Through WCCUSD’s Ivy League Connection program, Hercules High School Students Justine Betschart, Stacy Chan, Ramiah Davis-Shephard, Louisa Man, Julia Maniquiz, and Yueming Wang will be attending Cornell University to either study Freedom and Justice or Hotel Operations Management during the summer of 2009.

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

"Wonderful Wednesday"

Today I woke up before my alarm once again. That was indeed a great sign. After a smooth morning routine, I soon found myself sitting in the lecture hall impatiently waiting for the start of today's lesson. Another great sign! Professor Reneta began the day by giving class an interesting lecture on business management regarding customer wants/needs, financial statements, and room contribution statements. I learned a lot about managing revenue, budgeting expenses, and satisfying categories of customers.

Although the lecture was educational and entertaining, the best part of the day was when I was allowed to explore the CHESS program. After knowing that there are many aspects of the game that needs to be controlled within a short period of time, I was worried about the way my simulation would turn out. A few minutes later, I found myself attached to CHESS. I had to literally force myself to stop to listen to more of Professor Reneta's instructions. It was that entertaining. I would like to think that my first trial turned out to be a success. I paused for a while after running a virtual 9-day running of my 250-room hotel located in Syracuse, New York to record data and change business strategies. Improving the business strategies [i.e. investing more money for advertisement to attract leisure hotel customers on the weekends and decreasing hotel agency commission rates to a more 4% instead of 10%] proved to be extremely helpful. I observed my data analyzer after a few days of the improved business strategies, I saw significant increases in revenue and overall occupation rate which made my hotel more successful. I look forward to more efficiency in the future. I can see that CHESS will be a great virtual business experience!

In the afternoon, I had the second part of our MS Word 2007 lecture in the Bin Computer Lab B which was centered around developing a me
mo template. I had never learned how to use my own templates of any sort so it was fascinating to learn. We also had a lecture on effective ways to deliver a presentation which was the most humorous, entertaining lecture yet.

I must admit that my mood could not have been better today. The beautiful weather convinced Stacy, Louisa, and I to take a detour after the end of our afternoon lectures. We went to take a tour of Collegetown, a stretch of the campus with shops that can be easily accessed by attending students. On our way, we decided to stop by the campus-famous bagel shop called Collegetown Bagels (what a brilliant name!). Here are some photos of our nice stroll:

* It was our first time walking in this section of the campus. A polite gentleman was kind enough to take a photo for us while we stood by the school sign.

* On our way to Collegetown, which happens to be on College Ave!

* My bagel! It was so delicious that I had to share the picture!

* The clock tower. It chimes a nice melody once the hour hand strikes 12.

* On our way back to the Mary Donlon dormatory from Collegetown. This is the Barnes Hall.

It is true that pictures may be worth a million words. I believe that entirely. I snapped over 60 photos on our little stroll today. But I also keep in mind that an experience like this is worth more than a billion photos! Today has been one "Wonderful Wednesday"!


  1. Yueming,

    It sure sounds as though this is a perfect fit for you. You're assimilating wonderfully and adapting to the program so well.

    I hope that when you return you'll share your archive of photos with me. I'm one of those guys that really does enjoy looking at other people's vacation photos.

    I'm one of those people that when a business does a good job I let them know and when they could improve I let them know that as well. The problem I've seen all too often, Yueming, is that too few businesses--and hotels are amongst them--that don't provide a mechanism to give their clients an opportunity to tell them what's working, what's not working and what it is they need if they're to continue to do business with them.

    I just returned from a four day stay at a mid-range motel chain where they gave us the option of being green (sine I was in Texas they would have no idea that we invented Green). We could make arrangements where they would not change our bed linens every day unless we asked.

    I'm not one that requires fresh bed linens every night so I opted for that arrangement. Had they provided me a way to let them know, though, I would have told them that being Green didn't mean they didn't have to make the beds or replace the towels. Even though they have plenty of outlets here in California, I won't be making an effort to use their facilities in the future.

    They lost my business because they didn't know how to communicate with their customers.

    Also, this motel gets most of their business from families attending graduation ceremonies at the nearby Air Force Base. A nice feature they offered was a continental breakfast from 7 AM til 9 AM. This would be great except the affairs at the air base started at 7 AM meaning that virtually none of the guests of the motel could take advantage of the free continental breakfast. The y I saw it is that the motel chain already knows the schedule and thinks that the offer of the free breakfast is good enough or they haven't made enough of an effort to find out what it is that their guests really want/need and adjust their breakfast schedule accordingly.

    By the way, at 5 AM the Denny's right next door was wall to wall filled with motel guests who had already paid for a breakfast at the motel.

  2. Yueming,

    Great job posting and wonderful pictures.

    Your classes seem very comprehensive. I'm looking forward to visitng the class. I really am impressed with your description of the "virtual hotel" -- this is a wonderful idea and it sounds like you are a natural at it.

    Cornell is incredibly picturesque and I do appreciate your sharing your pictures with us.

    Keep up the great blogging -- I'll see you next week.