Senior VP of Marriott Global Design Strategies to Speak at Kent State | Kent State University

Senior VP of Marriott Global Design Strategies to Speak at Kent State

Schwebel Lecture Series celebrates 20th anniversary

Photo of Karim Khalifa

The Hospitality Management Program at Kent State University is pleased to announce that Karim Khalifa, senior vice president of Marriott Global Design Strategies, will be the 20th Anniversary Schwebel Lecture Series speaker. The Schwebel Lecture will take place on Thursday, April 20, at 4 p.m. in the Kent Student Center Kiva, followed by a reception in the Kent Student Center Ballroom Balcony. This event is free and open to the public, and no reservations are required. 

As senior vice president of Marriott Global Design Strategies, Khalifa leads a dynamic, multidisciplinary team on a mission to shape more meaningful and relevant travel experiences for Marriott guests through design. In 2012, his goal was to understand and address the new millennial generation for the Marriott Hotels brand. This deep-dive approach was a perfect match for launching Marriott’s innovation lab (The Underground), an underground collaborative design space where guest-driven research comes to life, including the new award-winning design strategy for Marriott’s flagship Marriott Hotels brand. 

Prior to his current role, Khalifa oversaw product development and construction for Marriott’s Select Service and Extended Stay brands as senior vice president of design and project management. He also was a key leader in Marriott’s expansion into Africa, Europe and the Middle East. He holds a Bachelor of Science in mechanical engineering. Prior to joining Marriott, he managed Parsons Corporation’s South American practice in Lima, Peru. 

The Schwebel Baking Company of Youngstown, Ohio, is a major supporter of Kent State’s Hospitality Management Program. The Schwebel family established an endowment for the program primarily to support an annual Schwebel Guest Lecture Series. 

For more information about the bachelor’s degree in hospitality management or the master’s degree in hospitality and tourism management at Kent State, visit www.kent.edu/ehhs/hm

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Media Note:
To set up an interview with Karim Khalifa at Kent State University prior to the event, contact Swathi Ravichandran, Ph.D., associate professor and coordinator of the Hospitality Management Program at Kent State, at 330-672-7314.

Photo Caption:
Karim Khalifa, senior vice president of Marriott Global Design Strategies, will be the 20th Anniversary Schwebel Lecture Series speaker on April 20 at Kent State University.

Media Contacts:
Swathi Ravichandran, sravicha@kent.edu, 330-672-7314
Emily Vincent, evincen2@kent.edu, 330-672-8595