- publication: 4 July 2016
American Hotel & Lodging Association Educational Institute and Stenden HMS AIHR
It is not commonly known that the biggest hospitality educator in the world is the American Hotel & Lodging Association Educational Institute (AHLEI). Established in 1953, the American Hotel & Lodging Educational Institute (AHLEI) is a non-profit member of the American Hotel & Lodging Association (AH&LA). AHLEI strives to be a quality source for delivering hospitality education, training and professional certification that serves the needs of hospitality schools and industries worldwide. AHLEI provides materials for all levels of hospitality personnel via: online learning, distance learning courses, videos, seminars, textbooks, and study guides. AHLEI has a presence around the world through 74 licensed affiliates in 45 different countries. The American Hotel & Lodging Educational Institute also has an official office located in India, and holds exclusive Hospitality Education Program (HEP) license agreements in numerous countries connecting AHLEI's research and expertise to hospitality operations throughout Europe, Asia, the Middle East, Africa, and Latin America. The American Hotel & Lodging Educational Institute is recognized by important associations for higher hospitality education such as the International Council on Hotel, Restaurant, and Institutional Education (ICHRIE), the European Council on Hotel, Restaurant & Institutional Education (EuroCHRIE), the Asia-Pacific Council on Hotel, Restaurant, and Institutional Education (APacCHRIE) and the International Centre of Excellence in Tourism and Hospitality Education (THE-ICE).
Professional certification from the American Hotel & Lodging Educational Institute internationally is considered to be a valuable source of education for people working in the hospitality industry who cannot leave their posts to participate in regular full-time taught programmes. AHLEI certifies and validates competencies in conjunction with academia and industry experts for more than 20 positions in the hospitality industry; designations from front-line to general manager, including the Certified Hotel Administrator (CHA). For educators in hospitality management there is the Certified Hospitality Educator (CHE) certification. The Certified Hospitality Educator (CHE) programme offers a professional development opportunity designed for postsecondary hospitality educators around the world. The aim of the CHE programme is to assist hospitality educators in using effective instructional methods that can energize teaching and help students to strengthen their critical thinking and motivation to learn. For teachers, lecturers and instructors in hospitality education engaging in the CHE programme is an effective manner to receive recognition for their teaching abilities from an internationally well-known organisation such as the American Hotel & Lodging Educational Institute. The CHE programme can be followed by educators at every level of hospitality programme and in any phase of their career; starting teachers who need to build their confidence, experienced professors looking for ways to revitalize their teaching, industry professionals moving into instructor positions and lecturers at a college or university. Once certified, designees are automatically enrolled in the CHE Recertification Program, which recognizes and rewards continuing efforts toward hospitality career growth. A portfolio to help track professional-development activities needs to be provided for validation by the American Hotel & Lodging Educational Institute every five years. The Certification Commission will recertify those who qualify based on their accomplishments. A new certificate is awarded at the time of each recertification.
This year, Stenden HMS AIHR´s UAS Professor, Dr. Sjoerd Gehrels received his 4th CHE recertification (2001 – 2021) based on a portfolio of connecting to the hospitality industry, hospitality research delivered, hospitality conferences attended and education & training taken. It turned out surprisingly that Sjoerd currently is the only Dutch national, one out of 9 in Europe and one out of 92 in the world wo hold a fourth time renewed Certified Hospitality Educator designation (3.518 active CHEs worldwide). The occasion of awarding the 20-years CHE recognition to Sjoerd was celebrated with Ed Kastli - AHLEI Vice President, Brenda Moons - Senior VP of Sales and Joseph A. McInerney - Emeritus President & CEO, American Hotel & Lodging Association in Berlin earlier this year.