OCC retiree Robert Zemke receives MSU Academic Achievement Award

Retired OCC Culinary Studies Institute faculty member and Bloomfield Hills resident Robert Zemke, 70, has received the coveted Michigan State University School of Hospitality Business Lifetime Academic Achievement Award.  The honor was conferred at the annual conference of the International Council of Hotel, Restaurant and Institutional Education in Providence, Rhode Island on August 2.
 
The award’s purpose is “to honor Michigan State University alumni whose lifetime careers have had a lasting and significant impact on hospitality education.”
 
“I am deeply honored to receive this honor” Zemke said.  “During my career I tried to provide as much information as possible to my classes, but also to make myself available to students and colleagues outside of the classroom as well.”
 
Zemke retired from OCC in 2005 after serving more than 37 years as a member of the hospitality faculty, and for extended periods as department chair at the Orchard Ridge Campus in Farmington Hills.  He was named faculty emeritus by the college in 2007.
 
Among many professional accomplishments Zemke is credited with developing OCC’s Food Technology program, Chef’s Apprentice program and the curricula of the Hotel/Motel Management programs.  He has received numerous professional honors, including a citation by the Michigan Restaurant Association for 25 years of service, designation as an honorary member of the MSU School of Hospitality faculty, and recognition as a 75th Anniversary Year Alumnus of the MSU School of Hospitality Business. 
 
Zemke has also maintained his ties with OCC since his retirement.  He has served as president of the OCC Association of Retired Persons since 2006.