Hospitality is at the heart of the UK’s economic infrastructure. Even the smallest towns and villages require pubs, restaurants, hotels and entertainment venues of some shape or form. Almost every sector and business in the country is touched by the hospitality industry somehow, catering to both locals and tourists and contributing billions of pounds to the UK economy annually, making it one of the largest and most important industries in Britain.
Courses in hospitality teach an in-depth level of knowledge across areas such as travel, tourism and catering. They are becoming a fundamental aspect of employment, as increasing competition in the job market demands more from young people looking to enter the world of work.
This guide will provide a review of modern hospitality education, with an insight from Newcastle College into how they help students to become work-ready.
An increasingly popular route into employment is through vocational education. Getting real work experience is part of that, so when T-Levels are introduced next year, work placements will form a compulsory part of every course.
To give students an idea of the realities involved in the industry, they will be required to organise events and partnerships with local hotels.
Having experience of the work place prior to employment is advantageous in potential recruits, as a UCAS study found that two thirds of employers favour graduates with vocational experience. It can be vital for nurturing an early understanding of business culture and it also demonstrates initiative.
Learning from the Best
Often hospitality education is led by industry experts, with invaluable knowledge of the sector from their own careers and experience. Not only can they offer their own expertise, but they can bring in guest lecturers from the industry to offer masterclasses in their specialisms.
Guest lecturers are regularly featured in the weekly schedule of the students. Research has found that this helps them build important connections between their on-site learning and the real world, with the guest speaker able to offer a different perspective on the subject.
Learning in an Ideal Environment.
By introducing students to the work environment early in their careers, they familiarise themselves with the nature of the job. Students at Newcastle College can enjoy learning their trade in five industry standard kitchens, and a recent investment of £45,000 secured a new patisserie kitchen, gaining them Centre of Excellence status for Food and Beverage and Patisserie and Confectionary with Gold accreditation.
The college was praised in the latest Newcastle College Ofsted report, as the findings highlighted the value of partnerships with employers and the quality of facilities available. By learning in a simulated industry environment, students enhance the quality of their studies with practical experience.
Inter-student competitions often take place at the college, as students get the chance to demonstrate their abilities.
By working under pressure, the students gain an insight into the hectic nature of the typical hospitality kitchen. Through the competitions, they gain the skills necessary to work at their best ability even whilst under a tight deadline.
Showcases are often extended to a regional, or national stage. Students can put their vocational skills to the test, acting as testament for the value of hospitality education in developing future industry talents.
As the younger generations continue enter the world of work, hospitality environments flourish and embrace new leaders in the field. If you’re thinking of getting into the hospitality trade, look up courses at your local college for experiences which will prepare you for a demanding career and help you stand out from the crowd.