Andrew Goldberg Combines MCCC and Uni. Of Delaware
Programs to Launch Exciting Career in Hospitality Management

4/10/08


Upon finding out about Mercer's Hotel, Restaurant and Institution Management program, Andrew Goldberg '99 (AAS, HRIM) instinctively knew that a professional career in the industry was his calling. A graduate of Hightstown High School, he was attracted to both Mercer's affordability and the opportunity to move directly into the University of Delaware's mostly online bachelor's degree prgoram.

"I always had an interest in the hospitality business," said Goldberg, one of the first students to graduate from the MCCC/University of Delaware joint associate/bachelor of science degree program. "To succeed in the program, I had to be focused, highly self-motivated and self-disciplined. I was willing to do whatever it took to get ahead."

MCCC alum Andrew Goldberg is part of the management team of Marquee Nightclub in NYC. He has also managed club openings in Las Vegas.

Following entry level jobs at the Princeton Hyatt and Princeton University's Frist Center dining facility, Goldberg landed a position at Town, a sleek two-story restaurant noted for simple, but elegant food located in the Chambers Hotel in mid-town Manhattan. Working under noted Executive Chef Geoffrey Zakarian, he first served as room service manager, overseeing overall service down to every detail of customers' orders. A short time later, he was named manager of the Town's lounge, where he helped increase business by delivering attentive service to the clientele.

"At age 22, I was pretty green about the intricacies of food service management," Goldberg admitted. "As a guy from Twin Rivers, New Jersey, I was not a New York 'foodie' by any stretch. Graduating from MCCC/University of Delaware and prior work experience certainly opened the door for me." Town proved to be a critical formative experience for Goldberg as he learned first-hand how top kitchens operate and the passion that goes into food preparation and presentation.

Three years later, nightlife impresarios Jason Strauss and Noah Teppenberg lured Goldberg away from Town, appointing him to the management team that opened the stylish Marquee Nightclub in Manhattan's Chelsea section. The two club owners also named him part of their team to open TAO Nightclub, located in the Venetian Hotel in Las Vegas and Casino, where he worked for nearly a year.

"For me at 25, it was a dream come true," Goldberg said. "When I first sat with Jason and Noah, I was blown away by their focus, vision, and short and long-term goals." Goldberg notes the valuable job skills he has learned from them, including the intricacies of hiring of top-notch employees and what is takes to be a good manager.

With celebrity guests and other prominent individuals as main clients, Goldberg has provided high-level service to such stars as Paris Hilton, Lindsay Lohan, Prince, and Madonna. He has particularly enjoyed working such events as Heidi Klum's Halloween party, Jessica Simpson's beauty line launch, and Justin Timberlake's Madison Square Garden concert after-party. As part of the job, Goldberg has traveled the country to assist in the set-up of Super Bowl bashes and a catered affair at the Sundance Film Festival.

Goldberg, who has been interviewed by Forbes.com, Vegas Magazine and 944 Magazine about an array of customer-service issues, is excited about the opening of yet another nightclub and restaurant, "The Palazzio Tower," to be located in the new tower inside the Venetian Hotel and Casino this summer. Once again, he will be among the front-line managers to ensure a smooth opening. .

Looking back, Goldberg credits Mercer's Marty Goldman, former director of Hospitality programs, Douglas Fee, HRIM Program Coordinator, and instructor Chris dePagnier for stressing that he focus on his goals. This past September he spoke about his career to HRIM students at the University of Delaware and he hopes to do so at MCCC in the near future.

"Andrew has found his niche," Fee said. "We emphasized that he learn about all industry options and try new things. He was not afraid to roll up his sleeves and get involved." DePagnier remembers Goldberg's can-do attitude. "His enthusiasm was infectious. He is somebody who enjoys learning. It's always good to see our students succeed."

Goldberg values his educational journey. "I received a great education at Mercer at well under half the cost. Since day one, I have had great jobs. It is also nice not to have college loans to worry about paying back. I am very happy with the choices I've made."

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