Earlier this year, Cayuga invited two recent MBA graduates to visit and consult with three properties to help assess our social and environmental programs, talk with staff about their visions for the sustainable future of each hotel, and create an annual sustainability report for each property. Throughout the month of September, Soraya Dossa Shattuck and Jen Sotolongo will spend a week each at Lapa Rios Eco Lodge, Arenas del Mar, and Jicaro Island Eco Lodge and provide updates about their experience throughout their stay on our blog.
Soraya and Jen recently earned their MBAs in Sustainable Systems from the Bainbridge Graduate Institute (BGI), the first school to offer an MBA that focuses exclusively on sustainability, incorporating triple bottom line practices (people, planet, profit) into traditional business school education. Passionate about sustainable tourism, Soraya and Jen are eager to learn more about the challenges and opportunities that come with operating a hotel in a sustainable manner.
Soraya spent the first fourteen years of her life in Kenya, after which she moved to the Pacific Northwest with her family and made Washington State her beloved home. Whilst completing her B.A. in Manufacturing and Operations Management at Western Washington University in Bellingham, she took a mountaineers course and fell in love with the beauty and challenge of climbing the enchanting Cascade peaks. Since then, her passion for travel and exploring nature’s playground has grown exponentially. For the past five years, Soraya has been working for a non-profit consulting company helping businesses in the state of Washington integrate lean, environmental, and energy savings into their processes. This experience led her to Bainbridge Graduate Institute where she enhanced her knowledge about the role of sustainability in systems thinking, social justice, and corporate culture. With her Sustainable MBA focus in Organizational Leadership and a Certificate in Sustainable Built Environment, Soraya is excited to inspire positive change and drive increased environmental and social responsibility within the tourism industry.
Jen has a tough time staying in one place for long. She grew up in the Seattle area where she developed a love for the outdoors and perfect summer weather. After enduring the bone-chilling winters and sticky summers while studying journalism and Spanish at Boston University, she ventured to Santiago, Chile to teach English to university students. From Chile, she headed to Wellington, New Zealand, where she worked for a government organization and explored the beauty the country had to offer. After returning home, Jen moved to Tarrytown, New York and worked in development for conservation organizations. She eventually returned to the Pacific Northwest, settling in Portland, Oregon. Realizing that the business world needed more leaders in sustainability, she went on to earn her MBA in Sustainable Systems from Bainbridge Graduate Institute, with a focus on Organizational Leadership and a certificate in the Sustainable Built Environment. Jen can be found running long distances in the woods, hiking in the mountains, and she is always planning her next adventure.
Cayuga Sustainable Hospitality is a world leader in sustainable hospitality management. We manage and market hotels, resorts and eco lodges in Costa Rica and Nicaragua with a focus on high end experiences and sustainability.