The Institute of Hospitality’s Learners of the Year were rewarded for attaining the highest marks in their final exams. Their achievements were recognised during the Institute of Hospitality Awards Dinner at Westminster Kingsway College (WKC) on 13 June 2016.
Georgia Georgantopoulou Level 3 Learner of the Year
Georgia took the Institute’s Level 3 Diploma in Hospitality and Tourism Management . Georgia is working as a BaxterStorey team leader at law firm, Reed Smith, London. She says: “I’ve always thought that to further a career means hard work and continuous learning. BaxterStorey gave me the opportunity through their Leadership Academy to study for the course. It was a great and challenging year at WKC. I had the chance to further my knowledge, learn new things, challenge myself, meet new people and finally see my hard work rewarded. Working and studying at the same time is not easy but the benefits are worth all the effort. I’m utterly thrilled to be Learner of the Year for 2016 and I wish to continue learning, improving and progressing within the hospitality industry.”
Simon Hansen Joint Level 4 Learner of the Year
Simon took the Institute’s Level 4 Diploma in Advanced Hospitality and Tourism Management. Simon Hansen has been a lecturer in hospitality and catering at Kendal College in Cumbria for ten years, and previously worked in fine-dining restaurants across the country, gaining rosettes and recognition for his skills. He will be part of the newly-expanded teaching team at Kendal, delivering Institute of Hospitality qualifications. Simon says: “I was encouraged to continue my own learning at Kendal while working. I was able to balance work, my passion for football and coaching local teams, and studying with lots of support from my tutor Suzanne Horner, who has been inspiring and supportive throughout. I hope to inspire my own students to understand that learning is for life and is something that should be embraced and not feared.”
Jay Barnard Joint Level 4 Learner of the Year
Jay took the Institute’s Level 4 Diploma in Advanced Hospitality and Tourism Management. Jay is a BaxterStorey hospitality manager at the British Medical Association, London. He studied the Institute of Hospitality Level 4 Diploma at WKC as part of BaxterStorey’s Leadership Academy programme. He says: “Half way through the course I was promoted to hospitality manager at BMA. My first task was to re-launch the hospitality offer. I was excited to be able to showcase some new concepts to add the wow factor to events. This included using a vintage cake cart – which can be added to any event. As part of the course we needed to look at different aspects of the business and then present our proposals to senior members of the BaxterStorey team. Mine was on visual merchandising. I look forward to many more great years and opportunities with Baxterstorey in this exciting industry!”
There are many ways to work your way to the top in the hospitality industry. People1st, the sector skills council for the industry, estimates there is a growing number of vacancies for skilled managers in hospitality and tourism, and projects the need for an additional 66,000 managers by 2022.
People1st’s numbers confirm there is plenty of scope for job advancement if candidates can offer the right hospitality management and leadership skills. The infographic (right) acknowledges that the hospitality vacancies exist, but also shows that employers are finding some deficiencies in their employees’ skills sets. On-the-job training and further (FE) or higher education (HE) are two ways to address this skills gap.
For job seekers who are interested in obtaining some hospitality education, Caterer.com has clearly outlined the types of educational qualifications – including Institute of Hospitality qualifications – budding hospitality managers can obtain in the UK to ensure they have the skills sought by employers. From apprenticeships for the youngest learners and NVQs to bachelor’s degrees and Institute qualifications, there is something to suit learners of every age and every budget.
To locate and apply for a hospitality apprenticeship in your area, visit .GOV.UK and search for ‘hospitality’ followed by your post code. The results will show businesses seeking hospitality apprentices.
The educational information in this article can get you started on the road to a rewarding hospitality career.
Graduates received their certificates from Arthur de Haast FIH, chairman of the Institute’s Executive Council. He said: “I was most impressed with the young graduates who have clearly all worked so hard. It was also great to see them enjoying themselves as a team.”
Joseph Chong FIH, general manager of the Peninsula Shanghai Complex, added: “Young hotel professionals in China covet an international accreditation, and these challenging courses are tailored to their long-term development needs. The Peninsula Shanghai is proud to have created this winning partnership with the Institute of Hospitality and IVE.”
If you or your organisation would like to learn more about the educational opportunities with the Institute of Hospitality, contact Anne Harper, Head of Awarding Body, at: firstname.lastname@example.org or ring +44 (0)208 661 4925.