October 23, 2001

Hotel School Partnership to End This Year

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Cornell University’s five-year relationship with the Australian International Hotel School will soon end as the partnership between the two institutions is set to expire at the end of the year.

“The purpose of this partnership was to assist the Australian school in establishing a hotel school to serve Australia,” said Thomas P. Cullen, Associate Dean for Industry and International Affairs.

“We provided all the necessary resources to help them get established,” added Cullen.

As a part of the partnership between the two institutions, Cornell also agreed to endorse the Australian school degree by allowing its logo to be displayed on the degree.

“That doesn’t make it a Cornell degree, the degree is still from the Australian school itself,” said Cullen.

Cornell will continue to endorse the degrees of those students who were enrolled at the Australian Hotel School before September of this year.

The International Hotel School, located in the Australian capital of Canberra, was established under the Australian Capital Territory Labor Party government in 1995.

The state-funded institution was founded to provide course offerings in the hospitality industry and confers bachelor’s degrees in Hotel Management.

Not everything, however, has gone so well for the International Hotel School.

The last annual report revealed losses totaling nearly $50 million. The International Hotel School, which competes with private industry, has suffered from global economic slowdown and low student enrollment.

The school, beginning with only two students, increased its enrollment to 200; however, those numbers have recently decreased by nearly 19 percent.

“This inability to attract sufficient additional students to increase growth also puts at risk the capacity to maintain the current level of students,” the annual report said.

“There was also a considerable slowdown in activity in Canberra that had an effect on the hotel revenue,” said Michael Conlin, Dean of the Australian International Hotel School, to The Canberra Times.

The Australian government has established a committee to determine what changes will be necessary to stabilize the institution and wean it from government assistance.

“It is clear that considerable changes will be necessary to ensure long-term viability with no future requirement for direct government support,” added the report.

In addition to the Australian organization, Cornell has similar partnerships with other international institutions. One such institution is ESSEC–a graduate level program in Paris that is widely known as the leading business school in France.

“We provide multiple resources, such as exchanging technical assistance, partnering in research, as well as providing a strong Cornell University faculty presence in their classrooms,” said Cullen.

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