Bacardi USA Makes Multi-Million Donation to FIU Hospitality

Check Presentation at Bacardi-FIU Dinner hosted at Southern Glazer's Wine & Spirits in Wynwood, FL. From left to right: Michael Cheng/Dean Chaplin School of Hospitality & Tourism Management, Wayne E. Chaplin/ CEO, Southern Glazer's Wine & Spirits, Facundo L. Bacardi/Chairman of the Board Bacardi Limited, Pete Carr/President, Bacardi North America, Mark B. Rosenberg/FIU President. Photo courtesy of FIU News.

By: Victor Jorges / News Director

Last year, it was Badia Spices. This year, it’s Bacardi USA  that donates a significant amount of money to FIU’s Hospitality School’s expanding curriculum. 

In a press release, the university announced the $5 million gift “dedicated to a new and unique educational program tailored for the spirits industry.”

The donation will be used to create the Bacardi Center of Excellence. This would position the school as a leader in the beverage industry. The center would provide student scholarships and promote events. 

The Bacardi Beverage Innovation Fund is part of this initiative and will be used to create a beverage-specific curriculum. Additionally, it would harness collaborations between the company and FIU faculty. 

The multi-million-dollar gift will also create the Bacardi Classroom, a Bacardi Spirits Management Track, and BacardiTeach. The latest will include mini degrees opportunities for FIU students and more. 

The gift also further expands the programming for FIU’s CasaCuba.

CasaCuba is an initiative by the university to harvest the discussion and study of all things Cuba: history, policy, business, and culture. 

Bacardi was founded in Cuba by Don Facundo Bacardí Massó in 1962.

“As a company proud of its Cuba origins, we are excited to support CasaCuba and help spotlight the culture that is forever a part of our story,” said Peter Carr, President of Bacardi North America in the press release.

According to the press release, Bacardi Limited is the largest privately-owned spirits company in the world. South Florida is host to the regional headquarters for the U.S.

President Mark. B Rosenberg said that he is proud of the partnership with Bacardi because of its deep roots in the community and its century-old Cuban legacy. 

“This gift will fuel a perfect combination of tradition and forward-looking projects that will benefit our students and the entire community for generations,” said Rosenberg in the press release.

Similarly, the spirits company’s president is proud to “strengthen the hospitality and tourism management work at FIU,” said Carr.

The gift is a part of the Next Horizon campaign. As of press time, the campaign had raised more than $552 million. 

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