Education is needed to safeguard tourism’s future

It’s hard to believe that for the majority of us in the UK and beyond it has been three years since we were able to travel for anything other than essential business reasons.

As we contemplate the opportunities we have to take those long-awaited trips, we find not only the world and its travel, tourism and hospitality sector greatly changed, but also our perceptions of our own place in it.

The pandemic did far more than simply close down our ability to travel to distant shores and either rest and relax on beaches or learn about the wonders of new culture, ancient geography and beautiful architecture.

A lot happened in the two years that, cumulatively, moved focus away from that sense of migratory deprivation we all felt in confinement and instead forced us to consider both how we impact on our world as a species and how we now make mass tourism environmentally sustainable.

Education is at the heart of both these things.

In fundamental commercial terms, education and learning will inform the nature and path of recovery in a sector decimated by enforced closure and the collapse of the job economy that sustained it. In essence, how do we quickly replace the skills that have been lost to us?

But the challenges ahead are more complex than simply returning to a previously accepted status quo.

In addition to equipping our industry with the key skills, knowledge and expertise needed to secure the sector’s immediate future over the next 12 to 36 months, we also need to act now to create learning pathways that serve to reinvent the environmental proposition that travel presents.

The adverse, negative impacts of global travel were laid bare in myriad ways during our period of global lockdown.

Few among us, for example, can fail to have been staggered by images of crystal-clear water running through the canals of Venice just a few short weeks after the cruise liners and other powered waterway traffic disappeared from the city’s lagoon.

In Los Angeles – famous for the smog that routinely sits on its skyline – lower emissions served to improve air quality exponentially, benefiting health and the effect of noxious gases on both flora and fauna.

A 2-year period of lower emissions worldwide seen in a cliff drop in air, marine and road travel will have led to equivalent benefits in other parts of the world, from cities to rainforest.

Other benefits may be less obvious. It’s thought, for example, that the global disruption to supply lines caused by lockdown almost certainly led to a huge reduction in poaching and trade in furs and ivory.

And the ripple effect of lockdown also triggers interesting consequences in other respects. The cessation of movement around the globe led to negative impacts, such as an increase in the use of plastics and other non-recyclables.

But this, too, provokes positive responses with commerce then forced to reconsider how it delivers service and goods that are less reliant on such products.

The small steps taken in response to the negative environmental impact of lockdown – e.g. increased charges for plastic bags, a ban on plastic drinking straws by cinemas and the like, and an uptick in recyclable fuels and materials – will all eventually evolve into the kind of momentum that will slow mankind’s footprint on the earth.

What does this mean for those of us in the hospitality and tourism industries and the way we might now choose to provide vocational education and training?

Doubtless, as time goes on, there will be many consequences in this regard, but one certainty is surely that we must ensure that the journeys and experiences we create for others do as little damage as possible.

We must find ways of ensuring that the industry’s future leaders – the generation of caretakers we are currently educating in our schools, colleges, businesses, and universities – are able to think in new ways to build a solutions-based approach to travel in the medium to long term.

How do we get people to where they want to be whilst also reducing our dependence on current resources and technologies? What role should we play in helping lawmakers and environmental advocacy programmes to re-educate travellers in how they access fragile cultures and eco-systems?

This will require us to work alongside technology innovators to encourage and inform the changes that are needed in supply and logistics chains, and to find new and effective ways of collaborating with our stakeholders to communicate shared goals and objectives.

The reward for that will likely be a travel and tourism sector that is more resilient and robust, more accessible, and more responsible.

GTTP Kenya: Shift In The Tourism Industry

GTTP Kenya have released their latest quarterly newsletter: Shift In The Tourism Industry, with an introduction from the Country Director of GTTP East Africa: Joseph Okelo.

Find out about how according to Dominic Wanjiru “a resilient tourism sector would be guided by sustainability, safety (health/security, responsibility, and innovation.”

Also inside this edition you can read about the musings of a volunteer, the impact of COVID-19 on children’s education in Kenya, and a review of the GTTP Kenya program overall.

Read the newsletter here.

GTTP Russia student competition: Biomimetic protection for travellers.

The Online Innovation Camp on November 24-26 focused on new and creative solutions in hospitality business. The challenge was to suggest the ways hotels can transform their strategies and products to address safety concerns amid and post-COVID. Over three days 38 teams of talented students from 15 cities across Russia worked on their solutions. The winning team suggested a gadget designed to effectively keep physical distancing measures in place for hotel employees and guests. 1st runner up suggested a complex of new products and services that prioritize safety and sanitization to protect guests’ and employees’ health.

“Today, on January 20, we attended a lecture by an employee of the leading global travel network, Amadeus, and learned what kind of company it is; how many airlines work with Amadeus; where they mostly get their income from; about the prospects of Amadeus, as well as how the company wants to improve the environmental situation in the world. This lecture broadened my horizons. And I realized that you can try different jobs in different areas to find the job that is really good for you, and that it can be a job in travel & tourism. I want to thank Charoula Gkioka, Junior Achievement and GTTP for this experience.” GTTP Russia student.

“GTTP Mentoring Marathon was different from all previous events and trainings that I had attended before, in its informativeness and variety of experiences. It combined lecturing, practical training, business games and speed networking with professionals. One of the most memorable events was employability training. For the first time in my life I developed a resume and went through a mock interview with a real recruiter. Strange, but I had never thought about what to write and tell about myself in order to reveal to the employer exactly those qualities and abilities that are required, and had not realized how consistently and clearly it should be done. Extraordinary experience! Very useful for my future!” GTTP Russia student.

«To begin with, I want to thank the organizers of GTTP Innovation camp. I was so surprised and excited to find out that, despite the pandemic, we are still granted the opportunity to participate in a inspiring event that challenges us to come up with innovation ideas and think how to make them real. What’s more is that the chosen topic – how the hotels can transform their strategies and products to address safety concerns amid and post-COVID is so extremely important for tourists, for hospitality industry and T&T. It was a real challenge and a great pleasure to work on and present our decision, and to listen to other teams’ suggestions – so very interesting and hopefully really useful for the hospitality industry.» GTTP Russia student.

Student research winners from 12 nations presented findings at Nice, France conference hosted by Global Travel and Tourism Partnership

The Global Travel and Tourism Partnership (GTTP) announced that 24 secondary and tertiary students from 12 countries were selected as 2017 Student Research Competition winners out of approximately 2,000 entries. The students presented their case study research findings at the GTTP’s annual student/teacher conference this November 27 – 28 in Nice, France.

The winning pupils at the GTTP conference discussed how the growing trend for travelers to combine their business and leisure trips (“Bleisure travel”) can attract more visitors and enhance the tourist experience in their respective countries. The students also explained their views on the role of sustainability and technology in supporting Bleisure tourism development.

The countries represented this year by the students and their accompanying teachers included: Brazil, China, France, Hong Kong, Hungary, India, Ireland, Jamaica, Kenya, Russia, South Africa, and Tanzania.

Student competition entrants research GTTP-assigned topics, which vary year to year. Working in teams, the students develop their skills in research, analytics, and communications, all of which are essential for a successful career in Travel & Tourism.

This competition is sponsored by the GTTP’s Global Partners and the Aldo Papone Endowment. In addition, Amadeus provided the conference facilities at its Executive Briefing Centre in Sophia Antipolis. Marriott International, another GTTP Global Partner, provided meals and hotel rooms at Le Méridien, Nice. The GTTP Global Partners Amex, dnata, Eurostar, HRG, Hertz and Travelport sponsored tables at this year’s event awards dinner.

Angelica Mkok, Head of Corporate Social Responsibility, Amadeus IT Group, commented: “Amadeus is proud to continue sponsoring the GTTP global educational program in travel and tourism. Supporting young people in their personal and professional development within this industry is a key priority for Amadeus. We enjoyed hosting again the Global Travel and Tourism Partnership annual awards ceremony and hearing inspiring ideas on Bleisure travel from this year’s finalists.”


Hemma Varma, Senior Manager, Social Impact & Global Responsibility Europe, Marriott International, said: “The work being done by GTTP is significantly helping to ensure thousands of students around the world are aware of the great opportunities our industry has to offer. We are happy to continue our tradition of supporting programs like the GTTP global educational program in travel in tourism.  With 1 in 10 jobs tied to the hospitality industry worldwide, GTTP is helping to ensure a bright, fulfilling career path for many, and a pipeline of talent for our hotels.”


Michel Taride, Chair of the GTTP Advisory Board and Group President of Hertz International, said: “Many congratulations to this year’s GTTP student research winners, who prepared fascinating case studies on the opportunities for Bleisure tourism in their home country and the role that sustainability and technology plays in this area. GTTP has had an unwavering commitment over the past two decades to attract bright stars such as these young people to the travel and tourism industry to secure its future development.”


Nancy Needham, Executive Director, GTTP, added: “The students did an excellent job this year. The core mission of GTTP is to expose young people to the many different kinds of professional careers offered by the Travel & Tourism Industry. By changing the student research topic each year, we also introduce students to issues and trends affecting the industry and the people who work in it. We could not do all this without the involvement and support of the industry leaders who guide GTTP.”

The GTTP, established in 1996, currently operates in Brazil, Canada, China, France, Hong Kong, Hungary, India, Ireland, Jamaica, Kenya, Philippines, Russia, South Africa, Tanzania, and United Kingdom. Some 467,000 students participated in the GTTP. School systems provide teachers and classrooms. Approximately 1,500 local and international companies share their expertise with teachers and students and provide financial and in-kind support.

The international industry leaders currently supporting the GTTP are Amadeus, American Express, Carlson Wagonlit Travel, dnata, Enterprise Holdings, Eurostar, The Hertz Corporation, Hogg Robinson Group, KDS, Marriott International, and Travelport. Their executives serve on GTTP’s Advisory Board.

About GTTP

The Global Travel and Tourism Partnership is an industry philanthropic initiative to foster future talent and tackle the global skills shortage. The GTTP educates secondary and tertiary school students about careers in Travel and Tourism at a time when they are making career and education choices. The GTTP works in 15 countries in Europe, Africa, East Asia and North and South America. It serves some 667,000 students in more than 4,600 schools. For more about GTTP visit or Facebook.

The GTTP Helped Me To Find My Way in Life,
by Anastasia Kovinskaia, a GTTP 2013 Student Winner

Anastasia Kovinskaia graduated from Moscow School 1228 in 2015 and is a student at Moscow State University.  Below, Anastasia recounts her experiences with the GTTP.

Anastasia (right) and team partner Anna Kirillina


In 2013 I had the chance to participate in the Global Travel and Tourism Partnership Research Conference in Monaco where, as a winning national team, we had the honor to represent my country on an international level.

There were a lot of participants from different parts of the world: Great Britain, Hungary, Canada, China, Hong Kong, Ireland, Jamaica, Kenya, South Africa and Brazil.

The GTTP 2013 Russia team explored how enthusiasts in Kolumna, a city about 100 km (60 miles) from Moscow, are working to restore and re-introduce “Kolumna Pastilla,” a popular Russian delicacy invented in Kolumna in the 1700s that almost faded away in the 1900s.


Pastilla combines apples, honey or sugar, sometimes egg whites, and nuts and fruits.

The topic of the competition and of the conference was Culinary Tourism. We had to write a case, and that was not as easy as it seemed because we had studied the subject of our project in all aspects, had analyzed information and had prepared our presentation (see photos about Kolumna and Pastilla). We were extremely happy and proud to become the winning team.

Our award was participation in the amazing annual GTTP student/teacher conference, which lasted just 5 days but was enough to change me a lot. I made a lot of friends and still keep in touch with them. We were able to share the love of our countries with each other.

On the last day we had a gala dinner where we were able to meet Global Partners from the world’s leading corporations and to learn about their ways to success. Global Partners gladly communicated with us, answering our questions and showing interest in our projects. It was really great that they were sincerely interested in helping us expand our horizons and develop new skills.

The GTTP conference allowed me to understand the cultural values ​​of different countries, and better understand mentality of other nations. This experience had a great influence on me because I was able to feel myself as part of the world. I understood that the interaction of different people and cultures is very important and necessary for our modern society. People should be tolerant with each other.

Every country, every nation has its own unique and unrepeatable history and it’s important that people from other countries respect it and wish to become closer. Travel and Tourism is an extremely effective way to achieve this goal, and governments have to interact and be in progress together, helping each other promote culture, ideals, and values and bring people together. And I understood that I wanted to contribute to it.

In meeting with Global Partners – successful and influential people, teachers and students from other countries, adopting their experience, discovering something new, I realized that it is possible to be a part of this system, and that is closely connected to my interest in politics and belief in its ability to use “soft power” and be a means of mutual understanding, so people could live in peace.

That was how my participation in the GTTP conference helped me make a choice of the next level of education and my professional career. So after graduating  I entered the Department of World Politics at Moscow State University.

The Monaco Conference helped me understand what I really want to achieve in life. I have been enriched by new knowledge and learnt a lot about cultural heritage of different nations. GTTP helped me to find my way in life and I am really thankful to organizers and sponsors for this awesome opportunity.

The Fun of Being a Judge at the GTTP Russia Student Competition, by Yulia Khivantseva, HR Manager, CWT Russia

Yulia Khivantseva, HR Manager, CWT Russia, at the GTTP Russia Student Research Competition to commemorate the GTTP’s 20th Anniversary

On Jan 26th this year, my boss, Natalia Morozova, General Manager for CWT Russia, forwarded me a letter with the subject “GTTP Russia 20th Anniversary event February 16 and 17” with her comment: “FYI, let’s talk later.”

The subject was represented by a chain of emails that started from the one by Dr. Nancy Needham to GTTP Board Members (among whom was CWT Head of Responsible Business Françoise Grumberg) about the GTTP 20th anniversary event in Moscow. At this event run by GTTP Russia, students would be given a challenge and a limited amount of time to develop a viable business concept related to Heritage Tourism. She was looking for support from GTTP Industry Partner employees to serve as volunteer advisors to the students as they developed their ideas into a concept paper on the first day and to judge the teams and select the winners on the second.

As it often happens, Nancy’s e-mail found its way through corporate communication channels first to Anne Esling,  EMEA HR Head for CWT, then to Walter Ruggli, CWT Business Head for Switzerland and Eastern Europe, then to Natalia Morozova, CWT GM for Russia and ended up in my mail box.

I am HR head for CWT in Russia and at that moment I was swamped with end of year activities: performance appraisals, goals settings, compensation reviews.

Never had I thought the email that looked like more work than fun would develop into a wonderful experience of meeting great people and taking part in a great event.

Step one was to get some understanding of what was that required of us. I got in touch with Dr. Nina Kuznetsova, who represents GTTP in Russia, and learnt more about the Global and Travel Tourism Partnership, a multi-country educational program to introduce students to career opportunities in Travel & Tourism with half a million students in thirteen countries, supported and sponsored by leading international companies – Carlson Wagonlit Travel, Amadeus, American Express, Delta Airlines, dnata, Enterprise Holdings, Eurostar, The Hertz Corporation, Hogg Robinson Group, KDS, Starwood Hotels & Resorts, and Travelport

At the First Stage of the GTTP Research Competition students would work in teams of five under very tight deadlines in order to develop and present a solution for the tournament challenge related to Heritage Tourism. The challenge would be revealed on the first day of the competition (February 16th), and teamwork would start.  The students would develop their solutions (ideas and concept papers) during the rest of the day.  On the 2nd day (February 17th) teams would present their solutions to a panel of judges and their peers.

Nancy and Nina wanted some volunteer – experts from CWT for Day 1 and judges for Day 2.

I spoke with our CWT Russia Leadership Team about the event asked for volunteers. I presented it as a wonderful opportunity for our employees to go out there and share their knowledge and expertise – a great development opportunity, indeed.

Since Moscow was going through a bout of ‘flu some people who volunteered fell victims to the illness, but they were promptly replaced with others.

On Feb 16 our team of 10 people arrived at the event.  Olga Dolgova, Elena Solovieva, Alla Lapina, Natalia Nedashkovskaya, Anastasia Andreeva, Olga Fedorova – from CWT Travel Services,  Nadezhda Sizova from CWT M&E,  Yulia Agashina from CWT HR, and  Albina Golikova from CWT legal were right on time to share their expertise and knowledge with GPPT students.

We were met by Nina, who gave a warm welcome and briefing. It was also nice to get to know our fellow travelers from Travelport.

We split in teams of two and met up with students.

Personally there were three things that struck me as interesting: 1) real appreciation of local heritage places by all participants 2) not very clear understanding of challenges to put some projects into practice (I am saying it only because I am over 40 and not a dreamer any longer 🙂 ) and 3) difference in business acumen between school and university students.

Nadezhda Sizova, CWT Russia Sales Manager, advising student competition participants

Nadezhda Sizova, CWT Russia Sales Manager, said:

“I was invited as a Business Travel Expert to help students with projects, share my opinions and ideas. Before taking part in the event I was not sure why rich and successful people do teaching.

Now I can say that it was a wings-growing experience. Open, positive, talented kids are our future. There were a lot of great projects. The one I liked most – tour of Russia’s Caucasus for people with hearing difficulties.”

Anastasia Andreeva, CWT Russia Travel Services Outplant Superviser

Anastasia Andreeva, CWT Russia Travel Services Outplant Superviser shared:

“I understood the objective of the event as identification of young talent, and an attempt make young people think and act independently.

I totally loved the way it was organized, and of course I loved the kids.”

On day 2, three CWT reps joined the jury panel and spent the whole day reading through the briefs, observing live presentations.

We had a difficult time selecting the best three, as all were great.

All in all it was really positive experience for us. We loved every minute of it. By Feb 18th everyone in CWT Russia knew about the event.

And I am sure that for any future event Nina will have to do a casting among CWT volunteers.

GTTP Interview with Kingston College student Annabelle Lynch on her Hertz work placement

By Martin O’Brien
Former Programme Leader – Service Industries Kingston College*

Owing to our continued and supportive connection with the Global Travel and Tourism Partnership, Kingston College and Hertz Car Rental have been able to offer fantastic work placement opportunities to seven of the College’s students earlier this year.

Students worked in different departments of the Hertz car rental operations at London Heathrow Airport, with the support of staff members, and the feedback has been very positive. Kingston College asked Annabelle Lynch (Level 2 Travel & Tourism) what she thought of the placement and we were thrilled with her responses:

Annabelle serving at Hertz London Heathrow Instant Return

What did you think of the placement?

“It was a really good placement with friendly people. The support from the staff members was excellent with constant guidance that helped me in the week.”

What has the placement taught you?

“The main things that I have learnt relate to customer service and the importance of where a business is located. Throughout the week my confidence also grew.”

Annabelle works with the team at Hertz Instant Return to inspect rental cars on their return.

Would you recommend this placement to other students?

“Absolutely. I really enjoyed it, especially working in the returns department checking the cars that came back in.”

Anything else?

“I would like to say thank you to Hertz for hosting me in this placement, it was a great experience and I would love to have the opportunity to work there in the future”

Students have been given the opportunity to work in a number of different departments and have an insight into how a real travel and tourism business operates. Our students now have a greater understanding of how customer service can affect a business and the importance of establishing relationships with customers.

Kingston College would once again like to thank Hertz and the GTTP for their continued support and dedication. It is opportunities like this that enrich the journey of a student and helps make them more employable when they leave education.

* About Kingston College

Based in South West London, UK, Kingston College is a major provider of further education for post-secondary students. Its Service Department offers Level 1-3 travel and tourism courses aimed at students aged 16-19. The goal of the college’s work experience program is to expose students to a travel and tourism related working environment and to work as part of a professional team.

Kingston College has been affiliated with the Global Travel and Tourism Partnership for several years, and two of its students represented the UK at the 2012 GTTP Student/Teacher Conference in Monaco. The College works closely with the GTTP UK Director Claire Steiner to maintain their industry knowledge and relevance for the students.

GTTP Opened My Eyes To Many Travel and Tourism Career Choices, by 2010 Student Research Award Winner, Gemma Haywood

Google translation

Gemma Haywood was a UK winner of the Global Travel and Tourism Partnership Research Award in 2010 while a student at Cornwall College St Austell*. She and her fellow UK winner Josie Greatorex presented at the GTTP’s annual student/teacher conference, which was held in Munich that year.

In this interview, Gemma shares a taste of the adventures she’s been up to since then, including exciting travel in South America and now pursuing a Tourism Management degree at Bournemouth University. She also explains how the GTTP sparked her interest in travel and tourism as a career.

Gemma volunteering on an Open Day at the University of Bournemouth, 2015.

Gemma, what have you been up to since the GTTP student/teacher conference in 2010?

On returning from the conference, I finished my diploma in Travel and Tourism with distinctions and completed my Duke of Edinburgh Award Gold.

After this, I decided I wanted to explore and see the world so I packed my backpack for South America! It was such an amazing experience –  I was lucky enough to stay with a host family in Costa Rica to learn Spanish, volunteer with street children in Cusco, climb a volcano in Chile and visit the Iguaçu falls in Argentina, meeting so many lovely people along the way.  I then packed my bags once more and I am now studying Tourism Management at Bournemouth University.

How did the GTTP help influence your career choice?

Greatly! I have always had an interest in travel but the GTTP opened my eyes to all of the different possibilities available within the industry that I had never come across before. The conference helped me decide that I wanted to go to university to pursue these possibilities and find a job that would allow me to meet and work with people of different nationalities and cultures; a part of the GTTP conference I very much enjoyed.

What are you hoping to do once you have finished your degree?

Good question! My university course has been so varied and I have discovered many areas within tourism that I am interested in, such as Human Resource Management, Destination Management, Disaster Management…the list goes on!!. I would like to start gaining as much experience as possible and hope to find something I truly enjoy doing. I would like to continue my learning of Spanish also, as I feel that being able to speak another language is important in tourism.

How do you think you have changed and have your travel experiences helped?

Since 2010 I have definitely become more confident and I believe this is down to both the GTTP and travelling. These experiences have allowed me to mix with lots of different people and get involved with a whole range of activities, bringing me out of my shell and making me more open minded. These qualities are now contributing to the enjoyment and success of my university experience as I am participating in many activities and taking advantage of all the great opportunities on offer!

Gemma Haywood (right) with Fruzsina Csonka (Hungary) in Southampton, 2014.
Below, Gemma with fellow winners at the 2010 GTTP student/teacher conference in Munich.

Are you still in touch with any of your GTTP friends from Munich?

Yes! It surprised us all how we only spent four days together, yet bonded so well! Fruzsina Csonka, from Hungary, came to England last year so I was fortunate enough to be able to meet with her again which was fabulous!  As for everyone else, we would love a GTTP reunion, however with everyone scattered across the globe it is too difficult. It is nice to see what everyone is up to and how well people are doing via Facebook though.

What advice would you give to yourself back in 2010?

Don’t be so scared! I felt I was quite shy before which stopped me from doing many things, but luckily my teachers pushed me (nicely!) to go for it and I’m so glad they did because it has made me realise that there are so many great things out there to grab….all you need is a little confidence!

Gemma at the top of the Villarrica volcano, Chile.

* The Cornwall College Group offers Level 2 – 5 qualifications in Travel and Tourism for post secondary school students and has been affiliated with the GTTP for several years to help ensure that academic programs remain relevant for future employers.

Sarah Bruce, teacher at Cornwall College St Austell, said: “The GTTP research project has been a fabulous way for us to make contact with people in the Travel and Tourism industry. It has given the learners the opportunity to develop their skills outside of the classroom and to get a real taste of the varied world of Global Travel and Tourism. It enhances our teaching and delivery of the subject as it gives it gives the learners first hand experience of what it would be like to work in this sector – making the subject more ‘real.’  It is a fabulous project to be part of.”

Extending our Responsible Business reach through Education – GTTP Interview with Françoise Grumberg, Carlson Wagonlit Travel

Françoise Grumberg, CWT

GTTP Board Member Françoise Grumberg, Vice President Global Responsible Business, Carlson Wagonlit Travel, explains the rewards of working with the Global Travel and Tourism Partnership.

Why is Carlson Wagonlit Travel (CWT) involved with the Global Travel and Tourism Partnership?

We have a saying at our company: we operate with one foot in today, and one foot in tomorrow. We believe in being a responsible business, including seeking out ways to help the next generation expand their professional horizons and develop their career mobility by engaging in activities that focus on education and entrepreneurship.

Knowing that, we believe Carlson Wagonlit Travel has found a great partner in the GTTP.  The reason we joined the partnership is simple. We all have strong faith in the potential of young people. We consider it our duty to provide the skills they need. Together we can raise the interest and aspirations of the youth, especially in places where travel and tourism are vital to the economy.

How is CWT contributing to the GTTP?

We are contributing through funding parts of various initiatives. These include the development of an online learning management system, the creation and promotion of a LinkedIn group for GTTP alumni, and a new module in the Passport to the World Curriculum – Responsible and Sustainable Tourism – which CWT presented and is supported by the GTTP board, currently under development.

The objectives of the Responsible and Sustainable Tourism module are to provide students with a foundation for understanding green, sustainable tourism, as well as providing them with best practice examples and case studies. We hope to attract students not only to a profession in the travel industry, but also to make them aware of the importance of responsible business in our sector, right from the beginning of their careers.

What value does GTTP bring to the industry from your point of view?

The GTTP took a really smart approach to get young people interested in travel and tourism as a career. The program was developed with business partners. It makes students aware of our global industry, but also connects how travel and tourism make a difference locally. It also develops valuable skills that can easily translate into careers in other related industries.

GTTP offers a channel for young people to better equip themselves as they aspire to find or create opportunities to improve their and their families’ lives. In addition, GTTP provides a forum for organizations to get together and share good practices while working together towards a common good.

Do you have a fond GTTP moment that you’d like to share?

It’s wonderful to hear student’s stories – learning about how GTTP opened doors for them to learn more about the travel and tourism industry and professional opportunities that they can have. One of my favorite memories is watching some of those same students get recognized in GTTP board events for projects they had created during their GTTP curriculum. Seeing their proud, happy faces as they receive the recognition is truly priceless.

What’s next for CWT regarding the GTTP?

We’re excited to have the opportunity to create even more awareness, and look forward to sharing some of the insights and experiences that come from our work with GTTP in the coming months.

Obtain Google Translation of this article.

How the GTTP Has Changed My Life by 2010 Research Award Winner, Sandra Feng

Sandra Feng was a research award winner of the Global Travel and Tourism Partnership in 2010, while studying at Ningbo Polytechnic in Zhejiang of her home country, China. This led to exciting new chapters in her life’s journey, as Sandra describes in this guest blog. Here she recounts how her GTTP experiences have made a strong impact on her life, both personally and professionally.

Sandra Feng pictured at the Langham Place Hotel in Hong Kong, where she serves as Customer Service Ambassador and a trainer for new employees

Ever since 2010 I’ve seen great changes in my life, which were influenced by the Global Travel and Tourism Partnership. I was definitely a very shy girl before I attended the annual student/teacher GTTP conference that year. I was kind of seen as a bookworm. My study performance was good, but I was not good at communicating with different kinds of people, and while I did try to have a social life, I had to work really hard too.

Fortunately, in 2010 my teacher, Ms. Eve Lianping Ren, notified me that I was one of the girls representing China to attend the conference, which was being held in Munich Germany.  My teammate Manli Chen and I presented on “Green Tourism in China – In Search of Harmony between Nature and Mankind.”  In this case study project we identified the features and forms of Green Tourism being practiced in China.

I am now far more outgoing and confident than I used to be, both because of everything I was learnt and experienced during the conference, and also from all the friends I have made during the event. The most important thing is that it has given me is a clear direction for my career dream in a hotel.

The year after I joined the conference, I was granted an opportunity to further my study in Hong Kong due to the inspiration of my teacher Ms Eve Ren as well as both GTTP directors Prof. Hanqin Zhang (GTTP China) and Ms Chammy Lau (GTTP Hong Kong).  In 2011, I was admitted as a top-up degree student in the School of Professional Education and Executive Development – a continuation unit of the Hong Kong Polytechnic University – to pursue my bachelor degree major in Hotel Management.

Honestly, only a very small group of students from mainland China, especially studying in the Higher Diploma vocation level such as myself, could be accepted by the University in Hong Kong. This is mainly due to the difference of instruction in China compared to that of Hong Kong.  Most of the students in mainland China might not have had the opportunity to use or to practice their English in their school.  I found myself very lucky that I could broaden my horizons through the participation in GTTP conference and to be able to further my study in Hong Kong after gaining the GTTP research award.

During my study in Hong Kong, I was awarded a number of scholarships and was able to graduate from the school with a result of credit pass.  In addition, through the local connection of Ms. Chammy Lau, I was able to get a placement internship in one of the 5-star hotels in Hong Kong, which further enhanced my employability upon graduation.

Now, I am working in Langham Place Hotel in Hong Kong as a Customer Service Ambassador, already for 2 years. The inspiration, devotion, innovation and the opportunity given to me by the GTTP have led me here and I am now honoured to be considered to be the best employee in my hotel.  My professional and good service attitudes have been well complimented upon by the hotel guests. I have now become a senior girl here, performing a role of a trainer for new colleagues.

All in all, I treasure the opportunity to study and to work in Hong Kong.  I will try my best to work hard and gain more experiences from the work in the hotel. Moreover, I will not stop learning the new things to refresh myself and I believe it will make a big difference for both of my work and life in the future!  Thank you very much for the opportunity given by GTTP.  My life has been changed entirely.

Pictured left to right:
– GTTP China Director Dr. Hanqin Qui Zhan, Professor of International Tourism at Hong Kong Polytechnic University
– Manli Chen and Sandra Feng, former students of Ningbo Polytechnic Zhejiang, China and the 2010 GTTP Research Award Winners from China
– Charles Petrucelli, GTTP Founder and Advisor to the GTTP Board
– Chammy Lau, GTTP Hong Kong Director
– Eve Lianping Ren, teacher, Ningbo Polytechnic Zhejiang, China

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