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Durham hotel trio reintroduces Manager In Training Program to provide rapid career advancement opportunities

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The leadership development program is designed to help tourism and hospitality graduates catapult into management positions.

DURHAM, N.C. – Three hotel properties located on and near Duke University’s campus, Washington Duke Inn & Golf Club, JB Duke Hotel and The Lodge at Duke Medical Center, are reintroducing a highly successful Manager In Training (MIT) Program designed to assist in developing the next generation of hospitality management leaders. The 12-month rotational program allows participants to develop key foundational skills for full-service luxury hotel management through positions in each operational division, including Rooms and Food & Beverage.

Since its inception in 2002, the MIT Program has boasted a 95% success rate in elevating participants into management positions, with a majority remaining at the Inn, JB Duke Hotel or The Lodge.

“After pausing the program for the past two years, the timing is right to officially relaunch our celebrated MIT Program with a fresh take on the training and skills development offered to candidates,” said Deana Merrell, Area Director of Human Resources. “We have many successful team members that were part of the original program who are still with us today and hold leadership positions at our properties.”

Washington Duke Inn’s MIT Program is designed for those interested in hotel management positions who have completed a two-or four-year degree in Tourism/Hospitality Management.

“My MIT experience at the Washington Duke Inn & Golf Club has taken me farther than I could have imagined,” said Camryn Gutierrez, Assistant Guest Reception Manager at the Inn. “After meeting Deana at a career fair at East Carolina University, I was offered a position as an MIT, and I gained experience working in many positions throughout the Food & Beverage Department. The MIT Program taught me patience, precision and how to be more detail-oriented in my job.”

Participants selected for this program rotate through key hourly positions in operational departments, allowing MITs to experience and develop key foundational knowledge and skills for full-service luxury hotel management, as well as leadership development skills. Graduates are considered for leadership roles at one of the hotel properties once they complete the program.

The Washington Duke Inn, JB Duke Hotel and The Lodge offer a competitive benefits package for qualifying employees, including medical, life insurance, short- and long-term disability and a 401k program with a company match. The properties recently raised base pay for hourly employees to $15 per hour, with onsite perks including a free meal during each shift, free onsite parking, an employee referral bonus program, and more. A recent benefits addition is two more paid holidays, Martin Luther King Jr. Day and each employee’s birthday, bringing the total to eight paid holidays.

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