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UH Moment

UH Moment: “Par Excellence”

Students at the University of Houston Conrad N. Hilton College of Hotel and Restaurant Management have been “serving up” success—and scholarships—for 25 years. Listen to this week’s UH Moment.


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ParEx students prepare for an eventFor 25 years students with Par Excellence have been managing and operating a first-class hospitality staffing business for upscale events for UH and the Houston community.

“A caterer may call us or say you’re having an event at your home and you’d like an extra hand,” said student and Par Excellence General Manager Matthew Riggs.  “We do a lot of bartending in people’s homes, they may cook or having something catered and we’ll take care of the rest.”

Par Ex—as it is referred to by students—can suggest creative ways to display your buffet, help you find a caterer, present ideas for accents and decorations and of course, staff events from beginning to clean up.  These students will one day own their own businesses or work in prestigious hotels or resorts. 

The ParEx Penguins“We are an honors student organization,” Riggs said.  “We require our students to have completed at least one semester in the hotel and restaurant management program and have a 3.0 GPA and they have to go through an interview process by our executive staff.”

Par Excellence serves a broad clientele base, more than 100 events a semester and all profits are used to fund the organization’s scholarships and to cover operational expenses.  And Par Ex “penguins” are for hire. 

“We’re living up to our name, Par Excellence,” Riggs said. 

Par Excellence is part of what’s happening at the University of Houston.

Telling the stories of the University of Houston, this UH Moment is brought to you by KUHF, listener supported radio from the University of Houston.