Two of Vail Resorts’ core values are to serve others and do good by contributing to the success of local communities. That code of conduct aligns directly with the company’s multiple efforts to support students and stakeholders of the Daniels College of Business through recruiting partnerships, case competitions and more.
Vail Resorts is a silver-level member of the Daniels Corporate Partners program. The company has been involved with the College’s Race & Case business ethics competition since its inception in 2003—and is often the subject of the case upon which students present. The organization provides lift tickets for all Race & Case participants.
Through the years, Vail Resorts has offered up its leaders as speakers, adjunct professors, student project mentors and in other supportive ways. In fact, CEO Rob Katz was a speaker for the Daniels Voices of Experience series in 2013. The company sends employees and executives to Daniels programs and events regularly, including the Daniels Pioneer Executive Summit in the Rockies and the Institute for Enterprise Ethics roundtables. In addition, Vail Resorts recruits Daniels students as interns and new hires–participating in the Corporate Partner Career Expo, the Rocky Mountain Treks program and the Knoebel School of Hospitality Management Career Fair.
Mark Gasta (Executive MBA 2000), executive vice president and chief people officer at Vail Resorts, says that Vail Resorts and Daniels are “kindred spirits” in more ways than one.
“Daniels and Vail Resorts share many of the same values and principles and ultimately we believe in the mission of the College and the types of leaders that it helps produce,” Gasta says. “Vail Resorts is in the business of trying to make our world thrive and in order to do that, we know we need leaders who come to the table with a grasp of systemic thought and sustainable business practices. We very much believe that by engaging with Daniels, we have a positive impact on our community and we help develop a talent pool from which we can recruit to improve our own organization.”
Andrea Matousek, senior director of advancement and corporate and community relations, says that the Daniels-Vail Resorts partnership is treasured by the College. “Vail Resorts is truly invested in making Daniels a better institution and a better partner to our communities and stakeholders,” she says. “I know that whether we need a speaker, a participant in an event or program, an expert opinion or something else, Vail Resorts is there to help. We’re so grateful to them for all of their help, and excited about what the future holds for the relationship.”
Currently, Vail Resorts employs 81 DU alumni and students—many of whom engage and connect with Daniels students and stakeholders regularly. Sean Conboy (Professional MBA 2010), an energy manager with Vail Resorts, serves on the Daniels Alumni Advisory Board and the Dean’s Society steering committee. He occasionally speaks to Daniels classes for student projects about corporate sustainability. He chose Daniels for his own education because what he calls the, “quality network of alumni, students and faculty, and to create an excellent network.” Conboy is also one of the founding partners of Cohort Capital, a structured investment fund founded by a group of 13 Daniels MBA alumni in 2012.
“It’s definitely a mutually beneficial partnership that helps Vail Resorts as well as the next generation of professionals,” Conboy says. “Development and sustainability are very important to this company and we are encouraged to take those values and put them into meaningful action.” Conboy is quick to point out that although he is an active Daniels alumnus, he’s not the only one at Vail Resorts. “There are a lot of us alumni here who are excited about Daniels and what the College does, and recognize what a powerful partnership this is for both sides.”
Vail Resorts, Inc. is the premier mountain resort company in the world and a leader in luxury, destination-based travel at iconic locations. In addition to its mountain, lodging and real estate development segments, Vail Resorts is highly committed to the vitality of its communities and the conservation of the natural environment, offering employees a multitude of opportunities to make a positive impact. Vail Resorts raises millions of dollars for nonprofits and projects, grants scholarships and other financial support to schools, communities and landscapes and more. Learn more at vailresorts.com.