From left, Purdue President Mitch Daniels; Liam Brown, Group President, United States and Canada, Marriott International; Bruce White, Founder and CEO of White Lodging; and Michael Berghoff, Chairman of the Purdue Board of Trustees, attended the renaming of the University’s Hospitality and Tourism Management School to The White Lodging – JW Marriott, Jr. School of Hospitality and Tourism Management at Purdue University. (Photo provided by White Lodging)

Purdue University School of Hospitality and Tourism Management is now called White Lodging – JW Marriott, Jr. School of Hospitality and Tourism Management.

The college’s board of trustees approved the name change on October 1. Bruce White, founder of Merrillville-based White Lodging, is a longtime Purdue supporter. Marriott Jr., Executive Chairman and Chairman of the Board of Directors of Marriott International.

The $ 5 million commitment from Bruce and Beth White and the Dean and Barbara White Family Foundation provides the foundation for an honorary hospitality program, a top-tier hospitality scholarship, and a named school director. This follows a pledge from Bruce and Beth White and the Dean and Barbara White Family Foundation of $ 30 million in 2018 to Purdue for the redesign of the historic Union Club Hotel.

“Our goal is to create an environment that enables employees to do their best and grow through training, development and mentoring,” said Bruce White. “This goal is a foundation that Bill and the Marriott team have built for the hospitality industry and that they continue to support at all levels.”

Marriott said it was humiliated by the recognition.

“We have had a wonderful relationship with White Lodging and Bruce and Beth White for decades,” he said. “We have a long relationship with Purdue too, and I am grateful to be part of this initiative that is preparing future hospitality leaders.”

The Marriott family has a longstanding relationship with Purdue, including the J. Willard and Alice S. Marriott Foundation, which made the $ 5 million major donation in 2012 to help create the Marriott Hall on the Purdue campus. The Marriott family also supports the annual Marriott Executive in the Classroom series, which brings hospitality executives to West Lafayette to share with students about industry career paths and visit faculties for business insights to enhance the learning experience of the Students improve.

In 2020, the nearly 92-year-old 182-room Union Club Hotel reopened after an extensive one-year conversion of $ 35 million on campus. The project included a complete overhaul of all guest rooms and public areas, as well as the creation of three dining concepts that pay tribute to Purdue’s heritage.

The original Purdue architecture and academically inspired design are preserved in carpet patterns, upholstery, room furnishings and myriad other elements in the hotel.

The hotel is also used as a hands-on learning lab for Purdue hospitality students, where they can spend time working and learning about hotel and restaurant operations while earning college credits. In addition, the Union Club Hotel hosts the White Lodging LAUNCH Hospitality Immersion Program, which aims to bring high-profile university students into the industry through paid, hands-on experience.

Larry Avila

Larry is an award-winning journalist with over 25 years of experience working with daily newspapers and business-to-business publications in the Midwest. Avila is a native of Michigan and a graduate of Central Michigan University.

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