Hospitality & Tourism
Hospitality and Tourism is the business of 21st century, according to World Travel & Tourism Council (1997). It was predicted that three powerful industries will dominate the world economy namely, Telecommunications, Information Technology & Tourism.
Tourism, as an industry, is widely gaining acceptance in Nigeria. From a tour round the country, it was observed that all state capitals and strong cultural and economic cities are enjoying well structured and sophisticated designs.
In the last one decade in Nigeria the likes of Sheraton Hotels, Nicon Hilton, Federal Palace, Eko Hotel and several notable hotels were the big players, but today the likes of Protea Hotels have not only proven to be making waves, but are ready to take over the market and several other two and three star hotels are now strategizing and embarking on renovation to be able to move up to the challenges that are on-going.
No wonder, hotel and tourism management that used to be the business of the academically non-performers then is now gaining wide acceptance as people travel abroad to study various courses in hotel, tourism, transport and management system. Today, tourism has developed in scope and direction, away from traditional activities from the sunshine sand and sea holidays to a wide range of new activities such as cultural tourism, adventure tourism, sports and leisure activities and eco-tourism.
Travel & Tourism
Travel and tourism represents a broad range of related industries. The growth of these industries has opened up many new job opportunities for graduates in areas such as:
• travel agencies
• tour companies
• tourist attractions
• leisure, recreation and sport
• cultural industries
It is interesting to realize that in 1997, travel and tourism provided 10.5% of the total world employment, with up to 25% of all employment in some places such as the Caribbean. It has been estimated that, by 2007, more than 100 million people world-wide will be employed in this sector. With this, tourism is now seen to be of importance to most countries of the world.
Today, many young people are opening eyes into the new discovery dubbed hospitality and tourism business and several courses have also been developed even to post-graduate level to suite the academic aspect of the new business.
There are several courses available in the following areas
for hotels and restaurant management:
• international hospitality management
• hotel and catering management
for travel and tourism:
• tourism studies
• travel and tourism
There are also joint degrees where it is possible to study combinations of courses such as tourism and hospitality, tourism and leisure, hospitality and marketing. Most undergraduate courses (HND/BSc/BA) will include a period of work experience as part of the course, varying in length from 6 months to one year. This work experience is seen to be a central part of the course, where the students get the opportunity to practice what they have learned in college or university. Employers also see great value in this work experience when considering the employment of graduates.
Given the international nature of these industries, another valuable part of any course is the study of languages.
Most courses in hospitality and tourism provide access to language courses, either as core components or as options.
Courses at Masters Level are becoming increasingly important in tourism and hospitality. These Masters level courses are useful to two groups of people:
– those who have completed a degree course in a subject other than hospitality or tourism, but who are looking at ways of getting employment in the industry;
– those who have a degree or sub-degree qualification in hospitality or tourism together with significant management experience within the hospitality or tourism industries and who wish to develop themselves to a higher level or to seek a more senior position in industry.
There are many Masters Degree courses in Hospitality Management, Hotel and Catering Management and Tourism Management in universities and colleges in the UK.
In addition to the above courses, there are also more specialized Masters Degree Courses in Tourism covering areas such as Cultural Tourism, Tourism Marketing, Tourism Planning, Museum Management, Heritage Management, Cultural Tourism and Sustainable Tourism.