Sydney Mullings

Degree: Master of Science in Hospitality Management

College/School: Chaplin School of Hospitality & Tourism Management

Sydney Mullings has always been driven by unconditional love, a strong work ethic, and a disposition to please others –  all traits he learned from his parents. Although his parents did not have college degrees, they placed a high value on education and always pushed him to go as far as he could go.

So the son of a Jamaican father with a high school degree, and an Italian mother who didn’t finish her bachelor’s degree, came to FIU exploring a law or a medical degree.

He earned a bachelor’s degree in psychology but realized he had chosen the wrong path and told his parents he would focus on working instead.

Around the same time, his parents’ health began to deteriorate. His father was diagnosed with a terminal illness that forced him to stop working. His mother had struggled with lifelong illnesses. Sydney became the main breadwinner and caretaker of both his parents, who passed away within seven months of each other.

As Sydney describes it, he had suddenly lost everything – his role models and best friends. Less than a year later, Sydney began his graduate education in honor of his parents. Four semesters later, he has earned a Master of Science in Hospitality Management with a perfect 4.0 GPA.

Sydney just completed a manager in training internship program. He plans to pursue a career managing food and beverage operations and open his own business in the future.

By Lazaro Gonzalez
Associate Director, Marketing and Communications,
Chaplin School of Hospitality & Tourism Management