The School of Hotel Administration named Kelly McGuire MMH ’01 PhD ’07 the recipient of the 2016 Cornell MMH Outstanding Alumnus of the Year Award earlier this month.
The Master of Management in Hospitality program dispenses this award based on criteria including academic performance, career success and notable engagement with the school beyond graduation, according to a University release.
Kate Walsh, interim dean and E.M. Statler Professor at SHA said that McGuire “is an exemplary graduate of the MMH program — an alumna who is making an imprint on the industry and passionate about helping our graduates launch their career paths.”
McGuire said that she was surprised, delighted, and honored to receive the award.
“The MMH at the Hotel School was such a meaningful experience for me, personally and professionally, it means a great deal to me to receive this award,” she said. “In fact, there are so many impressive alumni of this program, it’s humbling to be honored.”
McGuire said Cornell’s exposure to new concepts and ideas, the vast network of committed alumni, and learning from classmates helped her find her passion in revenue management. She attributes a great deal of her success to the connections she formed at the University as well.
After the MMH program, McGuire worked in hospitality technology for several years and returned to SHA for a PhD in Revenue Management. Since then, McGuire has worked in business analytics, revenue management, and price optimization analytics for SAS. Most recently, she works as the vice president of advanced Analytics for Wyndham Destination Network.
After completing her PhD, McGuire worked in hospitality technology for several years before returning to SHA to receive her PhD in Revenue Management.
In addition, McGuire has written two books on hospitality analytics — Hotel Pricing in a Social World and The Analytic Hospitality Executive, which was released last week.
McGuire advises current Cornellians to take advantage of the “non-academic” opportunities the University provides that can assist with professional development.
“Attend lectures, meet alumni from your field when they come to campus, get to know your peers and faculty; practice networking,” she said. “Exposure to all kinds of new people and new ideas will ultimately help you to determine what inspires you and what you want to dedicate your career to.”
She encourages students to keep an open mind in meeting new people, particularly in a small industry like hospitality.
“You never know who you will run into in the future — or who is connected to whom,” McGuire said. “Be sure to cultivate relationships, be respectful of everyone you encounter, and don’t burn any bridges.”
McGuire will officially be presented the award on Nov. 13, at the at the 15th annual Cornell MMH Reception in New York City, according to the press release.