Sir Garry Hawkes and Danny Pecorelli awarded honorary degrees by the Edge Hotel School
Two leading lights in the hospitality industry are among a dozen people from all walks of life to be awarded honorary degrees at Graduation 2016 at the University of Essex, home of the Edge Hotel School.
Sir Garry Hawkes
Described as one of the pioneers within the contract catering sector, Sir Garry is now Director of the Edge Foundation, former President of Hospitality Action, President of the British Hospitality Association, former Chairman of Edexcel and former Chair of the Basic Skills Agency.
He went to Huddersfield Polytechnic and studied Hospitality Management for three years. After studying, he rose through the ranks to become chief executive of international catering company Gardner Merchant, leading the management buyout to buy the company. Sir Garry then became chairman of Edexcel, which he later sold to Pearson, the publishers of the Financial Times.
With the proceeds he set up the independent educational charity The Edge Foundation, which supports technical, practical, vocational and professional education through the UK. Sir Garry was awarded a CBE for services to tourism and the catering industry.
Successful hotelier Danny Pecorelli is the Managing Director of the luxury hotel group Exclusive Hotels and Venues.
Running four hotels, two venues and two golf clubs and holding an unprecedented 20 AA Rosettes and four Michelin stars between them, Mr Pecorelli has been the recipient of numerous awards and commendations throughout his career, including Hotelier of the Year 2014.
Having worked his way up over the past 25 years through the hospitality industry, Mr Pecorelli is a firm believer in career progression and is passionate about hospitality education.
He is a keen supporter of the unique Edge Hotel School, based at Wivenhoe House. Mr Pecorelli regularly visits the School to give his popular masterclasses on the hospitality industry and through Exclusive Hotels and Venues Group provides scholarships and mentoring to students working towards their degrees in Hotel Management.
About Edge Hotel School
Edge Hotel School combines a fantastic breadth and depth of hands-on experience with a fast track to a respected degree from the University of Essex in Hotel Management. By equipping you from the outset with professional and management skills as well as academic theory, the course aims to get you started in your career as soon as possible. A two-year, intensive programme that reflects the realities of life in the hospitality industry. You will be part of a close-knit team serving actual paying guests, you also enjoy all the advantages of University campus life, with access to student facilities and accommodation. The Edge Hotel School has a close and collaborative relationship with the industry that includes scholarships, masterclasses and sponsorship.