My name is Karlein Punsalan Narciso and I am a student at the University of Maryland Eastern Shore (UMES) at the Universities at Shady Grove (USG). I am studying Hospitality and Tourism Management (HTM) and I am excited to be completing my studies at USG. I first learned about the programs offered here while studying at Montgomery College (MC), but my collegiate career actually began in Las Vegas, Nevada where, even then, I chose to start my studies in Hospitality Management. Fortunately, my professors at MC were advocates for me to earn my bachelor’s degree and encouraged me to continue in school.
Maryland has always been home and where I was raised, so finding out about my program’s availability at USG was quite a blessing to be able to study what I was passionate about. I have always worked in sales, as well as food and beverage in restaurants. I’ve learned that working alongside a team and taking care of guests is a strength of mine. My parents and family are a huge influence in my life and have always encouraged me to go beyond my comfort zone. I believe that knowledge is power, so I wanted to take my passion a step further and complete my bachelor’s degree in Hospitality Management.
Every semester the students in my program are in charge of organizing, working, and cooking, for multiple events hosted at USG. It’s an intense and rigorous experience, but ultimately teaches us a taste of real-world experience. We are in charge of so many aspects to creating successful events.
Outside of my studies, I am a member of the International Hospitality Club, and I’ve often participated in USG’s Cultural Tea Time events. One in particular, highlighted the Philippines and I was able to share my Filipino culture with other students on campus. I am proud to be Kapampangan, and like the rest of all Filipinos, I come from an enormous family. The world of incredible cooking and caring for others is in my blood.
My goal is to one day in the near future, own and run my own Filipino restaurant. I want to excite the minds of people’s thoughts and interests in our food. I hope that with my restaurant, more people will be familiar and comfortable with the food and grow to love it as much as I do. I look forward to the day I get the pleasure of serving you as my guest at my restaurant!