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Sheryl F. Kline - University of Delaware. Newark, DE, US

Sheryl F. Kline

Professor, Hospitality | University of Delaware


Prof. Kline's research focuses on organizational behavior and training in the hospitality, meeting and event industry.





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UD Lerner 2019




Dr. Sheryl Kline currently serves as the Deputy Dean at the Lerner College of Business and Economics at the University of Delaware, she holds the Aramark Chaired professorship in Hospitality Business Management. Throughout her career, Dr. Kline has consistently demonstrated exceptional leadership abilities in both academic and professional spheres. Her contributions to the field of hospitality management are recognized, with numerous articles in leading academic journals and she is widely cited in other publications, including the Wall Street Journal, Washington Post, USA Today, Lodging Magazine, and Hotel News Now.
Dr. Kline's research focuses on organizational behavior and training within the hospitality and event industry and hospitality healthcare. Her work has earned her a position among the top 25 most productive scholars in hospitality management (Way et al., 2012). Before her academic career, Dr. Kline accumulated over a decade of experience in the casino, hotel, and resort industry Dr. Kline teaches courses at both graduate and undergraduate levels. She has taught Introduction to Hospitality Management, Hospitality Human Resources, Organizational Development and Training, and Lodging Management courses. Dr. Kline's engagement with industry associations, including the International Council of Hotel, Restaurant, and Institutional Education (I-CHRIE), the American Hotel and Lodging Association, and the Delaware Restaurant Association. She has also served on their boards, contributing her knowledge and expertise to shape the industry's future. She has received several prestigious teaching and research awards. Notable among them are the I-CHRIE John Wiley and Sons Award for Innovation in Teaching and the McCool Breakthrough Award in Hospitality Education. Furthermore, her leadership qualities were recognized at USC, where she was selected as an Academic Leadership Fellow for the Southeastern Conference. She was honored as one of 40 women in Delaware, earning the title of Delaware Businesswomen of the Year by Delaware Today Magazine. In summary, Dr.Kline's exceptional leadership, commitment to research and education, and valuable industry experience have earned her a prominent place among the leading business and hospitality management higher education experts. Her passion for excellence and dedication to shaping future leaders continue to inspire and leave a lasting impact on the academic community and the hospitality industry.

Industry Expertise (2)



Areas of Expertise (5)


Organizational Behavior


Sport Business Management

Hospitality Management

Media Appearances (5)

Fine dining: Danny Meyer discusses enlightened hospitality

University of Delaware UDaily  online


The series, sponsored by the Department of Hospitality and Sport Business Management at UD’s Alfred Lerner College of Business and Economics, featured a chat between Meyer and Sheryl Kline, deputy dean at Lerner College and Aramark Chaired Professor in the department.

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Bridging hospitality and healthcare

University of Delaware UDaily  online


“The doctor or the medical provider must really stop and ask questions of the patient: what are they thinking? What are they feeling? And really build that relationship,” said Sheryl Kline, deputy dean and Aramark Chaired Professor in the University of Delaware’s Alfred Lerner College of Business and Economics.

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National search underway

University of Delaware UDaily  online


A national search is now underway to identify the next dean of the University of Delaware’s Alfred Lerner College of Business and Economics, UD President Dennis Assanis and Provost Laura Carlson announced today.

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How do you know if your hotel room is really clean amid coronavirus?

USA Today  online


"It's difficult to distinguish between legitimate cleaning efforts and public relations," says Sheryl Kline, a professor at the University of Delaware who has researched hotel hygiene. "Anyone can do a visual inspection, and it can look clean. Just because it looks clean does not necessarily mean that it is clean."

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COVID-19 - Tips for Hotel Managers

Hospitality Net  online


As we prepare for the potential spread of the COVID-19 virus, there are some precautions hotel managers and staff can take to improve guest and employee health and safety. Early evidence suggests that the virus that causes COVID-19 can spread more easily than the virus that causes seasonal influenza, and it appears that the COVID-19 disease is more deadly than seasonal influenza.

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Articles (5)

Hospitality to healthcare: Patient Experience Academy, a successful alliance between the ChristianaCare Health System and the University of Delaware

International Journal of Hospitality Management

2023 This exemplary case study describes a successful collaboration between a healthcare system and a hospitality management program to bring hospitality to healthcare. ChristianaCare Health System (CCHS) and University of Delaware’s Hospitality and Sport Management partnered to create Patient Experience Academy. The program focused on a training intervention, supported by leadership to enhance the patient and guest experience at the ChristianaCare Health System (CCHS).

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Consumers’ lodging intentions during a pandemic: empirical insights for crisis management practices based on protection motivation theory and expectancy theory

International Journal of Contemporary Hospitality Management

2022 Drawing on protection motivation theory (PMT) and expectancy theory, this study aims to investigate consumers’ lodging consumption intentions during a pandemic crisis.

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The cleanliness of restaurants: ATP tests (reality) vs consumers’ perception

International Journal of Contemporary Hospitality Management

2021 This study aims to empirically assess restaurant surfaces’ cleanliness and compare them to customers’ perceptions about the cleanliness of surfaces when dining in a restaurant.

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Teaching Etiquette to Students in Hospitality and Tourism Programs

Journal of Hospitality & Tourism Research

2021 Over the past seventy-five years, recruiters continue to expect to hire hospitality graduates with practiced soft skills, good manners, and proper etiquette knowledge (Chi, & Gursoy, 2009). Therefore, customer service, interpersonal and teamwork skills, even during the COVID-19 crisis, are in demand.

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Does hotel cleanliness correlate with surfaces guests contact?

International Journal of Contemporary Hospitality Management

2019 This study aims to strengthen implications about hotel cleaning outcomes by comparing guests’ perception of the amount of contact they have with cleanliness of hotel surfaces.

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Accomplishments (3)

Delaware Business Women of the Year (professional)

2015 Delaware Today Magazine

Academic Leadership Development Fellow for the South Eastern Conference (SEC) (professional)

2008 University of South Carolina

John Wiley and Sons Award for Innovation in Teaching (professional)

2007 International Council of Hotel Restaurant, Institutional Education

Education (3)

Temple University: PhD, Organizational Psychology

University of Nevada: MS, Hospitality Administration

Rutgers University: BA, Economics and English 1982

Affiliations (5)

  • American Hotel and Lodging Association (AH&LA), Member
  • AH&LA Education Advisory Council member
  • International Council of Hotel and Restaurant Educators, member
  • Delaware Restaurant Association, Board member
  • Delaware Lodging Association, Board member