First Apprenticeship Graduates Earn College Credits, Advance in Company

Partnership with HACC-Harrisburg Yields Upward Mobility

High Hotels Ltd. recently celebrated the graduation of its first hospitality apprenticeship class. An event held January 15 at The S. Dale High Leadership Center in Lancaster recognized seven co-workers who each received 15 college credits and Hotel Associate-Journeyworker and ServSafe certificates.

A first-ever pilot created by High Hotels in partnership with the Harrisburg campus of Harrisburg Area Community College, the associate program launched in August 2018 and provided more than 4,000 hours of training. The pilot was funded in part by a $50,000 grant from the Pennsylvania Department of Labor & Industry.

“It was an honor for me from the moment I was selected,” said Ida Six, who works at the Courtyard by Marriott-Lancaster, one of 15 hotel properties owned and managed by High Hotels. “As a class, we are now more knowledgeable about the different departments, budgeting, menu planning, forecasting revenue and all aspects of hospitality.”

The apprenticeship merged on-the-job training with classroom instruction and guest service skills. As the program progressed, the seven High co-workers also earned job promotions or improved performance in their roles.

The High Hotels graduates included: Kayla Anspach, room attendant; Melissa Beible, sales coordinator, and, Melinda Burgard, lead room inspector, all of the Hampton Inn-Harrisburg West; Alice Keeley, lead room inspector, Homewood Suites-Harrisburg West; Ediht Lensbouer, lead room inspector, Residence Inn-Lancaster; Ida Six, lead room inspector, Courtyard by Marriott- Lancaster; and, Kylie Wolgamuth, front desk/sales, Hampton Inn-York.

“These are all co-workers who have proven to us that they have a high degree of passion for the hotel business,” said High Hotels president, Russ Urban. “Besides making High Hotels more competitive as an employer, the program has supported our retention goals by investing in people who want sustainable careers.”

“It’s been a great, exciting collaboration to work with an institution like HACC who’s willing to be innovative and try something different to help build an effective workforce,” said Urban. “Together we have established an outstanding partnership, and we look forward to building on this important work.”

PHOTO: Back row, left to right: Mike Shirk, CEO, the High companies; Kathy Prime, Chief Learning and Talent Acquisition Officer, the High companies; David Aungst, Vice President – Operations, High Hotels Ltd.; Laurel Rolle, Director of Talent Management and Organizational Development, the High companies; Darryl Gordon, Vice President - Human Resources, the High companies; and, Russ Urban, President, High Hotels. 

Front row, Apprenticeship Graduates from left to right: Alice Keeley; Kayla Anspach; Ida Six; Melinda Burgard; Kylie Wolgamuth; Melissa Beible; and, Ediht Lensbouer.

About High Hotels Ltd.

High Hotels Ltd. develops, acquires, owns, and operates award-winning select-service and extended-stay hotels in the mid-Atlantic and Northeast regions. The family-owned company’s properties are franchised through Hilton Hotels Corporation and Marriott International, Inc., and currently serve Harrisburg-West (3), Lancaster (3), Allentown-Bethlehem, Reading, Wilkes-Barre, and York, Pa.; Ewing (2), and Mt. Laurel, N.J.; and, Middletown, N.Y. (2). An affiliate of High Real Estate Group LLC based in Lancaster, Pa., High Hotels is recognized as a leader and has received many awards for excellent customer service. In 2019 High Hotels celebrated 30 years in business. 


Hotels Apprenticeship Graduation
January 31, 2020

Apprenticeship graduates with High leadership

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