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Hospitality Management students at Mid-State earn critical industry credentials

Metro Wire Staff

Several Mid-State Technical College Hospitality Management students recently earned industry-recognized certifications on the path to their associate degree.

The certifications are part of the National Restaurant Association ManageFirst program, which allows program participants to receive industry-respected training that prepares them to confidently lead in the high-demand hospitality industry.

The recipients and their earned certificates are:

  • Jaci Brandl, Almond: ManageFirst Certification in Hospitality Marketing
  • Kevin Kruger, Wisconsin Rapids: ManageFirst Certification in Purchasing and ServSafe Food Protection Manager Certification
  • Kaitlin Ladwig, Stevens Point: ManageFirst Certification in Hospitality Marketing and ServSafe Food Protection Manager Certification
  • Stephanie Wulff, Marshfield: ManageFirst Certification in Purchasing

“At first, working in the restaurant industry was a means to get by as a teenager,” said Ladwig, who works as an assistant manager at the Amber Grill/Holiday Inn Convention Center in Stevens Point. “Through these classes and the support I’ve received from my parents and my mentor/teacher Paul Kennedy, I’ve learned that this is really something I’m good at. Even though I’m not sure what my end goal is yet, I am seeing opportunities, now more than ever, and couldn’t be more excited to continue my career in the field.”

The ManageFirst program teaches practical competencies needed to face real-world challenges in the industry, including interpersonal communication, ethics, accounting skills, and more. Upon completing the training and successfully passing the certification exams and providing documented industry experience to the National Restaurant Association the students earn the ManageFirst Professional Credential (MFP).

“Earning these certificates this semester is a great first step for the students in our Hospitality Management program as they continue on the path towards earning their nationally recognized ManageFirst Professional certification,” said Mid-State Hospitality Management Instructor Paul Kennedy. “This industry certification will help our students gain a competitive advantage in the job market, as it demonstrates proven academic knowledge and ability to perform these skills, which are so valued in the field. I am extremely proud of each of them for the accomplishment.”

The ManageFirst (MFP) credential recognizes students as having the academic and practical knowledge they need to succeed in the restaurant, foodservice, and hospitality industries. To earn the MFP credential, students must pass four Core Credential exams and one Elective exam (all of which are offered as part of the Mid-State Technical College Hospitality Management program) as well as provide documentation for 800 hours of unpaid or paid industry work experience (some of which can be earned through the Mid-State’s Hospitality Management program internship courses).

Learn more about Mid-State’s Hospitality Management program and new Culinary Arts program at mstc.edu/programs.