Miami Dade College Homepage > MDC in the News

MDC's Hospitality Institute to Offer Customer Service Training and Job Opportunities to Inner City Residents

The next session will be held May 4 and 5 at the Greater Bethel A.M.E. Church in Miami
Hospitality Institute-Nov08

Participants in the MDC Hospitality Institute listen to a presentation given by Frank Ferrara, director of Food Services at Camillus House, during the first training session held in November 2008. The Institute provides customer service training to inner city residents and connects them to local job opportunities.

Miami, April 27, 2009 - Last fall, Miami Dade College launched its new Center for Service Excellence (CSE) at the annual meeting of the Greater Miami Convention and Visitors Bureau aimed at providing customer service training to the region’s businesses and business organizations. Now, MDC has launched the Hospitality Institute within the CSE to specifically connect job opportunities in the local hospitality industry with Miami’s inner city residents through customer service and job readiness training.

The next training session is scheduled for May 4 and 5 at the Greater Bethel A.M.E. Church in Miami. A graduation ceremony and job fair will take place May 7.

The media is encouraged to attend these sessions. More than 350 people have gone through the Institute already. The Hospitality Institute is housed at the Greater Bethel A.M.E. Church in the historic Overtown neighborhood of Miami. It was first established in January 2008 and became part of MDC last fall.

Trainers from Miami Dade College, together with hospitality employers, the Greater Miami Visitors and Convention Bureau, and motivational speakers, provide instruction regarding customer service, successfully completing job applications and interviews, tips on appearance, keys to successful employment, how to access further education and other important subjects.

Former graduates who are success stories also return to speak to new students. The trailblazing initiative is truly unique because it offers a full spectrum of services to the students that make them job ready including the aforementioned training, a certificate of completion, gift certificates for professional attire from an area thrift store and job placement services.

Most of the students are formerly homeless or have had brushes with the law, but are committed to reentering the workforce and contributing to the community.

Some of the discussions in the training sessions include Creating a Professional Image, Professional Interview Training, Delivering Quality Guest Services, Basic Computer Training, Applying for Jobs Online and many other helpful workshops aimed at helping students gain quality employment.

WHAT:      MDC’s Hospitality Institute's Next Training Session

WHERE:   Greater Bethel A.M.E. Church, 245 N.W. Eighth St., Miami  

WHEN:      May 4 and 5:  Training session, 9:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m.

                   May 7:  Graduation and Job Fair, 9:00 a.m. – 2:00 p.m.


For more information regarding the Hospitality Institute and to attend (as a member of the media) an upcoming training session, contact Jeanne Westphal at 305-329-2845 or at


Media-only contacts:
Juan Mendieta, 305-237-7611,, MDC communications director
Tarnell Carroll, 305-237-3359,, media specialist
Sue Arrowsmith, 305-237-3710,, media specialist
Alejandro Rios, 305-237-7482,

Miami Dade College is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges to award associate and baccalaureate degrees.
Contact the Commission on Colleges at 1866 Southern Lane, Decatur, Georgia 30033-4097 or call 404-679-4500 for questions about the accreditation of Miami Dade College.
Miami Dade College is an equal access/equal opportunity institution and does not discriminate on the basis of gender, race, color, marital status, age, religion, national origin,
ethnicity, pregnancy, disability, veteran's status, sexual orientation, or genetic information.
Contact the Office of Director, Equal Opportunity Programs, ADA and Title IX Coordinator, at 305.237.2577 for assistance.