Educator Profile: Jason Draper

Dr. Draper teaches at the Conrad N. Hilton College of Hotel and Restaurant Management. Yes, the same Hilton as in Hilton Hotels. And he brings lots of real world experience to his job, so his students will walk out prepared with real-world applications.

Jason DraperName:  Jason Draper
Degree/Designation: Ph.D. in Parks, Recreation, and Tourism Management from Clemson University
Years in the Industry: Five plus years as Research Manager at the Chicago Convention and Tourism Bureau and about two years work for a group tour company
Years as an Educator: Middle of second year
Name of Institution: University of Houston
Program/Educational Focus: Conrad N. Hilton College of Hotel and Restaurant Management.
Hilton College, which offers both undergraduate and graduate degrees in hotel and restaurant management and hospitality management, has become a world leader in hospitality education and is consistently ranked one of the top-ranked hospitality programs in the world. Currently, students from 34 countries study here.
How Long the Program has been around: Since 1969
Number of Students in Program: There are currently 1136 students enrolled at the Hilton College (1,022 undergrad; 114 grad).
Favorite subject you teach and why: Currently teaching a graduate Events Administration class.  The focus of the class is the students actually helping plan two events.  It is interesting to see them work together and address all of the challenges.

What issues do you see challenging students now and in the coming years? How can they best prepare?  I think students will be challenged by the constant change in the hospitality and tourism industry.  They can best prepare by getting hands-on experience through internships, shadowing someone working in the industry, volunteering at events, and employment at various levels.  Another key is the ability to communicate effectively and work with others.
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