This profile is part of a series celebrating Career and Technical Education (CTE) Month at St. Petersburg College. Be sure to check out the full story to read more about the experiences of SPC students. To explore all of our degrees and credentials, visit spcollege.edu/degrees.
When CatZe Worrell, 27, stepped off the Auto Train in Orlando on a sweltering July day in 2018, she had her boyfriend, her car and a plan to attend St. Petersburg College. After a week in a hotel, the two settled into their own place and Worrell began the Hospitality and Tourism Management program at SPC.
“I chose SPC because I wanted a school that was financially attainable, highly rated and offering a Hospitality Management program,” Worrell said. “And we were looking for a place to live that offered convenience to both of our schools. Luckily, SPC offered multiple locations and a fully online program to accommodate my needs.”
Worrell, who grew up in her family’s restaurant on Virginia Beach’s oceanfront, said she always had a love for the restaurant business, and though it was exciting start college after putting it off for a few years, Worrell faced bouts of homesickness.
“The first six months were the most difficult in being away from my family and friends,” she said. “But I found comfort and distraction in my coursework as well as utilizing the campus.”
Worrell is now deciding where to complete her internship, and she expects to graduate after the Summer 2021 term. In the course of her studies, she has already earned Rooms Division Specialist and Rooms Division Operations certificates and will earn four more by the time she graduates. With the industry bouncing back after taking a hard hit from the pandemic, Worrell believes that, together with her internship and work experience, she has several interesting opportunities open to her.
“I would like to land a management position at a hotel or resort that prioritizes their environmental impact,” she said. “My long-term dream is to open my own “green” bed and breakfast. Although, I do stay open to the likelihood of my plans changing along the way.”
Worrell said SPC’s Hospitality program has shown her that she has both the perseverance and the ability to accomplish her goals.
“As we all can relate, it has been challenging to stay focused and motivated over the last several months, and my professors at SPC have been key in this journey. Not only has SPC provided my education, but it also introduced me to a network of jobs, industry professionals, and friends along the way.”