JWU Students Lend Their Skills to United Way of Miami-Dade

Business, Culinary and Hospitality Students to contribute 2,500 hours of service at VeritageMiami, April 17-20

North Miami – April 10, 2013 – In a collaboration that spans more than a decade, Johnson & Wales University’s North Miami Campus and United Way of Miami-Dade will once again join forces for VeritageMiami, the United Way’s annual wine and food festival.

Now in its 18th year, VeritageMiami (formerly the United Way Miami Wine and Food Festival) brings together a who’s who of more than 3,000 wine, beer, spirits, and food lovers from all across South Florida. The festival will take place April 17 thru 20 at four different venues: Wynwood Walls, Village of Merrick Park, JW Marriot Marquis Miami, and Orion Jet Center. A full list of events may be found at www.veritagemiami.com.

In previous years VeritageMiami has been a training ground for approximately 40 JWU culinary and hospitality students looking to gain experience and contribute their time and talents during the interactive dinner. This year, an anticipated 300 students from all three of JWU’s colleges (business, culinary arts and hospitality) will join forces to support all four days of the event, contributing an anticipated 2,500 hours of community service.

Volunteer responsibilities will be based on a student’s major. For instance, business students will assist with the coordination of the silent auction, culinary arts students will work with the featured chefs who are presenting food to guests, and sports/entertainment/event management students will assist with the set up and logistics at each site. In some cases, JWU hospitality courses will be held on site at VeritageMiami as students work the event as an assignment that’s built into the class.

The university’s involvement with United Way has also expanded this year to include full-time, for credit internships. Since November, a total of four business and hospitality students have worked at United Way offices to plan and execute the series of VeritageMiami events.

“Johnson & Wales University’s support of VeritageMiami is extraordinary,” said Harve A. Mogul, president and CEO, United Way of Miami-Dade. “The students’ support helps us keep labor costs down. This ultimately translates into more dollars that the United Way of Miami-Dade can use to impact the South Florida community. At the same time, our guests are going to have the opportunity to witness the caliber of young adults that Johnson & Wales University is preparing to enter the workforce, and they are going to be impressed.”

VeritageMiami is just one example of JWU’s efforts to contribute to the community. During the 2011–2012 academic year, North Miami Campus students performed 33,895 hours of community service, earning the campus a spot on the President’s Community Service Honor Roll. The honor role is the highest federal recognition institutions of higher education can receive for supporting community service and service-learning.

“Community service has always been an integral part of the JWU curriculum,” said Ismare Monreal, JWU dean of students. “We are delighted to collaborate with United Way of Miami-Dade to teach our students the importance of community building and service learning.”

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