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Ajai V. Ammachathram HRTM Program Director, Associate Professor, Food and Beverage Extension Specialist, and Global Engagement Coordinator

Ph.D., Educational Leadership, Eastern Michigan University
M.S., Hospitality Management, Eastern Michigan University
B.S., Hospitality Administration, Southern New Hampshire University
B.Sc., Hotel and Catering Management, University of Madras

Dr. Ammachathram is a hospitality leader and educator who has been associated with hospitality management for over 25 years. He is a Certified Hospitality Educator (CHE) from the American Hotel and Lodging Association Educational Institute, and currently serves as Vice-President on the board of the Central Federation of the International Council of Hotel, Restaurant, and Institutional Education (ICHRIE).

    Teaching Activities -70% Apportionment

    Fall 2023

    • HRTM 374 Guest Services Management
    • HRTM 479 Senior Seminar in Hospitality Management

    Spring 2024

    • HRTM 377 Hospitality Franchising Management
    • HRTM 479 Senior Seminar in Hospitality Management
    • HRTM 481 Legal Environment in Hospitality Management
    Extension Activities -25% Apportionment

    Extension and outreach programs with focus on:

    • Improving Nebraska foodservice professionals' knowledge of best practices and to support them in providing safe food and exceptional service while maintaining high industry standards.
    • Increasing culinary and management skills among young minds for successful careers in the restaurant and foodservice industry through established curriculum development.
    • Enhancing the Public-school foodservice program to provide balanced dietary intake, promote higher satisfaction, and improve health among children through improving managers' serving practices.
    Notable Works

    "Why Tipping is an American Custom" -CNBC Network interview, 2021

    "Why Does Alcohol Cost So Much When You Fly?"  -Mel Magazine, 2021

    "Five Things with Ajai Ammachathram"  -UNL Podcast, 2020

    "Is Dining Out Done? A Nebraska Industry Expert Discusses"  -BTN LIVEBIG, 2020

    "Hospitality Program Looks Towards Future Amid Uncertainty in Industry (COVID-19)  -Nebraska Today, 2020

    "Surviving the Storm"  -Food Quality and Safety Magazine, 2019

    "Foodservice Operations Management Checklist"  -Nebraska Extension/UNL Food, 2019

    "Be a Guide on the Side"  -Hospitality Quarterly, Nebraska Restaurant Association, 2019

    "Latest Food and Beverage Trends in the Hotel Industry" -University of Madras, India, 2018

    "Spice Myth-busters" -Nebraska State Fair demonstration, 2017-2019

    Areas of Expertise
    • Food and Beverage Management
    • Small Business and Entrepreneurship Development
    • Minority and New Entrepreneurship Development
    • Retail and Franchising Management
    • Nutrition programs within Nebraska Public Education
    • Customer Service Management
    • Pro-Start Curriculum
    • Global Hospitality Education
    • Hospitality Curriculum Development
    • Higher Education Administration

    Professional Highlights

    Honors and Recognition
    2021: College Distinguished Faculty Award2021: UNL Parents Association Teaching Award2020-2023: Vice President, Central Federation Council on Hotel, Restaurant, and Institutional Education2020: CEHS Outstanding Faculty Award2020: IANR Dinsdale Family Faculty Award2020: UNL Parents Association Teaching Award2019: UNL Parents Association Teaching Award2018-2020 Director of Education, Central Federation Council on Hotel, Restaurant, and Institutional Education2018: UNL Parents Association Teaching Award2005-2025: Certified Hospital Educator, American Hotel and Lodging Association Educational Institute
    Foodservice business development in rural communitiesFood and beverage management in the airline industryNon-profit foodservice managementRestaurant management from luxury resorts (The Ritz Carlton)Retail industries and franchising operationsHealthcare patients
    International Council on Hotel, Restaurant, and Institutional EducationAmerican Hotel & Lodging Educational InstituteNational Restaurant AssociationNebraska Craft Brewers GuildResearch Chefs of AmericaComparative and International Education SocietyPhi Delta Kappa International