Thirty Years of Hospitality at Lexington College

Lexington College in Chicago celebrates its 30th anniversary by inaugurating a new program that will expand its hospitality training to the area of Health Care and Wellness.

For 30 years now Lexington has provided young women from all over the United States with individual attention in academic growth, career planning and personal development.

Lexington College's mission—to educate the whole woman while focusing on her professional development of knowledge and skill for a career in the hospitality industry— has stayed firm as the college has grown and developed with the role of women in the U.S. over the past 30 years. Today, as corporations and society realize the great value that women bring to the professions, Lexington’s holistic and rich educational experience is an incredibly valuable asset for young women,” said Lexington's President, Susan Mangels.

Lexington Institute was founded in 1977 as corporate apostolate of Opus Dei to provide hospitality training for women. Its founders designed a program that would combine professional training and academic preparation with Christian values. For 30 years now Lexington has provided young women from all over the United States with individual attention in academic growth, career planning and personal development.

Over those thirty years, Lexington has grown into a four-year, accredited college and is the only all-women’s hospitality management college in the United States. The college prepares women for professional careers in the hospitality industry, offering programs in Hotel/Restaurant Management, Culinary Arts, Event Planning, and Health Care & Wellness that culminate in Bachelor’s and Associate’s degrees. The hospitality industry is the largest, fastest growing industry in the world. In fact, more people work in the hospitality industry than any other retail profession in the United States.

“Hospitality is all about people,” says Itezelle Arienza, class of 2010. “In order to be the best manager I can, I have to be the best person I can be. Lexington has helped me to set goals in all areas of my life—for my career, my personal life and even my spiritual life. I looked at several colleges before choosing Lexington. I love my job at the Marriott, I have great friends and I have grown in my faith. I know I made the right choice!”

Adding to the festivities of its 30th anniversary, Lexington College recently received a major gift to expand its bachelors degree program and launch a Health Care & Wellness specialization within the Hospitality Management curriculum.

This generous donation allows Lexington to create and fully develop a hospitality management specialization that addresses the non-medical areas of caring professions in venues like corporate wellness centers, senior care facilities, child development centers, and social service organizations.

A generous donation allows Lexington to create and fully develop a hospitality management specialization that addresses the non-medical areas of caring professions.

The program includes new coursework in palliative care and care for aging populations. Lexington will hire specialized faculty, develop additional program space, and assemble an advisory board of experts in this field. The college will also host a conference on health care and wellness in the hospitality fields.

“This gift empowers Lexington to educate women with the highest professional and ethical standards in this growing sector of the service industry. Our graduates will become capable managers who will care for and enrich others’ lives, with a deep respect for the dignity of human beings regardless of age or health status,” said Dr. Marta Elvira, Lexington’s Academic Dean.

After a national search, the donor chose Lexington College because of its strong mission and foundation to serve others partnered with a rich curriculum that has been recognized by industry leaders. Lexington provides the student personalized attention in academic growth, career planning and personal development, and the ratio of student to faculty/staff is kept low for just this purpose.  Lexington’s philosophy of education is inspired by the social teachings of the Catholic Church, and it is open to persons of all religious beliefs.