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For Immediate Release:
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Gretchen Johnson


Office of Public Relations
Fairleigh Dickinson University
1000 River Road
Mailstop H-DH3-15
Teaneck, NJ 07666
(201) 692-7032


285 Madison Avenue
Mailstop M-MS0-01
Madison, NJ 07940
(973) 443-8661

New Center Opens

New Center for Service Professionals Opens at Fairleigh Dickinson University

Teaneck, NJ (March 9 2001) — When dining out, 80 percent of the customers believe the quality of the service is unacceptable. This Zagat data focuses on a key element in the hospitality industry – the need for properly trained service people.

In response to this need, the Center for Service Professionals has been created by Fairleigh Dickinson University’s School of Hotel, Restaurant and Tourism Management. The New Jersey Restaurant Association and The Federation of Dining Room Professionals are partners in the new Center.

The Director of the Center is FDU faculty member John Avella, who brings more than 30 years of hospitality and restaurant experience to this new position. He is a nationally recognized training and development executive in the hospitality industry. For two years, Avella served as president of the Council of Hotel and Restaurant Trainers.

Before joining the faculty at FDU, Avella held the position of vice president at the Rainbow Room, Rockefeller Center, and at Windows on the World, World Trade Center, in New York City, and at Marriott, where he was vice president for human resources. He directed the operations of the Ryland Inn, Whitehouse, NJ, rated by Gourmet magazine as one of America’s best restaurants.

Working with Avella will be Bernard Martinage, the former Lecturing Maitre D’ instructor of the Culinary Institute of America’s Restaurant Escoffier — the first student-staffed restaurant in America to receive a five-star rating. Martinage holds a degree in Culinary Arts/Table Service from the culinary school of Semur en Auxois, Burgundy, France. A founder of the Federation of Dining Room Professionals, he has been active in the industry since 1977.

Certification courses at the Center train and develop service professionals, service trainers and dining-room managers. Each course consists of 24 hours of classroom time with assignments outside the classroom. All programs end with a certification process of testing and demonstration. Individuals as well as groups are welcome in this program.

"We developed the Center and this particular set of courses," said Avella, "with the guidance of service professionals and an advisory board of hospitality service experts. Our programs can be customized and we are able to deliver them at locations convenient to the employers, in addition to having classes on FDU campuses. The Center is able to conduct focused service training in a pre-opening or a new opening setting.

"There will be restaurants, hotels and country clubs using this Center as a group training facility for their entire staff," said Avella. "but this Center also serves the individual. In our industry, many people work for minimum wage. If they had solid training and certification, they would be able to significantly increase their income by working as a service professional in an upscale restaurant or dining facility."

For further information or a brochure, call 201.692.7266.

Copyright © 2001, Fairleigh Dickinson University. All rights reserved.
This release authored with FDU Pagetoaster.