Precious G. Ndebele, a senior majoring in Hospitality Management, was recently honored by Florida Gov. Rick Scott. Ndebele received an Iris D. Larson Award at the 44th Annual Florida Governor’s Conference on Tourism at the Westin Diplomat Resort & Spa in Hollywood.
Created by Bob and Iris Larson, owners of a small motel in Kissimmee, the Iris D. Larson Awards were created to recognize hospitality/tourism industry professionals and students who exemplify the qualities of selfless spirit of service and leadership in their work experience.
“It was like a dream come true,” Ndebele said. “The hotel was beautiful, and I wanted to stay for the week.” In addition to meeting Gov. Scott, she also met Carol B. Dover, the president and CEO of the Florida Restaurant and Lodging Association.
Originally from Zimbabwe, Ndebele is the current president of the UCF Student Chapter of the National Society of Minorities in Hospitality (NSMH). She believes service excellence is much more than meeting the customer’s expectations. “It is the provision of unforgettable, consistent and unsurpassed service,” Ndebele shares.
Ndebele works as a director of first impressions at Rosen Shingle Creek, a coordinating position in the Sales & Marketing department. Ndebele’s supervisor, Vice President of Sales & Marketing for Rosen Hotels & Resorts Convention Hotels Leslie Menichini, gave both Ndebele and Office Manager Melissa Lima the day off to make the journey to South Florida.
Menichini shares, “Precious will rise high amongst her peers within the hospitality community due to her warm personality, intense loyalty and passionate hunger to learn. She is an example of service and hospitality both with the internal and external customer.”
Harris Rosen, COO of Rosen Hotels & Resorts has shared about Ndebele, “There is no doubt in my mind that Precious will one day be one of our more dynamic leaders in the hospitality industry. No doubt, she will come out a star among many and will make us all very proud.”