Growing up in Little Haiti in a Cuban family, Jovani Salceiro is the first in his family to attend college or even finish high school. Since being diagnosed at age 10 with epilepsy due to a brain tumor, he has lived with frequent seizures. He almost dropped out of high school and never thought of going to college, but he promised his grandmother, who lost her battle with cancer in 2004, that he would earn a bachelor’s degree.
After nine years in the hotel industry, he felt his career had reached its ceiling. Remembering his promise to this grandmother, Jovani earned his associate degree from Miami Dade College in 2013, with a 4.0 GPA. He transferred to the Chaplin School at FIU, and left his job to focus full-time on school and help raise his two young sons, Jayden and Jayson, while his fiancé, Lovely, continued working.
During his 15-year career in hospitality, Jovani always wanted to work for Marriott International. In 2015, he secured a position at the New Residence Inn Miami Beach South Beach, a Marriott property, and currently serves as assistant general manager.
A recipient of several prestigious scholarships, including the Hyatt Hotels Scholarship for Minority Lodging Management Students, the Statler Foundation Scholarship for Excellence, Hilton Worldwide Scholarship, Carnival Cruise Lines Scholarship, and Anthony G. Marshall American Dream Scholarship Jovani credits his success to the faculty and advisors at the Chaplin School, particularly faculty mentors Miranda Kitterlin and Sean Chang.