Amila Ramanayake has taken office as the new senior director of dining for Chartwells food service operations at Arkansas Tech University.
Ramanayake comes to ATU from Fort Hays State University (Kan.), where he was senior director of dining from 2017-21.
“I enjoy applying my extensive hospitality experience to the dynamic environment unique to higher education food service,” said Ramanayake. “During my time at Chartwells FHSU, I had the pleasure of building an excellent team of associates while elevating the campus dining program and building strong relationships.”
The team Ramanayake led at Fort Hays State earned the FHSU Griffin Family Outstanding Service Award two consecutive years.
A native of Colombo, Sri Lanka, Ramanayake grew up working in family-owned hotels and restaurants.
“Year after year, during school breaks, I returned to help in the kitchen and bus tables,” said Ramanayake. “This made me realize I really enjoy our industry.”
Ramanayake holds a Bachelor of Science degree in hospitality management and is pursuing a Master of Business Administration degree, both from Southeast Missouri State University. He holds an associate degree in culinary arts from L’Ecole Culinaire.
After beginning his hospitality career working in convention centers and country clubs, Ramanayake was employed by Hilton Worldwide (2008-10) and Marriott International (2010-17). He directed operations at facilities in Nashville, Tenn., and Louisville, Ky. Ramanayake also invested three years of his career rebranding 19 Courtyard by Marriott properties.
Chartwells oversees all food service at ATU, including Chambers Cafeteria, Baswell Techionery, Doc’s Place, the coffee bar at Brown Hall and the smoothie bar at the Hull Building Student Union.
Learn more by visiting www.atu.edu/dining.