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Orlando, Florida, July 2016—The American Hotel & Lodging Educational Institute (AHLEI) has named Christine Saldanha, executive housekeeper at the Crowne Plaza Hotel & Resorts, Dubai, UAE, as winner of the 2016 Lamp of Knowledge Award for Outstanding Distance Learning Student. The Lamp of Knowledge is given to individuals who demonstrate extraordinary commitment to advancing the quality of professionalism and education in the hospitality industry. The Outstanding Distance Learning Student is selected from among those who completed AHLEI’s 12-course Hospitality Management Diploma in the previous year.

Saldanha decided to take AHLEI’s hospitality management courses through Distance Learning to enhance her knowledge and achieve career growth, while boosting her professional confidence.

“In-depth knowledge of all operational departments has enabled me to effectively participate in hotel strategy and goal setting meetings for 2016,” she said. “It has helped improve my leadership competencies and effectively communicate my ideas for the hotel.”

Some of those ideas have included a “reward and recognition” program for team members that raised employee satisfaction scores; revised departmental disciplinary action procedures; and encouraging the property’s participation in a number of “green” and sustainability programs locally. Saldanha also encourages employees at her property and other area hotels to enroll in AHLEI’s Distance Learning courses and mentors them through the e-learning process.

“Receiving the Lamp of Knowledge Award from AHLEI is indeed very satisfying,” said Saldanha. “Education is the key to the future and the process of learning never ends. Today, I feel empowered and energized to fulfill my personal and professional goals and progress towards a brighter future.  AHLEI gives us all the necessary tools we need for a better future, or simply to pursue a new beginning as we embark on our unique career paths.”


Established in 1953 as the nonprofit education and training arm of the American Hotel & Lodging Association (AH&LA), AHLEI’s mission is to continue being the preferred provider to the lodging industry, hospitality schools, and related hospitality industries by developing and providing quality resources to educate, develop, and certify hospitality professionals worldwide.

Contact: Elizabeth Johnson / +1.517.318.2359

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