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West Federation


Priyanko Guchait
University of Houston

A Message from the President about the 2021 West Federation CHRIE Conference

Priyanko Guchait, President, West Federation

Every adversity contains, at the same time, a seed of equivalent opportunity (Napoleon Hill). This is what we thought as we started brainstorming about the 2021 West Federation CHRIE conference. We reached a conclusion very quickly that a face to face conference may not be feasible during this crisis. And the decision to NOT cancel the conference was unanimous. Those of you who attend the West Federation conference will agree with me when I say that it feels like you are attending the conference with your family and friends, and WFCHRIE folks know how to have a good time! We wanted to see our friends and family again, even if virtually.  

On that note, I am happy and excited to announce that the 2021 WFCHRIE conference will be held virtually and hosted by Northern Arizona University on February 18-20, 2021. On behalf of WFCHRIE board and members, I would like to thank Dr. Frederick De Micco for graciously agreeing to be our host. Please check out our conference website for all the conference details: The call for proposals has been sent so I would like to take this opportunity to invite faculty and students to submit their proposals. 

The 2021 virtual WFCHRIE conference will be fun, engaging, meaningful and innovative with several new elements. [The conference flyer is attached which includes the conference highlights]. For example, we are excited to announce the new undergraduate research competition which provides an opportunity to promote undergraduate research in hospitality, and promote our graduate programs to the undergraduate students.  The competition is being generously sponsored by the College of Merchandising, Hospitality, & Tourism, at University of North Texas. I would like to take this opportunity to invite undergraduate students and their faculty advisors to submit proposals for the competition.  [A separate call for proposals for the undergraduate research competition along with judging criteria is attached here].

Another new event for the WFCHRIE conference is the Research Hackathon. We will provide a platform where researchers from different universities and diverse hospitality disciplines work in teams to create a unique and new multi-disciplinary research project proposal. Each team will present their proposal to judges, Dr. Fevzi Okumus and Dr. Bruce Tracey, at the conference. Teams will be created based on members’ expertise in their own discipline. The winning proposal/s will get invited to submit their full paper to IJCHM/CHQ within one year that goes through a fast-tracked review process and a possible publication at IJCHM/CHQ. This is a terrific opportunity for researchers to work on a multi-disciplinary research project and possibly achieve a paper publication. Also, this gives a collaboration and networking opportunity to faculty outside their respective programs and universities. More information will be provided soon on the conference website.

There will also be four panel presentations by keynote speakers, along with three professional development sessions during the conference. The first panel will discuss “The Future of Hospitality and Hospitality of the Future.” The topic of the second and third panels, respectively is “Reshaping Hospitality Education” and “Diversity and Inclusion in the Hospitality Industry.” The last panel will discuss Hospitality Ethics, and is sponsored by Northern Arizona University School of Hotel and Restaurant Management.  Attendees can also choose to attend any of our professional development sessions: 1) Effective teaching techniques; 2) Contemporary research design and analysis techniques; and 3) Career Planning/Development.  These sessions are a great opportunity for attendees to learn from top instructors, researchers, and college administrators respectively. There will be best paper awards and a best reviewer award, as has been done in the past. The awards are being generously sponsored by the Conrad N. Hilton College of Hotel and Restaurant Management at University of Houston.  

Finally, no WFCHRIE conference is complete without some elements of fun. Keeping that in mind, we have organized a virtual lunch, and we will enjoy wines from California and Washington State at our wine social (based on eligibility), also virtually.  More to come, so stay tuned! 

Registration for the conference is low – just $49 for faculty and graduate students, and $10 for undergraduate students. See our conference website for details.

Priyanko Guchait, PhD, CHE
Associate Professor  
President, West Federation CHRIE


Federation Overview
Meet the West Federation Board


Call for Proposals


Full information



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