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Nikki Gonzales - #MYNSMHSTORY

Meet our 2019-2020 President, Nikki!

Year: Senior

Emphasis: Hotels

Hometown: San Diego, CA

My NSMH Love Story

My very first NSMH Western Regional Conference in 2016 was where I fell in love with NSMH. I had just started my first semester at SDSU, and was eager to get involved. I was the only freshman who signed up to go and was close to dropping out last minute! I had no other friends who were going on the trip, and I had no idea what I was getting myself into. Thank goodness I followed through! The entire weekend fueled my fire in terms of what I wanted to do within hospitality and I met some of the most amazing people. I even met some members from other chapters that I have continued to see at other NSMH conferences!

My NSMH Journey

It all started with the 2016 HTM Back to School BBQ. I was dead set on joining NSMH after Cyrus Stitzel convinced me to join. I vaguely knew him from high school and thought, "He must know what he's talking about!" From there, I signed up for my first trip to the 2016 Western Regional Conference in Pomona, CA, where I fell in love with the organization. I stayed involved as the Chapter Leadership Ambassador later that semester, and attended the 2017 National Conference in Jacksonville, FL, where I met the recruiter who employed me in my first position with Hilton back in December. From there, I interviewed and received my first internship offer as an HR Intern at the Hilton La Jolla Torrey Pines, and I returned to the board as the 2017-2018 Social Media Director.

This position allowed me to showcase my creativity and marketing skillset. I spent the entire summer building a brand new website from scratch ( and designed flyers to help promote our events. I attended the 2017 Western Regional Conference in Anaheim, CA, and the 2018 National Conference in Chicago, IL (where I experienced my very first snowfall!!), taking home the chapter awards for Best Publicity and PR Star.

After studying abroad in Edinburgh, Scotland, fall semester of my junior year, I returned as the 2018-2019 Executive Assistant, where I helped support the team in planning the travel details for the 2019 National Conference. Fast forward to the present, I am so excited to serve as the President of the 2019-2020 SDSU NSMH Executive Board. This organization has defined my college experience along with my growth as an individual and a leader. I want to take the time to specifically thank my past leaders for constantly cheering me on and believing in me these past few years - especially Kim Robles, Brittany Mazal, Cyrus Stitzel and Liz Hayes.

This year, I hope to share the message and opportunities NSMH provides with as many students as I can. I have an eager team of individuals who share the same vision, and many exciting plans for the year. NSMH has given so much to me, it's about time I pass it along to others!

Educational Background

I am currently entering my fourth and final year at SDSU, as an HTM: Hotel Operations Major with a minor in Interdisciplinary Studies with the Weber Honors College.


I learned how to write my first business email in 5th grade while also testing for my black belt!

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