The graduation day is a very special occasion. It is special not only for the graduates whose success the ceremony celebrates, but is also special for all those who contributed to their success - parents, professors, administrators and friends. The occasion is, a way to express gratitude to all!
The Apeejay Institute of Hospitality located at CBD Belapur shares its premises with The Park Navi Mumbai. It is an initiative of the Apeejay Surrendra Park Hotels Ltd. that operates its collection of Luxury Boutique hotels in India. The institute offers a 3 years Bachelor’s Degree programme in Hospitality Studies (BSc-HS)affiliated to the University of Mumbai & YCMO University and is recognized by the University Grants Commission. AIH is also the center for learning of Apeejay Surrendra Park Hotels. The group's Management Training Programme, Professional Development Programmes as well as consultancy projects for the hospitality industry are some of its additional core activities. Not only academics but extra curricular activities are also given equal impetus. Students have the advantage of getting hands-on operational training at The Park, Navi Mumbai, doing their internship from any of the Park properties or associated organizations and take up careers with the Park Hotels as well as other hotels.
The 6th batch graduated from the portals of the AIH (Apeejay Institute of Hospitality ) on 22nd March 2015 in a spectacular ceremony held at The Park Navi Mumbai. Ms. Priya Paul, Chairperson, Apeejay Surrendra Park Hotels Ltd. came from Delhi to be a part of the ceremony. Dr. Sumit Chowdhury renowned business leader, entrepreneur best-selling author and motivational speaker who has delivered several TEDx lectures was the Guest of Honour, Dr. (Mrs.) Harsha Mehta, Local Managing Committee member and Principal of SIES College, Sion, Mumbai was one of the dignitaries on the dais. Also present was Mr. Ravi Rawat, Director Operations, The Park, Navi Mumbai.
The special invitees were parents of final year students, AIH alumni, Principals of Hotel Management Colleges in Navi Mumbai & Mumbai, Media, Hotel HR and Training Managers (Recruiters), Key members from Apeejay House, The Park Navi Mumbai HODs and the Local Management Committee members.
The function that started at 10.30 am went on for about 1.5 hours. It commenced with the Graduation March lead by Ms. Paul, Dr. Chowdhury and Dr. (Mrs.) Harsha Mehta in full academic regalia. Laxmi Todiwan, was the Master of Ceremony. She welcomed the guests and thanked everyone present for joining AIH on its special day in celebrating the graduates. She also expressed her appreciation to all those who had supported them – professors, administrators, parents, grandparents, siblings, relatives and close friends.
Principal Mr. GM Bhuvan presented the annual report; Final year student representative Ms. Parkhi Batra, shared experiences of her journey at AIH and it was received with cheer and applause. Then Ms. Priya Paul, addressed the audience. Apart from addressing the audience, she shared with the graduating batch some inspiring incidents of her own journey as an industry professional. In her address to the students she emphasized on creating a balance between fun and learning, innovation and willingness to explore new things. She said that these were the very values she carried in her own life. The genesis of what was done at AIH and how the programme started was to really bring- in this fact in the learning environment.
She added, “The University curriculum is followed but there’s a lot of learning that happens outside the classrooms things that happened in the industry, things that touched the industry. Innovate things – that’s how we conduct our business. It reflects in the learning at the institute too. Hospitality is all about life skills, living and Life. Be open to new ideas, thoughts and differentiation in things. We have come a long way in the last 8 years and a lot more is planned at AIH in terms of infrastructure and new courses”.
She hoped that more people stayed in the industry for long. She was happy to see the alumni reach noteworthy positions in their careers. She appreciated the fact that the foundation that was created at AIH led to good grounding for life.
Guest of honour for the function Dr. Sumit Chowdhury, then addressed the audience. He lived upto his reputation of a fantastic speaker. His address to the graduating batch was not only an opener for them but also carried specs of humour. He kept the audience mesmerized and keenly listening to him for the next 20 minutes.
It was time then to confer the Jit Paul Gold Medal and the Surrendra Paul Gold Medal instituted in memory of the founders Mr. Jit Paul and Mr. Surrendra Paul. Ms. Priya Paul awarded the 15 gms 24 carat real gold medals to the winners.
Jit Paul Gold medal awarded to the graduating student who is an all rounder with the best attitude and values. The winner of this award was Ms. Priyanka Mandal. The Surrendra Paul Gold medal awarded to the graduating student for academic excellence, and the proud winner was Mr. Samuel Nair.
The programme concluded with the national anthem sung by all present. The faculty and students then joined the guests for some sumptuous lunch, at The Park, Navi Mumbai. The Hotel kitchen team laid an elaborate buffet, showcasing the best from their menu.