Will Hehemann | School of Agriculture, Fisheries and Human Sciences
Trenay Hayes, a junior majoring in hospitality and tourism management at the University of Arkansas at Pine Bluff (UAPB) Department of Human Sciences, was recently awarded a $1,500 scholarship by the National Society of Minorities in Hospitality (NSMH). The scholarship was funded by the Four Seasons Hotel and will help cover her tuition, fees, books and supplies this semester.
Dr. Suzzette Goldmon, assistant professor of hospitality and tourism at UAPB, said Hayes is a conscientious student, full of the energy necessary to be successful in the hospitality industry.
“Trenay accepts and excels at any opportunity presented to her, even during the pandemic,” she said. “She is a good listener, pays attention to details and is dependable. As a professor, there is a great sense of fulfillment when a student’s eyes light up, they become fully engaged and the adrenalin kicks in while completing a complicated task. My satisfaction as an educator is motivated by students like Trenay Hayes.”
Hayes says she has loved to cook since she was a child and that pursuing an education in hospitality seemed only natural to her.
“Ever since I was young, people have always told me that I’m a people person,” she said. “I want to be the reason someone smiles while eating a meal. I want to be the reason someone says, ‘I loved it here – I’d like to come back,’ when leaving a hotel.”
After she graduates, Hayes hopes to own a restaurant or work in a managerial position at a restaurant chain. She currently enjoys networking with members of the hospitality industry and familiarizing herself with the business side of the culinary industry.
“Everybody has a calling, and this is mine,” she said. “Being in the food service industry gives me the rare opportunity to travel a bit and bring people together with something as simple as food.”
She recommends that other UAPB students – not only those who study human sciences – consider enrolling in hospitality and tourism management courses at the university.
“Students who want to see more of the world and learn about more cultures should definitely consider joining a few classes,” she said. “There is always a warm welcoming feeling, and I think everybody needs that. You may take a class not knowing anything about the hospitality industry and find out that’s your true calling. The hospitality industry is vast, so opportunities are everywhere.”
Outside of her academic studies, Hayes is a member of the Marching Musical Machine of the Mid-South (M4).
Dr. Bruce McGowan, interim dean/director of the UAPB School of Agriculture, Fisheries and Human Sciences, said the School is proud of Hayes and her most recent accomplishment.
“I hope this scholarship keeps Trenay grounded in the Department of Human Sciences and prepares her for a fulfilling career in the hospitality and tourism profession,” he said.
The University of Arkansas at Pine Bluff offers all its Extension and Research programs and services without regard to race, color, sex, gender identity, sexual orientation, national origin, religion, age, disability, marital or veteran status, genetic information, or any other legally protected status, and is an Affirmative Action/Equal Opportunity Employer.