Spring 2018 Newsletter | Troy University

Spring 2018 Newsletter

Spring 2018

Faculty News

HSTM Professor Highlights— Dr. Patrick Holladay

      Dr. Holladay earned his Ph.D. from Clemson University in Parks, Recreation & Tourism Management with an emphasis in Travel & Tourism; a M.S. from Eastern Kentucky University in Biological Sciences with an emphasis in Applied Ecology; and a B.S. from Clemson University in
Aquaculture, Fisheries & Wildlife Biology with an emphasis in Wildlife Biology. It is safe to say Dr. Holladay knows quite a bit about tourism and the effects humans have on the ecosystem on a grand scale. He has contributed his fair share to research and has also helped students reach successful levels. In particular, he supervised a Masters Degree student at the University of Akureyi, in Iceland to the successful completion and thesis defense for the award of a MS
in Resource Management: Coastal and Marine Management.
     Dr. Holladay has also contributed some of his time to educational literature. He along with other colleagues Weis, K. and Chambers, C. (2018), wrote a chapter entitled Social-ecological resilience and the role of tourism in Dominica. This was in C. Patrick Heidkamp & J. Morrisey (Eds.), Towards Coastal Resilience and Sustainability. New York: Routledge.
     In addition to his university work, Dr. Holladay assisted with the Georgia Department of Economic Development Tourism Product Development Funding. A $10,000 Grant – Historical Harrington School Interpretation Materials Project assisted in an African American heritage tourism development project in Glynn County, GA. Dr. Holladay also earned the opportunity to act as a research consultant in Puerto Rico to the communities of Utuado in the development of agritourism as a socio-economic development tool as part of the recovery process from the devastation of Hurricane Maria through the $3,000 Troy University Summer Research Grant.

HSTM Student

Cassidy McDilda--Sport Management
Spring 2018 Graduate Bachelor of Science in HSTM—Sport Management

     Cassidy McDilda, a senior from Gainesville, Florida, is a driven and passionate student in the School of HSTM. Cassidy was recruited to play softball at TROY and immediately knew it was where she was meant to be. Between the small town feel and the international campus, she knew that TROY would be a great place to get a quality education.
     After concluding her freshman year at TROY as an Exercise Science major, she decided to switch her major to HSTM with a concentration in Sport Management. She wanted to pursue a career in strength and conditioning coaching but realized that she was actually interested in sport administration. She stated that “the School of HSTM has provided her with the knowledge,
experience and opportunities to truly make an impact in college athletics.” The curriculum is built for students to graduate with a diverse and in-depth understanding of athletics while gaining invaluable experience in their prospective fields.
     Since becoming a student in the School of HSTM, Cassidy has gained experience in event management, sales, operations and compliance. She was even encouraged to join the Student-Athlete Advisory Committee (SAAC) and is now currently serving as president. During the Summer of 2017, Cassidy had the opportunity to intern at the University of Florida Athletic Association in the Operations Department. She is on track to graduate in the Spring of 2018 and
intends on attending graduate school in the Fall of 2018. She wants to pursue a career in college athletics administration with the hopes of one day becoming a college athletics director.


Torey Tucker--Hospitality Management
Spring 2018 Graduate Bachelor of Science in HSTM—Hospitality Management

    Torey Tucker, a senior Hospitality Management student from Pensacola, Florida, became aware of the HSTM program through a friends older sibling who had gone through the program at TROY a few years prior. She decided on this major because of her love for people and her passion to help others achieve their goals. She chose an Event Management minor the first year it was integrated into the program at TROY and has since loved it every step of the way. One of the reasons she chose Event Management to minor in is because she has always had great organization and time management skills, which are essential for success in event management.       Torey is a member of the HSTM Honors Society and says her favorite part of the program here at TROY is the way the professors truly care about their student’s accomplishments and take the time to teach them life skills that will be utilized in their future careers. This program provides students with a plethora of hands-on learning experiences and opportunities so that when it is time to be in the real world, the students feel equipped with the skills they will need to be successful.
     So far, she has completed one summer internship with HarborWalk Village in Destin, Florida. During this internship she focused on marketing and events, and she is now currently in the process of completing her second internship working in Event Coordinating at B Graves in Troy. Torey believes that the best part about the Hospitality industry is that it is always growing, and the opportunities seem endless. After graduation she plans on pursuing her love for special events and hopes to find a career in wedding planning.

Internship Success Story

Jordon Bonner
Graduated Summer 2017 Bachelor of Science in HSTM—Hospitality Management

     “I currently work with Kaiser Realty by Wyndham Vacation Rentals in Gulf Shores, Alabama. While obtaining my degree from TROY, I accepted an internship with Resort Quest in Destin, Florida. Over the course of 12 weeks my primary task was working at the front desk as a guest service agent, and in housekeeping as a quality assurance inspector. It was important that we worked and trained in both the front and back of the house to realize the importance of each department and how interdependent they are to one another. Having previous experience working in hotels provided a great foundation in preparing me to be successful during my internship; however, moving into the vacation rental spectrum added new information to my repertoire.”
     Throughout the internship, our mentors and managers went above and beyond to help us grow in our respective fields while also providing us with ample opportunities to network with the company. By maximizing those opportunities, I was offered a full-time position with the company as a Homeowner Liaison. The primary role as a liaison is to correspond with the owners regarding their property status and availability and also coordinating with vendors while also ensuring the property is up to Kaiser standards.
     “As Wyndham has started the process in becoming two publicly traded companies, Wyndham Hotel Group (Parsippany, NJ) and Wyndham Vacation Ownership (Orlando, FL), my goal is to continue down the management track as an area manager next, then become an executive general manager and ultimately transfer to the corporate headquarters in Orlando. I can definitely say that the faculty at TROY played an instrumental role in my career success. While the classes were hard at times, the information and experience that I gained has been key in achieving what I’ve done so far and pursing my future endeavors.”


Leanne Propst
Account Coordinator A.I.M. Marketing Solutions Graduated Fall 2017 Bachelor of Science in HSTM—Sport Management

What are some of your duties as the Account Coordinator for AIM Marketing Solutions?

“I work under our SunTrust account and manage all of the ticket assets that SunTrust has throughout the Southeast and up the East Coast as these tickets are used by bankers for client entertainment. I am in charge of distribution of these tickets as well as reporting attendee information. I also work on the sponsorship side within reporting sponsorship requests that SunTrust receives so they can be evaluated. I really like learning more about sponsorships on the corporate side because I have been on the other side asking for a sponsorship and now I see how they get evaluated, why they are approved or denied and the whole process of renewals.”

How did your experience at TROY help you find your position after graduation?

“My experience at TROY required me to become comfortable in what I considered uncomfortable situations. The practice of the interview process that I got from taking the Senior Seminar class helped me tremendously because I felt more comfortable and confident when interviewing for this job. Funny story, I initially learned about AIM as a company back in October when I was doing my Senior Seminar professional portfolio binder. Then in March I was looking around at Atlanta sports marketing agencies and AIM’s website came up and I went on their website again and they had a posting for this full-time position.” 

What has been your most memorable experience since graduating from TROY?

My most memorable experience has definitely been getting this job at AIM. I moved to Atlanta right after graduation with a job at The Aspire Group as a Sales Associate, and shortly after starting I realized that job was just not for me and I starting looking for other options. Long story short…if I had not taken the sales associate job then I probably would not have found my current job here at AIM.


Taylor Edwards
Recruiting Coordinator of Football University of Arkansas Graduated Spring 2013 Master of Science in Sport and Fitness Management

What are some of your duties as the Recruiting Coordinator of Football?

“Organizing and executing a 12-month recruiting plan for on and off campus.”

How did your experience at TROY help you find your first position after graduation?

“I worked in the athletics department as a graduate assistant, and the networking and connections I made were huge for me. I was able to get linked up with people that not only were willing to help me pursue my goals but were very instrumental in obtaining some of them so far.”

What has been your most memorable experience since graduating from TROY?

“I would have to say being in the building every day at Alabama last football season as the team won the National Championship. It was incredible to see how much work and effort went into obtaining that goal. To see the ups and downs of a season, and how well the players and coaches maintained the same level of consistency each and every day was amazing.”

If you could give HSTM students once piece of advice, what would it be?

“Follow your heart in what you want to do with your life. Work your butt off to get where you want to go, and don’t let bumps in the road get you off your plan!”

What qualities do you look for when searching for a new hire?

“Hiring someone is tough. Everyone looks or seems great during an interview (most of the time), but I go off of connections and people that I trust. I want to feel like I know the person I am hiring and listening to the ones you do know helps. I want someone that works hard. If you will work hard, the rest will come.”


Lindsay Lacasse
Event Manager HarborWalk Village Graduated Fall 2017 Bachelor of Science in HSTM— Hospitality Management

What are some of your duties as the Assistant Director of Communications?

“As the event manager for HarborWalk Village, I work directly underneath the event director and as a team we are in charge of executing large scale events on the harbor throughout the year. The size of the events range from 600 to 6,000 and include events like themed pub crawls, weekly parades, and our ever-so-popular Tequila & Taco Festival. My position also includes a lot of marketing duties as well. We are in charge of marketing out events both physically and electronically...It keeps me busy!”

How did your experience at TROY help you find your first position after graduation?

“I started out as an intern here at HarborWalk Village the summer before I graduated. The way I discovered the position was through another TROY alum. Abby recruited us as interns, and right before I graduated I was contacted and offered a full time position. TROY helped me make connections I thought I never could. The HSTM program specifically helped me with my resume and interview skills, which I will carry with me in every position I have in life.”

If you could give HSTM students one piece of advice, what would it be?

“Making connections is the most important thing in any “people” related business. Make sure you are memorable when meeting people in the industry you want to thrive in! Never lose sight of your goals, smile big, and most importantly get on Dr. Dixon’s good side.


Owen Cole: Niceville High School
Niceville, Fl

Andrew Crane: Troy Sports Properties
Troy, Al

Keona DeJarnett: TROY Student-Athlete Services
Troy, Al

James Dye: TROY Football
Troy, Al

Chelsea Gilmore: Wynlakes Golf & Country Club
Montgomery, Al

Nathan Edwards: Tennessee Smokies Baseball
Kodak, Tn

Nancy Karaky: TROY Strength & Conditioning
Troy, Al

2018 Interns!

Sirui Li: Courtyard by Marriott
Troy, Al

Jalen Mims: TROY Campus Recreation
Troy, Al

Lane Moreman: Guest Services, Inc.
Fairfax, Va

Michael Parham: TROY Athletics
Troy, Al

Trent Patterson: TROY Men’s Basketball
Troy, Al

Darius Reid: Troy Parks & Recreation
Troy, Al

Irving Stratton: Boy’s & Girl’s Club
Troy, Al

Angel Ware: Santa Rosa County Chamber of Commerce
Milton, Fl

Fletcher Whiddon: Daktronics Inc.
Brookings, SD

Kaitlyn Russ: Troy Athletic Ticket Office
Troy, AL

HSTM Charity Golf Tournament

     The School of HSTM hosted the 10th Annual HSTM Charity Golf Tournament at the Troy Country Club on March 26th. There was a record number of participants as there were 17 teams of 4 players and one additional team of 3 members, as reported by HSTM student Trent Patterson. As a requirement for the Event Management course, all students were required to assist with the planning and execution of this event. Patterson served on the Event Operation Committee for the class offered on campus and explained, “We helped Dr. [Christina] Martin organize the schedule of tournament, recruit sponsors and teams to participate, scheduled food delivery and service.” Janard Estell, another HSTM student, stated that he was impressed with the overall turnout of the event and actually exceeded his expectations. He went on to say, as long as he is in the area that he would definitely participate in anyway necessary to again ensure the success of this event.
     The funds allocated from the tournament were donated to the Boys and Girls Club of Troy. Last year, $2,500 was donated but with numbers increasing during this years’ tournament, we could expect an even larger donation! The tournament is looking to grow its participation even more, as they are using it to benefit the young children of the community, while enjoying the comradery of friends and colleagues. Be on the lookout for this event next year.


HSTM Fun Fest

The HSTM Fun Fest held at the Troy SportsPlex was also another successful event put on by the HSTM students under the supervision of Dr. Christina Martin. The children of the community were given the opportunity to come out and have a good time by playing different games and engaging in activities such as relay races, bouncy houses, “home run derby”, and softball pitching simulations amongst other fun activities. The undergraduate Event Management class was responsible for the overall planning, seeking out sponsors to assist with the funding of the event, and promoting the event to the community. There was a great turnout and all those involved, whether volunteering or participating, appeared to have a great time.

HSTM Summit

The HSTM Summit provided senior students the opportunity to present their projects that they worked tirelessly on throughout the semester. Students spent many hours in the HSTM offices meeting with their professors to perfect the information they were researching, analyzing, and forming to present a sales pitch to a panel of investors (HSTM professors). Objectively, relief felt by the students was always evident following the completion of their presentations. Callie Wallace, who assisted with the coordinating of the Summit stated that they enjoyed witnessing the relief shown by their fellow scholars. They, too, are seniors who presented at the Summit, so they also felt the pressure applied by the HSTM professors during the Q&A panel session.

HSTM Conference

The 2018 HSTM Conference was one to remember, as many great speakers gave the students their monies worth. It was a time well spent with presenters from different companies and organizations around the Southeast. The conference was coordinated by the Graduate Event Management course, under the supervision of Dr. Fred Green. In addition to the speeches given, an internship fair was available for students to take the opportunity to network with some of the familiar faces from the podium. Titus Thomas, who is currently pursuing his Master’s degree in Sport Management, gave some insight into his role. “I acted as the Technology and Event Logistics Committee Chair. Essentially, my responsibilities were to obtain guest speakers and the technology needed to effectively relay the information produced by the speakers. Dalton Fuller and Carl Tang also assisted with these efforts. We were in charge of designing the HSTM Conference Program booklets and the Conference plaque, as well.” The Conference started out with a bang by having the Troy Trojans head football coach, Neal Brown, speak to the attendees. Troy Athletics Director, Jeremy McClain, and the Sun Belt Commissioner, Karl Benson, also graced the Conference with their presence and thoughts on hard work, dedication, and touched on the importance of networking in the sport industry. All in all, the event was a great opportunity for students to gain knowledge and interact with professionals who are acclimated to the industries of hospitality, sports and tourism.

HSTM Banquet

The HSTM Banquet capped off the ending of a great semester for both students and staff. The students were able to gain hands on experience throughout the semester with preparing and hosting different events. The banquet was held to acknowledge and honor the hard work put forth this semester by the HSTM students. Dr. Dixon shared a few words with everyone, awards were given out to both students and staff and delicious food was catered by Hooks BBQ. Immediately following the banquet, everyone enjoyed a tailgate at the TROY Baseball game on a beautiful Saturday afternoon. Some participated in an intriguing game of wiffleball, and yes, that is Dr. Dixon to your left preparing to swing the bat. All in all, this was a great event and those involved evidently enjoyed themselves.

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