Mary MacAusland, CPA, PhD, is a senior lecturer at the School of Hotel Administration in the Cornell SC Johnson College of Business, where she teaches courses in financial and managerial accounting and financial statement analysis. Prior to joining Cornell, she was actively engaged in both academe and industry, serving in senior positions in several organizations. She was previously on the faculty at the University of New Hampshire and Franklin and Marshall College, and taught for several years at a small community college. MacAusland also worked in the life-care management and development field as a controller, and has held numerous positions with the United States Tennis Association (USTA), most recently as vice-chair of the audit committee. She served on the executive boards of USTA Middle States, and the Berks County Chapter of the American Red Cross for many years, and chaired several special events raising significant amounts for local charities. MacAusland was also a longtime member of the investment committee for the Berks County Community Foundation, where she helped to establish investment guidelines and monitor performance for $50 million in managed assets, and was integral in establishing a permanent fund with the foundation to provide grants for tennis programs for at-risk youth.
The Advanced Hospitality Management Capstone, part of the Cornell Professional Development Program, is the on-campus component that results in the completion of your advanced certificate. It takes place at the Cornell University campus in Ithaca, NY, at the renowned School of Hotel Administration.
Over four intensive days, you will tackle management challenges and collaborate with a network of peers to expand the foundation of your hospitality knowledge.
Days 1 and 2: Hospitality Financial Management: Operations Decision Making
In this on-campus faculty-led intensive, you'll explore financial statement analysis tools to increase profitability within your operations. You'll practice techniques to make more strategic operational decisions about costs, volume, profit, and pricing, as well as how to best manage operating and capital budgets. This session will provide you with a background in financial accounting and financial statement analysis, and you'll use tools to analyze cash flows, results of operations, and financial position. Managerial accounting tools will also be explained, examined, and applied as they relate to the decision-making process within your hospitality organization. You'll engage with your peers in case studies and practical problem sets using common terminology employed by owners and operators.
Days 3 and 4: Strategic Decision Making for Hotel Operations
Using team decision making as the primary engine, you'll enhance the skills needed to make sound tactical and strategic decisions to improve hotel performance. You'll practice skills that lead to successful planning and implementation of both short-term and long-term strategic initiatives. This two-day intensive session leverages a simulation focusing on strategic decision making and practical exercises. You'll divide your time among working in the simulation, consulting the collateral materials, performing analyses, and engaging in group discussion and decision making. The activities will lead you to a broader understanding of complex market factors in addition to the micro-markets in which you operate. You'll leave having gained practical experience with the key competitive elements that will drive your success as a hospitality manager.
- Apply critical financial and operating ratios
- Utilize tools for analyzing the balance sheet, income statement, and cash flow statement
- Perform cost-volume-profit analysis as it relates to strategic operational decisions
- Explore use of operational and capital budgeting
- Analyze how micro- and macro-market factors affect sales and profitability
- Practice data analysis skills to inform better decision making
- Explore techniques that build long-term operational success and profitability
Alex Susskind is a Professor of Food and Beverage Management and is currently serving as the Associate Dean for Academic Affairs. Professor Susskind earned his Ph.D. in Communication from Michigan State University with a specialization in organizational communication and his MBA with a concentration in personnel and human relations. Alex earned his undergraduate degree at Purdue University in Restaurant, Hotel, and Institutional Management and is also a trained chef with a degree in Culinary Arts from The Culinary Institute of America in Hyde Park, New York. Prior to starting his career in academia, Alex was a chef and restaurant operator for both independent and multi-unit restaurant companies in the Northeastern and Southeastern United States.
Dave Roberts retired from Marriott in 2019, after 23 years with the company. Most recently, he was the Senior Vice President of Revenue Strategy and Solutions; in this role, he was responsible for revenue management strategy and execution for around 7,000 hotels worldwide. He also led revenue analytics, providing top-line analysis for the company; as well as sales systems, providing strategy, development, and deployment of technology to manage meeting and event business. Prior to this role, he led Consumer Insights, providing consumer research and analytics for regional and corporate stakeholders. Mr. Roberts has also been Regional Vice President of Market Strategy for Marriott’s Eastern Region, as well as Vice President of Global Pricing, in addition to several other roles in the company.
Prior to Marriott, Mr. Roberts was a manager in the Finance Department at American Airlines, working on airplane purchases and route economics. He was also a technical consultant on missile defense for the U.S. Department of Defense, as part of the “Star Wars” initiative. Mr. Roberts has a B.S. and an M.S. in Operations Research from Cornell University, as well as an MBA with majors in Finance and Economics from Northwestern’s Kellogg School. He holds a U.S. patent on a software product (a “data matching” algorithm) and has published several academic papers on such topics as forecasting, options pricing, and customer choice modeling. Mr. Roberts was on IBM’s Business Analytics Advisory Board for six years and on Cornell’s Center for Hospitality Research Advisory Board for five years. He has been a frequent speaker at industry events as well as several top universities. In his spare time, Mr. Roberts enjoys martial arts and astronomy.
Who Should Enroll
- Hospitality professionals with at least two years of experience