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Alumni Profile: Vanda Sok '16
The best alumni success stories come from the faculty and staff here at the College who keep in touch with their students. One example, shared earlier this fall, features a former hospitality student who was recognized for his success in the classroom and in the workplace. Marian McGorry, Dean of Business Computing and Social Science, was excited to share the story of one student recently honored by peers at a large industry event.
Vanda Sok ’16 graduated from the College with a degree in Hotel and Restaurant Management before transferring to Widener University to continue his studies in their Center for Experience Management in Tourism and Hospitality. In addition to his studies, he is applying his skills as a full-time associate with the Philadelphia Airport Marriott. His work involves assisting guests from check in to check out while ensuring a superior visit in one of the regions busiest hotel properties. Vanda, originally from Cambodia, says in the future he plans “to contribute and enhance the hospitality quality” in his home country and hopes to one day run his own hotel or restaurant.
The Greater Philadelphia Hotel Association honored Vanda as one of four recipients of the Michael Boyle Scholarship at their Heart of Philadelphia Luncheon in October. The event is intended to highlight students who personify the best practices of the hospitality industry. The luncheon was hosted by Philadelphia sports broadcaster veteran Merrill Reese and included a ceremonial Philadelphia Eagles jersey for each recipient. As one of our star students, Dean McGorry is proud of all Vanda’s achievements “What a pleasure it is to see Vanda succeeding and continuing his education in the Hospitality Management Program at Widener University. As an honor student and part time employee, he is a great example of the best parts of our program.”
During his time at the College, Vanda was also a dedicated honors student. He took his English as a Second Language coursework while also earning high marks and receiving the Phi Theta Kappa and Hyatt Hotel Funds for Minority Lodging Management Students and Ecolab Scholarships. His advice to past, present and future students is to “pursue what you love and work hard to make it happen. We should appreciate Delaware County Community College because the school helps make us who we are today.”
As many of you will be traveling this holiday season, we hope you experience great hospitality from alumni like Vanda wherever your journeys lead.
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