group photo of SFA students recently inducted as founding members into the new university chapter of Eta Sigma Delta honor society

Stephen F. Austin State University senior James Crim (seated front row center) is pictured with 20 other SFA students who were recently inducted as founding members into the new university chapter of Eta Sigma Delta honor society in April. The hospitality administration honor society provides students with opportunities to network on a national level.

NACOGDOCHES, Texas - Stephen F. Austin State University senior hospitality administration major James Crim may be graduating and embarking on a new journey this Saturday, but he will be leaving a legacy at his alma mater.

During the past seven months, Crim, a native of Lake Jackson, Texas, has worked to establish an SFA chapter of Eta Sigma Delta, a national hospitality administration honor society. After researching national organizations and filling out the required documents, Crim and 22 founding members finalized the SFA chapter in April.

"The purpose of this organization is to allow faculty members and students within the human sciences field to network on a more professional level," Crim said. "Students who were already working hard can now be rewarded for it."

ESD members must be hospitality administration majors who have a minimum 3.0 GPA and completed 50 percent of their core classes at SFA.

"This gives students a great opportunity to network. It also means I'm leaving a legacy behind," Crim said. "Now, future members will have more opportunities to succeed and make this organization great."

ESD is affiliated with the International Council on Hotel, Restaurant and Institutional Education, meaning ESD members will be able to attend an annual conference in the summer to work with industry professionals and learn innovative skills.

Dr. Mary Olle, assistant professor in SFA's School of Human Sciences, is the faculty adviser for ESD.

"We are very proud of what James has accomplished, and he's leaving a legacy for future hospitality majors to live up to. He is a natural leader, and we are going to miss him when he graduates," Olle said.

Next semester's ESD officers have been selected, and Crim and Olle assure they have set philanthropic goals to assist the organization as it grows.

"I hope to see organization members be extremely active, both locally and nationally. Also, I hope this opens up opportunities for our students to grow academically and professionally," Olle said.

Crim will graduate with honors and has accepted a professional management internship with Disney World in Orlando, Florida.

"I'm looking forward to all the magical moments I'll be involved with at Disney," Crim said. "Disney is one of the biggest names in the hospitality industry, and I'm excited to learn interesting management-skill techniques."