I recently blogged about our new program with Rosetta Stone that will allow us to train our people in more languages. And in the past I've blogged about our Sed de Saber - "Thirst for Knowledge" - program that has been so successful in teaching English to our Spanish-speaking associates.
Our customers and associates speak countless different languages, and we love the fact that we are able to help our associates communicate better with our guests, with each other, as well, and in their personal lives.
That's why we support the bipartisan bill now in the U.S. Congress called "Strengthening Communities through Education and Integration Act of 2008." This bill, sponsored by Rep. Ileana Ros-Lehtinen (R-Florida), Rep. Mike Honda (D-California), Rep. Ruben Hinojosa (D-Texas) and Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton (D-New York), encourages employers to invest in language and other training for their employees by offering them a tax credit.
We've always been committed to training at Marriott, and now this legislation will help companies teach more language skills to their associates. Making language programs more affordable for employers will help encourage them to offer such training to their employees.
So, Marriott supports this bill because it broadens the base of companies that are investing in the growth and education of their employees. Our associates are Marriott's greatest asset. We're constantly looking for ways to help them grow by providing new opportunities - something that is deeply embedded in our company culture.
I'm Bill Marriott, and thanks for helping me keep Marriott on the move.