New Installation Celebrates Marriott 25

The Marriott Story photo

Twenty-five years ago today, the BYU School of Management was forever changed by the addition of an auspicious name: Marriott. As part of the yearlong Marriott 25 celebration the school’s external relations office created custom wall installations to highlight the history and legacy of the Marriott family. The mounted-glass murals are currently hanging in the fourth-floor corridor. So peruse the design concepts and text below—we’ve compiled it all in honor of the Marriott School of Management’s twenty-fifth birthday. Now we just need to find some confetti!

Marriott Story

JW Marriott quote


J. Willard Marriott, the grandson of Mormon pioneers, was born at the turn of the century near Ogden, Utah. Raised on his family’s farm, he left the Wasatch Front on his nineteenth birthday to serve in the New England Mission.

On his way home from his missionary service, Bill passed through Washington, D.C., during the sweltering summer of 1921. Crowds of overheated tourists couldn’t get enough of the cold drinks, soda, and ice cream peddled by street vendors. The business opportunity didn’t go unnoticed.
Back in Utah, Bill pursued a degree at Weber College and then at the University of Utah. There he met Alice Sheets, a talented honors student. The pair married in the Salt Lake Temple on 9 June 1927 and left for D.C. on their wedding day in a Model T. Ford. When they arrived eleven days later, they opened a nine-stool A&W Root Beer stand. Business boomed until the weather cooled. Adapting to the winter chill, the Marriotts added hot tamales, chili, and hamburgers to the menu and named their place The Hot Shoppe.

The food sold fast, and Bill and Alice continued to grow their little start-up into Marriott International—the world’s leading lodging company with nearly four thousand hotels in more than seventy-five countries and territories.

Our great name

Pres Hinckley quote


On 28 October 1988 the Brigham Young University School of Management added an auspicious name: Marriott.

“It is fitting that this school of management, whose students are not only taught the important business principles but also the significance of integrity in their professions, be named after two people whose lives have exemplified that most noble characteristic,” said President Ezra Taft Benson.

J. Willard and Alice S. Marriott, founders of the Marriott Corporation, remain two of America’s most successful entrepreneurs. They built several national restaurant chains, a successful in-flight airline catering business, and a global lodging empire on the principles of hard work, ingenuity, and common sense. Mr. Marriott’s frequent advice to young people was simple: “work and pray.”

“I am grateful for this tremendous school of management, which inevitably will grow in importance across the world, will carry the distinguished name of the J. Willard and Alice S. Marriott School of Management at Brigham Young University,” said President Gordon B. Hinckley, then first counselor in the First Presidency, at the school’s naming ceremony. “No one can foretell the consequence of that which you do this day in terms of the lives of young men and women who will come here to learn and go across the world to serve.”

Learn more about the Marriott family’s values in Becoming Marriott, the kickoff feature for the Marriott 25 celebration, in the fall issue of Marriott Alumni Magazine.