In a ceremony on Friday, December 4, 14 students from The School of Hospitality Business at MSU were awarded certification in Hotel Industry Analytics (CHIA). Most of the students are members of The School’s Real Estate Investment Club.

CHIA 2015“We are pleased that each student passed the exam,” says Dr. A.J. Singh, Hilton Hotels fellow and director of the Hospitality Business Real Estate Investment Management minor. “The study program and test are rigorous; the certification will make our students stronger and more marketable.”

The CHIA is offered through a joint effort between the American Hotel & Lodging Educational Institute (AH&LEI), the International Council on Hotel, Restaurant, and Institutional Education (ICHRIE), and Smith Travel Research (STR). In fact, it is the only hotel-related certification for university students graduating from hospitality and tourism programs.

According to STR, the certification demonstrates a student’s “thorough knowledge of the foundational metrics and definitions that are used by the hotel industry.” Recipients have the “ability to analyze various types of hotel industry data and to make strategic inferences based upon that analysis. Certification also confirms a comprehensive understanding of benchmarking and performance reports produced by STR. Recipients have a grasp of the current landscape of the hotel industry, including relevant current events.”

The exam tests four content areas: Hotel Industry Analytical Foundations, Hotel Math 101 (metrics used by the industry), Property Level Benchmarking Reports, and Ad-hoc Performance Reports.

“We are always striving to give our students an ‘edge’ as they begin their careers,” explains Authella Collins Hawks, director of The School’s Student and Industry Resource Center (SIRC). “So we complement their classroom education with additional learning experiences such as the CHIA.” In fact, The School’s culture places an emphasis on all kinds of educational opportunities for its students, including travel to industry conferences, Dale Carnegie Training, dozens of property tours, over 75 professional development programs on- and off-campus each year, and as many as 100 visiting leaders coming to speak to students annually.

In each of these endeavors, scholarships and endowments established in The School help to cover the costs to students associated with registration, travel, or study materials.