The Travel & Tourism Industry is Updating & Evolving and So Must We

How exam preparation can help learners develop employability skills?

About the project

What is the project about?

The Travel & Tourism sector is constantly evolving and changing especially since the impact and effects of the Pandemic.

We have contacts that have benefitted the students over the past years e.g. our relationship and our student visits to The Stansted Airport Aerozone Training Centre and our annual visit to British Airways Training Centre for our cabin crew assessments. We’ve also established visits and relations with Stamford Tourist Information Centre, South Kesteven District Council and local Hospitality providers that have led to work experience placements. Past Guest speakers have included recruitment and assessment days/ talks with Thomas Cook, Easyjet, Jet2, Travel Counsellors and Concorde Hotel Management Programme. Due to the impact of the Covid-19 Pandemic, the travel industry has been severely affected. Resulting in job losses, furlough and organisations collapsing. At the minute college is not the priority of many of these organisations.

Over the last 2 years we have not been able to keep up our good relations and in some cases lost them completely with the above sectors.

My Focus is to re-establish relationships with some past travel organisations and to establish some new relationships that will directly impact, benefit and enhance the units we deliver and the learner experience. I also plan to gain an understanding on how the industry has evolved and what key skills organisations are looking for so that we can incorporate these into our teaching and assessing. This way we are equipping our students not only with a qualification but examples and skills required for industry employment.

I plan to do this by connecting with some well recognised organisations within the travel & tourism industry., gaining new resources for units, finding out key skills required for working within those organisations, securing some valuable guest speakers and visits that will provide direct relevant unit content. I also hope to gain invitations to specific related events in the travel calendar e.g. careers fairs.

Joint application

Will incorporate the above and involve industry days with Local Tour Operators at head office to spend time with key departments e.g. C&M Travel Recruitment, Easyjet and potentially Thomas Cook OTA newly opened at Peterborough and Signature, to ascertain any changes of ways of working that could influence curriculum. This will also provide invaluable updating of content knowledge for teaching staff for a variety of units we deliver.

Partnerships will also be explored for apprenticeships / work experience opportunities e.g. Discover Rutland.

What is the benefit to students?

The benefit to the student will be the updating of resources – by new resources secured / content to create new resources.

  • Access to guest speakers / visits that can provide direct unit content.
  • Access to careers fairs / recruitment talks that can help with progression
  • Career aspiration and access to job opportunities that they not have considered
  • Possibly / hopefully work experience placements
  • Joint project will hopefully also provide the opportunity for progression / feeder organisations

Aims and desirable outcomes

  • changing / updating our current resources – this may take longer than the project itself as summer may be required to add to the resource bank / create new resources based on information obtained.
  • Sharing of information with the travel team so that they too can access information and resources gained
  • Planing of the curriculum may change based on our contents – this might mean changing units or delivering units at specific times so that visits / guest speakers can contribute / be implemented.
  • Unit selection may alter to meet employment needs of the industry
  • Long term partnerships that can contribute to our ongoing professional development (dual Professionalism)
  • I hope to secure industry placement day / visits for staff – for CPD purposes.

How Charmaine Westerdale & Jen Littlefair are measuring the project

  • Resources gained
  • Guest Speakers Secured
  • Future Visits Secured
  • Feedback from Learners
  • Content of learner work reflecting industry
  • Progression of students into HE / Travel related work roles on completion of course based on knowledge / skills gained from completion of project.
  • Joint Project will also hopefully see the securing of a partnership / apprenticeship / work experience places secured.
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