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      Point of Pride

      Adjunct Professor in Hospitality Management Celebrates 50 Years at Widener

      Carlie Sisco, English and creative writing, ‘19

      shah with christmas tree

      Ramesh Shah

      Ramesh Shah, an adjunct professor in the Center for Experience Management in Tourism and Hospitality, is celebrating 50 years at Widener University.

      Over the last half-century, Ramesh Shah, an adjunct professor in the Center for Experience Management in Tourism and Hospitality, has taught over 12,000 students, 400 classes, and 20 subjects.

      "The classroom is my vitamin," Shah said. "Teaching keeps me young."

      Shah's career at Widener began when he applied to teach at Brandywine College, previously affiliated with Widener College, soon after it first opened in 1965.

      He began his teaching career as a business professor and chair of the business department – a job that allowed him to spend time in both India and America. Shah's interest in the hospitality industry was sparked after he became the owner of a hotel near the Brandywine campus and transitioned into teaching hospitality management.

      Shah has a PhD in economics and a LL.B law degree from Gujarat University in India, as well as an MBA in management from the University of Pennsylvania, an MS in finance from Temple University, and a MA in economics from the University of Delaware.

      Even after Brandywine College closed, he has remained at Widener's Main Campus and is currently an adjunct professor in the Center for Experience Management in Tourism and Hospitality.

      He enjoys teaching hospitality law, hospitality finance, and hospitality real estate development. In the spring, he will be an executive in residence, guest speaking for the spring session of hospitality law.

      While at Widener, Shah has seen extensive changes over the last 50 years. In particular, he has seen how technology has changed the classroom.

      Shah said Widener's campus and small class sizes offer a friendly atmosphere for students and make it a perfect place to form bonds with one another.

      Many alumni and students whom Shah has taught in the last 50 years still go to him for guidance. Shah and two of his former students from his first-year teaching at Brandywine talk on the phone every day.

      He has been able to watch his students grow and witness them applying his teaching to the real world. Shah, an avid traveler, has visited as many as 80 countries. Through his travels, he sees his students practice what he teaches.

      "There are former students that live in many of the places I visit. They take care of me," he said.

      Associate Professor Joy Dickerson has worked closely with Shah for many years and is currently collaborating with him on developing a revenue management certificate in hospitality management. She believes Shah is a crucial member of the Widener community for his dedication to the university, the hospitality program and the students.

      "Dr. Shah understands the unique characteristics of the hospitality industry, and remains current on business and societal issues," Dickerson said. "For over 50 years, he has touched many young lives with his warmth and wisdom, and the students respect him greatly for his knowledge and his fascinating business experiences."

      As for whether Shah plans to continue teaching, he said he will do so as long as he can.

      "Teaching gives me so much energy," he said.


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