This fall, five recent high school graduates from across South Florida began classes at Florida International University in the Chaplin School of Hospitality & Tourism Management as the third cohort of Carnival Gold Scholars, a program established by Carnival Foundation, the philanthropic arm of Carnival Corporation & plc.
Selected for their outstanding academics, personal ambition, and financial need, this new slate of scholars represents the pinnacle of pre-collegiate achievement.
After immigrating to the U.S. as a child, Taisha Coradin overcame language and cultural challenges to excel in high school, where she served three years in the Navy Junior ROTC. At FIU, she plans to focus on event management and culinary innovation.
Serena Beze was president of the Academy of Hospitality and Tourism in high school and plans to major in travel and tourism as she works to become the first member of her immediate family to graduate from college.
While helping her mother, who is disabled, Leah Esper found time for academics and activities in high school; she received the Hospitality and Tourism merit diploma for her exceptional extracurricular accomplishments. Her career goal is to work in communication, and travel and tourism.
Working part time to help her family, Dyani Roberts still found time in high school to serve as Vice President of the Distributive Education Clubs of America (DECA) chapter and place in the statewide competitions, and complete a year-long internship at the Marriott Harbor Beach Resort and Spa in Fort Lauderdale. After college, she wants to work in human relations within the hospitality industry.
Despite multiple relocations and family separations, Faith Snow found her focus in high school, where she received the Hospitality Excellence Award from the Florida Restaurant and Lodging Association. She wants to prepare for a career in hotel management.
Every Carnival Gold Scholar is rewarded for academic success with an annual scholarship renewal provided he or she remains in good academic standing. This results in a fully-funded bachelor’s degree, allowing the student to graduate without debt.
Including this latest gift, the Carnival Corporation, one of South Florida’s largest employers, has invested $1.2 million in the Carnival Gold Scholars program through Carnival Foundation.
“As a long-time supporter of our school and the South Florida community, Carnival Foundation is making a real difference in students’ lives,” said Mike Hampton, dean of FIU’s Chaplin School. “This scholarship donation continues to allow us to attract and retain the best students who, as tomorrow’s leaders, will be prepared to design and develop the customer experiences of the future. We couldn’t be more fortunate to collaborate with Carnival in shaping the future of the hospitality and tourism industry.”
The partnership between Carnival and FIU began in 2008 with a pledge from Carnival Foundation that led to the creation of the Carnival Student Center on FIU’s Biscayne Bay Campus.
“These five new Carnival Gold Scholars are an impressive addition to our program and we congratulate them on earning our scholarship, which will allow them to pursue their dream of working in hospitality and tourism,” said Linda Coll, executive director of Carnival Foundation. “Carnival Foundation is committed to working with FIU and the Chaplin School to create the next generation of industry professionals.”