This semester, Rosen College graduate students joined another timeshare industry titan to solve an important business challenge through the Masters Level Immersive Learning Project. During Fall 2014, Wyndham Vacation Ownership (WVO) asked students to create solutions that would reduce prospective purchasers’ pre-tour apprehension and increase interest in their expanding product offerings.  In addition to committing corporate and field executives’ time to overseeing the project, WVO also awarded scholarships to the students with the best ideas.

To better understand the product and process, WVO invited the students to their Bonnet Creek property and provided a tour of their corporate offices and contact center, allowing the students to “double jack” and observe actual customer interactions with WVO associates. Students worked in teams throughout the semester to identify viable solutions to the business challenge and presented their projects to Wyndham executives during their final class meeting.  On Thursday, Dec. 4, the winners and scholarship amounts were announced at an awards dinner celebration.

“It was a great experience to work with a real company and a real problem,” said Megan Hawk, a graduate student at Rosen College. “We go through all of these classes learning different aspects of the industry and being able to actually put some of the techniques to the test is a great way to analyze what we have learned.”

Sponsored by the UCF Timeshare Advisory Board, this project is a collaborative effort between the timeshare industry and Dr. Amy Gregory. Each year, companies are invited to participate by identifying a business issue or opportunity for Rosen College students to solve. This learning experience helps graduate students gain a deeper understanding of the timeshare industry through visits to the sponsoring company’s offices and locations, guest lectures and valuable feedback on their ideas before submitting their final proposals.

“I am grateful to have had the opportunity to be included in this project with UCF and Wyndham Vacation Ownership,” said John Wheeler, vice president at WVO. “The level of detail and research the students put into the development of their presentations and the passion with which they all delivered the material was truly remarkable. It is great for the students to learn more about the timeshare industry as the product truly changes lives.”

Congratulations to the following students for their successful participation in the Fall 2014 Masters Level Immersive Learning Project:

First Place: Ms. Darline Dondl, Ms. Ondine Feldman, Ms. Megan Hawk & Mr. Fabio Souza

Proposal: Integrated Pre-Arrival Communications Strategies

Second Place: Mr. David Santos, Mr. Francisco Branco Cercas, Ms. Joana Coelho & Ms. Marta Martins

Proposal: Building Trust & Happiness Through Engagement

Third Place: Mr. Christopher Garcia, Ms. Stefania Piccinelli & Ms. Natalie Starr

Proposal: An Interactive Mobile Campaign Using SnapTag Technology

Honorable Mention: Mr. Sebastian Muller & Mr. Miguel Fernandez

Proposal: Scavenger Hunt

Honorable Mention: Ms. Zane Abolina, Ms. Lindsey Lee & Ms. Catarina Morais

Proposal: Exclusive Events

For more information about graduate education at Rosen College, please visit hospitality.ucf.edu/graduateadmissions.