Professionalism in the hospitality industry will be enhanced if there is engagement between hotels and training institutions, hoteliers agreed during the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding between Victoria University and Speke Group of Hotels. The MoU is intended to add value to the lifestyle & tourism sector in Uganda and East Africa.
The MoU, signed under the theme: ‘strengthening the hospitality industry in east africa', Victoria University will begin offering in-depth research oriented value addition to the hospitality and leisure industry in East Africa while Speke Group of Hotels will provide practical space upon which Victoria University students will easily and seamlessly gain industrial insights that could eventually result into soft skills and employment opportunity as well.
Anthony Chege the General Manager at Kampala Serena Hotel said there is lack of enough proper training and institutions that can focus on the development of skills in the hospitality industry. Plus the curriculum in most of the existing schools may not be well aligned with the needs of the industry.
“We are not adapting to the new changes that the industry faces. Times have come and changed. There is a need for engagement between the industry and and leaders of training institution.
The society also has not taken the career in the hotel industry as seriously as they should. Many times we select a career in the hotel industry when we have not got what we selected as first choice. Hotels are seen as not the best places to work. A hotel worker’s profile has not been raised in society.”
Greg Petzer, the General Manager - Speke Resort Munyonyo, one of the hotels which is part of the Speke Group of Hotels noted that as the hospitality develops, 'it is critical that we have students with the appropriate skills set to fill this gap.' "We believe that Victoria University will become a key role player in this regard." Petzer said.
Krishna N. Sharma, the Vice Chancellor of Victoria University, revealed that the University discovered that there is a gap between the hospitality industry and education system which also leads to wastage of resources.
“There is a couple of challenges facing higher vocational education which includes its positioning, insufficient industrial cooperation and marginalization which need to be squarely addressed.
Victoria University tourism and hospitality qualification is designed to provide highly specialized, competent and international recognized qualifications in a range of different sectors.
We impart knowledge, understanding and skills that our students need to prepare for employment. We expose our learners to effective internship and experiential learning. Our qualifications provide career development opportunities.” the Vice Chancellor said.
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