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Tourism internship program to be introduced at Jordanian universities

Jordan: Wednesday, December 22 - 2010 @ 09:18

The graduation ceremony was held at the dean’s office of QRITH, Dr. Mohammad Waheeb, and attended by the Hashemite University President, H.E. Prof. Ruwaida Al-Ma’aytah, and the Ministry of Tourism and Antiquities representative Ms. Ansam Malkawi, and JITOA Board member H.E Mr. Munir Nassar, and USAID/JTDP representatives, and H.E Dr. Abedelrahim Hamdan the Hashemite University Vice President for administrative and humanitarian affairs, in addition to QRITH academic and administrative staff.

“Practical training in industry is an excellent way for students to apply their theoretical knowledge and develop the soft skills needed to do well, particularly in the tourism sector where being able to communicate with tourists and a hospitable attitude are vital to delivering the high quality of service that Jordan needs to offer to be internationally competitive,” said H.E. Mr. Zeid Goussous, Minister of Tourism and Antiquities. He added, “The tourism internship program serves the sector’s vision of implementing comprehensive plans to develop tourism in a sustainable way and thus help drive economic development in the Kingdom, as tourism is one of the largest industries in Jordan.”

“The Hashemite University seeks to develop this vital sector (tourism) through opening institutes specialized in tourism, such as the Queen Rania Institute of Tourism and Cultural Heritage which offers three tourism related programs,” said H.E. Prof. Ruwaida Al-Ma’aytah, the Hashemite University President. “Our aim is to supply the workforce with specialized academic skills, and in turn we seek to gain for our students the practical experience that they need for their future careers.”

“These internships will help young Jordanians who are studying hospitality to gain valuable practical experience as well as introducing them to the promising career opportunities that tourism can offer,” said Mr. Ibrahim Osta, USAID Jordan Tourism Development Project Chief of Party.

“This pilot project showed great success and the turnout was overwhelming. We are looking forward to expanding the project and implementing it in other universities other than QRITH institute to include more students and host organizations,” said Mr. Mohammad Samih, JITOA Chairman.

Preparations for the Tourism Management Internship Program began in October last year and it was agreed that the pilot program would be introduced at the Hashemite University. The USAID tourism project supported the design and development of the program and training materials and JITOA implemented the training. Eight students were accepted into the pilot program at Hashemite University and began the program with orientation and training by JITOA about the program and the tourism sector in general, along with courses in English for tourism, communication skills, business writing, tourism sector orientation, customer service and time management.

The students then began their practical training, at various tour operators and at an NGO that develops tourism trails. The program seeks to bridge the gap between students’ academic education and the practical skills that are needed by the tourism sector. Thus the new program helps young Jordanians who are studying for a career in hospitality and tourism get acquainted with the industry and ready themselves for working in the sector. The internships also give students the opportunity to prove themselves professionally and kick-start their career; some of the students who undertook the pilot internship were recruited by the companies that trained them.

Following the success of the pilot program, it is planned to implement the Tourism Management Internship Program at all universities and colleges in Jordan that offer degrees and certificates in tourism and hospitality.

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Wednesday, December 22- 2010 @ 9:18 UAE local time (GMT+4) Replication or redistribution in whole or in part is expressly prohibited without the prior written consent of Mediaquest FZ LLC.

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