February 8, 2024


Denny's & Gain
Employees May Earn Up To 30 College Credits from Two Accredited Universities

SPARTANBURG, S.C., February 8, 2024 -- Denny's (NASDAQ: DENN), America’s Diner, announced a partnership with Oakwood University, a Historically Black College and University (HBCU) in Huntsville, AL, and Bay Path University in Longmeadow, MA, marking a significant advancement in its GAIN Program. This collaboration aims to bridge gaps in access to skills training, explore diverse learning avenues, and unlock non-traditional pathways for career growth.

The initiative integrates Denny’s Manager-In-Training (MIT) program with specific courses, enabling participants to earn up to 30 college credits. The MIT program, which requires 500 hours of practical training, is now aligned with university coursework in business and hospitality like Principles of Management, Food Systems Management, Business Communication, and Leadership and Organizational Change.

“This university partnership enriches career development opportunities for our team members,” said Denny’s president and CEO Kelli Valade. “The ability to become a smarter, stronger team member, enabled by these kinds of programs, is central to our brand purpose. When employees thrive, they can grow in other areas, build their families, and create a legacy.”

Dr. Kim Cliett Long, award-winning author and higher education consultant, has been instrumental in developing Denny’s GAIN educational initiatives. A former board member of the Online Learning Consortium, a national collaborative community of higher education leaders and innovators dedicated to advancing quality digital teaching and learning, Dr. Long is a sought-after speaker and thought leader on innovation in academic affairs and administration. She works closely with both Denny’s and its university partners to align the company’s internal training programs with academic curricula. Her expertise ensures that Denny’s team members gain access to education that is both relevant to their professional roles and recognized for academic credit.

“Our GAIN program is not just an educational initiative; it’s part of our people-forward belief system,” said Fasika Melaku, senior vice president of human resources and chief learning officer at Denny’s. “It nurtures the personal and professional development of our team. Our commitment to people’s growth is at the heart of our brand, empowering them to advance in their careers while making a generational impact."

For more information, visit www.dennys.com

About Denny's 

Denny's is a Spartanburg, S.C. based family dining restaurant celebrating its 70th anniversary year and founding purpose: We love to feed people. That purpose has led us to become a restaurant brand that guests worldwide rely on for delicious value and craveable contemporary meals across breakfast, lunch, dinner, and late night. Every day, we welcome guests to dine whenever and however they prefer, whether it's at our brick-and-mortar locations, via Denny's on Demand – the first delivery platform in the family dining segment, or at The Meltdown and The Burger Den, our two virtual restaurants. Our longstanding commitment to supporting our local communities is brought to life with our Mobile Relief Diner that delivers hot meals to our neighbors during times of disaster.

Denny's is one of the largest franchised full-service restaurant brands in the world, based on the number of restaurants. As of December 27, 2023, the Company consisted of 1,631 restaurants, 1,558 of which were franchised and licensed restaurants and 73 of which were company operated. This includes 165 restaurants in Canada, Costa Rica, Curacao, El Salvador, Guam, Guatemala, Honduras, Indonesia, Mexico, New Zealand, the Philippines, Puerto Rico, the United Arab Emirates, and the United Kingdom.

To learn more about Denny's, please visit our brand website at www.dennys.com or the brand's social channels via FacebookTwitterInstagramTikTokLinkedIn or YouTube.