FEATURE: Hospitality and Volleyball Create Success for Women's Volleyball Elizabeth Hamilton

FEATURE: Hospitality and Volleyball Create Success for Women's Volleyball Elizabeth Hamilton

By: Emily Musella/Johnson & Wales Staff Writer

The Johnson & Wales women's volleyball team over the past four years carries an astounding record of 117 wins and seven losses to date, and are looking to add more wins to its impressive resume. Involved heavily with the success of the women's volleyball team is senior outside hitter Elizabeth Hamilton.

Besides her contributions to the team, Hamilton is distinguishing herself as a hospitality major, taking part in a year-long hospitality project her junior year involving diversity and training with the Marriott. 

"To be involved with a research group outside of school that focuses on my major, what's trending in the hospitality industry and how the process works, was simply amazing," she says. As Hamilton and her research group presented their findings at the Schneider Auditorium in front of the entire College of Hospitality Management, a sense of accomplishment and realism came to light for her. 

When asked about how sports and the hospitality field complement one another, Hamilton shares, "I think there's a leadership component with both the hospitality field and sports along with a sense of team commitment. Both fields need these tools to succeed whether it be on the court or behind the desk". 

The inspiration for finding a career in hospitality came from watching her dad in hotel-management and traveling from hotel to hotel to learn more about the industry and how to make it more successful for everyone. Hamilton found herself at JWU through volleyball, but networking and understanding the importance of community are two impactful lessons she has garnered from her time here. 

Regarding the success of the volleyball team and what it has done for the university as a whole, Hamilton says, "The success definitely raises the level that the school is competing at, and brings positive attention to the university. We are honored to represent JWU in this way." She shares that her team has made a point of attending other team's games more often the past couple of years to help grow a community atmosphere, and hopes that it will spread to the greater campus community as a whole.

As Hamilton graduates in November with a degree in hospitality, her mindset shifts from the excitement of opening those doors at her first class or volleyball practice at JWU, to now opening new doors to her future career. But Hamilton plans on continuing to support her JWU volleyball family and school community. "I think I'll always be pretty involved in volleyball, whether it be going to games or watching teams online compete, I'll always support JWU sports." 

The No.18 Johnson & Wales women's volleyball program is back in action Friday and Saturday with a tough road test at the Wesleyan Invitational in Middletown, Connecticut, squaring off against Trinity at 4 p.m., October 18 and No. 14 Juniata College at 11 a.m., October 19.