and hands-on experiences to provide them with the skills necessary to achieve their career goals. On the 16th of July 2015, all their efforts and hard work paid off as they received their diplomas during the MBA in Hospitality Management graduation ceremony, and are now about to embark on the first steps of their professional journeys.
Past Academic Director Peter O’Connor, who will return to this position in the new academic year, confidently told the students:
"You now know how to push yourself beyond your limits, you are aware of your capabilities, where your strengths and weaknesses lie... You are young, talented, enthusiastic, inter-culturally aware and internationally exposed people who are needed by the hotel, food and travel services."
Congratulations to valedictorians Cecile Leclerc Vaché from the 1-year-track and Laura Dutrieux from the 2-year-track who upheld the strong IMHI values of academic excellence and achieved the strongest academic results in their class.
The Alumni Association also recently elected a new President, Laurent Michaud H01. He expressd his excitement at welcoming these new graduates to the IMHI community and to working with the new board to expand IMHI’s presence internationally and evolve into the digital realm.
The IMHI Hall of Honour inducted two inspirational individuals from the hospitality sector for 2015, Evelyne Chabrot and Olivier Chavy, who have achieved highly successful careers whilst continuing to support IMHI and the students throughout the years.
Evelyne started off her career in 1974 as a housekeeper in the Novotel Hotel in Coventry UK of which she eventually became the General Manager. From her modest positions in operations, she advanced through the industry, eventually managing over 45,000 people as the Director of Human Resources of the Middle East, Europe and Africa. Evelyne is now the Senior Vice President of Human Relations at Accor. Since 1994 Evelyne has worked closely with IMHI to put a number of industry changing educational institutions in place. She was heavily involved in introducing the apprenticeship partnership between IMHI and Accor, and she also put in the place Accor’s IHMP management development program between Accor and IMHI for high potential future General Managers, in which IMHI plays an integral part.
Current CEO and President of Wilson Associates, Olivier Chavy has experienced a highly successful and diverse international career since graduating from IMHI in 1988. After working as General Manager of Luxury Properties at Lucien Barrière, in 2000 Olivier moved on to Hilton Corporation as a General Manager in Mauritius, afterwards launching the Hilton Arc de Triomphe property in 2003. Olivier continued to advance through the company being named Senior Vice President of Resort Operations for Hilton Grand Vacations in 2006 and International Head of Lifestyle and Luxury Brands for Hilton Worldwide in 2010.
Olivier continually offers his availability to students if they need advice; regularly participates in conferences and other events at ESSEC Business School as well as also contributeing to classes and student projects.
A very special thank you to Professor Nicolas Graf who has lead the MBA in Hospitality Management IMHI as Academic Director for the past 2 years and will be moving on to other ventures in the new academic year.
We wish the students all the very best as they embark on their professional journeys and we also look forward to following their careers with great pride and enjoyment.
As stated by Peter O’Connor: