Haley Apel | Education and Human Sciences, UNL
The University of Nebraska-Lincoln received a $1.6 million grant from the U.S. Department of Commerce to complete an academic facility offering real-life education within the Scarlet Hotel.
The funds will help kick-start construction of a 100-seat classroom and office space within the hotel, providing new opportunities for Huskers seeking hospitality, restaurant and tourism management degrees through the College of Education and Human Sciences.
“This significant investment from the US Department of Commerce underscores that Nebraska’s HRTM program is an integral force in the future of the hospitality industry,” said Sherri Jones, dean of the College of Education and Human Sciences. “Once completed, the academic space at the Scarlet Hotel will serve as a hands-on learning laboratory for our students to develop their professional skills.”
Located on the university’s Nebraska Innovation Campus, the Scarlet Hotel is a 154-room Marriott Tribute hotel. Opened in April, the facility was designed to serve as both a hotel for visitors to the University and the Lincoln community and a hands-on teaching space for students seeking careers in the hospitality industry.
“It will be a space where every day you will see our students, faculty and staff actively participate in, support and learn about the operations of a real-world working hotel,” said Chancellor Ronnie Green. “It will be convenient and an amazing experience opportunity for our students.”
The grant is funded through the Department of Economic Development Administrations’ American Rescue Plan Travel, Tourism, and Outdoor Recreation Program. This federal support will fund state-of-the-art classroom and learning areas where students and other learners will deepen their engagement and practice of service excellence expected in the hospitality industry.
Additional fundraising will support a teaching and learning kitchen for students and hospitality professionals to improve their food service management skills. The facility will help grow the workforce in Nebraska and beyond for employment in the tourism, hospitality, events and entertainment industries. “The Economic Development Administration is committed to supporting community-led economic development strategies,” said Alejandra Y. Castillo, Assistant Secretary of Commerce for Economic Development. “The new facility will provide classrooms, offices and learning spaces to train professionals in the hospitality, travel and tourism industries, leading to well-paying jobs in the regional economy.”
The hospitality industry is the third largest earner in Nebraska and one of the largest industries in the world. In the United States, the industry accounts for more than $1.6 trillion in economic output and one in 10 jobs.
Students in the University of Nebraska–Lincoln Hospitality Management major choose from six areas of focus: Hospitality Management, Club Management, Event Management, Food and Beverage Management, Tourism, and Human Resources .
Exclusive spaces within the full-service Scarlet Hotel will offer unique classes for students. These spaces include The Good Life Coffee Shop; Well & Good, the hotel’s signature restaurant; and the Barred Owl, a rooftop bar with incredible views of Lincoln. The hotel’s restaurant, bar, and cafe are open to the public and offer Nebraska-inspired food and drink.