College of Business > Faculty > A to Z listing of Faculty > Nicholas Thomas

Nicholas J. Thomas

  • Director of the School of Hospitality Leadership and Associate Professor
  • School of Hospitality Leadership
  • (312) 362-6539
  • 14 E. Jackson Blvd., Suite 320
    Chicago, IL 60604

Academic Degrees

PhD, Hospitality Administration, University of Nevada Las Vegas, 2010
MHA, Hospitality Administration, University of Nevada Las Vegas, 2006
BS, Hotel Administration, University of Nevada Las Vegas, 2002

Research and Teaching Interests

Human Resource Management
Generation Y Hospitality Employees
Casino and Entertainment Industry Operations
Technology in Education
Gender in Leadership


Nicholas J. Thomas, PhD serves as the director of the School of Hospitality Leadership, where he is an associate professor. Thomas is also director of the J. Willard and Alice S. Marriott Foundation Center for Student Development and Engagement in the School of Hospitality Leadership. Throughout his career, Thomas has made an effort to channel his deep-rooted passion for helping others to ensure stakeholder objectives are met.

Thomas teaches innovative and practically focused undergraduate and graduate level courses related to human resources, hospitality operations, technology and customer service. In 2015, to complement the face-to-face courses the School of Hospitality Leadership offers, he spearheaded an initiative to place hospitality courses online. The results have been highly positive, and enrollment in these online courses has far exceeded in-class versions of the same course.

In addition to teaching, Thomas is an active researcher in the areas of human resources and hospitality education. The human resources topics he researches include turnover, job satisfaction, organization social capital and supervisor gender. The hospitality education topics he focuses on include the use of technology in the classroom and student expectations as they enter hospitality industry careers. Thomas has been published in the field’s top journals, and has been sought out to author textbook chapters and present his research findings in both academic and industry settings.