Businesses and tourism industry leaders joined teachers and pupils from schools all over Scotland to share their knowledge, experience and insights into the latest tourism trends and employment possibilities at the first Travel and Tourism Schools Conference in Glasgow yesterday.
The event, funded and hosted by Bannerman High School in Ballieston, Glasgow was organised by part-time Geography teacher, Lynn Alexander, who saw the potential for schools and the tourism industry to work more closely together to give teachers the most up to date knowledge and insights to deliver the National 5 Travel and Tourism curriculum, and to inspire the next generation of tourism professionals.
Speaking about the event, Lynn said, “From the conversations I was having with teachers, I wondered if I might organise something to support my fellow professionals and give them more knowledge about today’s tourism industry from professionals within the field. There is huge potential for education and industry to work more closely together to inspire and motivate our pupils to see the real possibilities and opportunities for pursuing tourism as a career of choice; there’s also a real willingness from the industry to do that. The sheer number of bookings we had from teachers in a relatively short space of time confirmed my suspicions. Staff in secondary schools are hungry for events like this that will support their delivery of the National 5 Travel and Tourism curriculum, create a real depth of understanding of Scotland’s tourism industry and improve employability prospects and indeed the skillset of Scotland’s secondary pupils.”
Marc Crothall, Chief Executive of the Scottish Tourism Alliance who addressed industry colleagues and schools at the event said; “Lynn is to be commended for taking it upon herself not only to organise this hugely successful event but in having the foresight to see the potential and the opportunities for Scotland’s next generation in what is now viewed as our country’s most important industry. This I hope will pave the way for industry and education to collaborate more closely and ensure that we are equipping Scotland’s next generation with the skills, knowledge and ambition to pursue a successful career in our industry.”
Speakers and guests on the panel session also included Peter Robertson, Manager of Barrhead Travel’s Glasgow Fort branch, Clare Stuart, Head of Training at Barrhead Travel and Fiona Matrundola from VisitScotland.