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STAFF CONTACT

Monika Zuluaga

Vice President, Membership & Marketing

401-223-1120, ext. 116

Monika@rihospitality.org

Dale's Corner

This blog is written by Dale J. Venturini, President/CEO of RI Hospitality Association (RIHA) and RI Hospitality Education Foundation (RIHEF). Its purpose is to engage RIHA members with current issues and trends.

The hospitality industry is a continuously growing segment of the U.S. economic picture. This year alone, the restaurant industry is expected to realize $783 billion in sales and employ 14.4 million in good-paying jobs, according to the National Restaurant Association’s 2016 Restaurant Industry Forecast.

Among the key challenges restaurants and other segments of the industry are facing, in addition to legislative and regulatory hurdles, is retaining and recruiting employees. While the restaurant industry added approximately 2 million jobs since the nation’s economic recovery in 2010, which equates to roughly 900 new jobs per day, maintaining a quality workforce is still a challenge.

Over the past year, we have heard from many of our members who are facing difficulty in finding and keeping qualified employees. This brings up a much bigger challenge: the necessity of providing programming to adequately train our existing and next generation of the workforce. The RI Hospitality Education Foundation has trained thousands and thousands of students and adult learners over the years, helping to further their education, gain valuable new skills, or adjust to a changing career path.

Our training is funded in large part through state and federal grants. And, while the hospitality industry is one of the biggest revenue-generators for the state, we are often overlooked when it comes time to allocate training dollars in favor of other established industries. It seems that the general consensus is that the hospitality industry doesn’t create good-paying jobs.

However, restaurants added middle-class jobs at a rate four times higher than the overall economy. Between 2010 and 2014, the number of restaurant jobs with an income range between $45,000 – $74,999 rose nearly 38%. The number of jobs in this range in all other segments of the economy rose just 8% in the same period. This tells us that there is room for growth and advancement for employees equipped with the right tools.

Fortunately, we have recently formed partnerships that we believe have the ability to positively assist workers who want to reach that next rung on their career ladder. The RI Hospitality Association in partnership with the National Restaurant Association’s ManageFirst® program, Real Jobs Rhode Island, the National Restaurant Association Educational Foundation and the RI Hospitality Training Academy, recently launched a program to help workers within the hospitality industry gain the necessary tools and training to advance their careers with the industry.

The course, RI Food Management Training Program, will be open to anyone who is currently working within the industry in the state of Rhode Island, and who wants to learn the tools necessary to advance his/her career. During the 10-week course, which meets once a week for an eight-hour period, employees will have the opportunity to earn valuable industry certifications including: ManageFirst, which provides certification in hospitality and restaurant management, hospitality and human resources management and supervision, and controlling food service costs. Students will also earn the ServSafe® Essentials Food Safety Managers Certification.

In addition, students who successfully complete and pass all four courses including an elective and have 800 hours of industry work experience will also receive the Professional (MPF) Credential. Electives consist of a wealth of industry topics from accounting, to customer service, to nutrition, marketing and bar and beverage management – all necessary skills in furthering a career within the hospitality industry.

The RI Hospitality Association will be accepting a select number of applicants this fall, and the cost of the classes, which range from $745 – $995 depending on membership status, represents a drastic discount on similar courses being offered in nearby educational institutions. In addition, the RI Hospitality Education Foundation will offer scholarships up to $500.00 for the first six applicants. The program, valued at $4,500, is provided by funding from Real Jobs RI.


List of Articles
No. Subject Author Date
40 The Best and Brightest Shine Brightly at RIHA’s Stars of the Industry Event file Monika Jan 15, 2019
Well, we did it again…Rhode Island’s amazing hospitality industry converged on Twin River Casino Hotel to celebrate our best and brightest of 2018. This annual event is truly the highlight of my year, and even though it takes an enormous amo...  
39 ‘Tis the Season of Giving Monika Sep 20, 2018
Hope everyone had a wonderful summer filled with rest, relaxation and rejuvenation and is now raring to go! We are fully in the season of giving – no, not the holidays – but, an even more stressful time of the year, the political season. Now...  
38 That’s a Legislative Wrap! file Monika Aug 16, 2018
After a marathon session of debates and a flurry of votes, Rhode Island’s General Assembly has adjourned for the summer. With hundreds of bills in the mix, the RI Hospitality Association (RIHA) spent countless hours carefully monitoring each...  
37 Summer in New England: Be a Tourist in Your Own Backyard file Monika Jul 05, 2018
When many of us think about summer vacations, we think about jumping on a plane and traveling to a far-off destination. However, for those of us who are fortunate enough to live in New England, there’s no need to venture too far to enjoy som...  
36 Our Next Generation of Culinary Stars: Cooking and Planning Their Hearts Out file Monika Jun 11, 2018
Recently, Providence, RI hosted the National ProStart® Invitational (NPSI), the country’s premier secondary-school competition focused on restaurant management and culinary arts. We had some wonderful judges visit from all over the nation as...  
35 Swimming Down “STREAM” Monika May 15, 2018
Education is truly the foundation of success no matter what career path you choose. Some learning is done in traditional classrooms, and more practical experience is gained in the thick of it in a restaurant or hotel kitchen, lodging establi...  
34 The #MeToo Movement is More than a Hashtag file Monika Mar 02, 2018
While the #MeToo movement has become synonymous with the entertainment industry, its reach is far deeper than the bright lights and golden statues of Hollywood. From politics, to business, to manufacturing, to hospitality, the potential for ...  
33 “We are made of star-stuff. Our bodies are made of star-stuff. There are pieces of star within us all.” file Monika Jan 02, 2018
“We are made of star-stuff. Our bodies are made of star-stuff. There are pieces of star within us all.” – Carl Sagan There is no greater honor for me each year then to be part of our industry’s largest celebration! Each November, I look forw...  
32 Paid Sick Leave Passes RI Legislature file Monika Oct 10, 2017
In September, both the Rhode Island House and Senate passed legislation that will require companies to give employees paid sick leave. Although the RI Hospitality Association (RIHA) is generally opposed to mandates that impact the employer-e...  
31 When did ‘Entry Level’ become Negative? file Monika Sep 19, 2017
If there is one theme that has dominated the political landscape in Rhode Island for the last decade, it is without a doubt jobs and the economy. Though we have seen a rise in the local economy since the recession, talk of job creation still...  
30 Taking the High Road – the Road Less Traveled file Monika Jul 24, 2017
Normal 0 false false false EN-US KO AR-SA Dale J. Venturini President/CEO, RI Hospitality Association It is increasingly difficult to take the high road in today’s political climate. And, so few are doing it, but it is critically important....  
29 Paid Sick Leave – it’s Nothing to Sneeze at RIHA May 08, 2017
In Rhode Island and across the nation, we’ve seen a host of legislation introduced by out-of-state special interest groups that have squarely targeted the hospitality industry. From eliminating the federal tipped wage, to raising minimum wag...  
28 Buying Local for the Holidays Monika Nov 15, 2016
The holiday season is fast approaching…from a retail perspective, it seems to come earlier and earlier each year. While I was shopping for Halloween candy this year, I was sidestepping Christmas trees, holiday decorations and specialty choco...  
27 The Cost of ‘Chip’ Cards and Protecting Against Fraud Monika Oct 04, 2016
By Dale Venturini, President and CEO, R.I Hospitality Association  Many of us currently have an EMV credit or debit card – also known as a ‘chip’ card. These safer versions of the traditional magnetic-strip cards were designed to protect co...  
26 Gluten is Not Free in Restaurants file Monika Sep 01, 2016
Dale J. Venturini President/CEO, RI Hospitality Association We all know people who struggle with food allergies. From peanut butter, to shellfish, to strawberries, to dairy, the idea of dining out when one has a food allergy can be an alarmi...  
» Managing a Better Future file Monika Jun 30, 2016
The hospitality industry is a continuously growing segment of the U.S. economic picture. This year alone, the restaurant industry is expected to realize $783 billion in sales and employ 14.4 million in good-paying jobs, according to the Nati...  
24 Partnerships – They’re Not Always the Obvious Choice file Monika Jun 06, 2016
Dale J. Venturini President/CEO, RI Hospitality Association I’ve written extensively about the need to collaborate with organizations that share the same business interests. Whether a business partner’s mission is within your organization’s ...  
23 How Important is a Proactive Crisis Plan? Your Business Could Depend on it. Monika May 05, 2016
Dale J. Venturini President/CEO, RI Hospitality Association   With the spate of negative media headlines surrounding restaurants that have experienced foodborne or human-contact illness, it is critically important that every eating establis...  
22 Where Have the Teens Gone? file Monika Apr 04, 2016
Dale J. Venturini President/CEO, RI Hospitality Association It used to be that almost every teenager had a job in the hospitality industry. With flexible hours and class-friendly scheduling, our industry was the perfect landing spot for high...  
21 The Real Cost of Foodborne Illness file Monika Feb 02, 2016
Dale J. Venturini President/CEO, RI Hospitality Association Our food supply system, while infinitely safer and better regulated than most other parts of the world, still has its challenges. We’ve all seen the headlines and recalls from E. co...