Student-led UWTSD hospitality conference will address industry challenges


24.03.2021

Final year BA (Hons) International Hotel Management students from the University of Wales Trinity Saint David (UWTSD) are holding an online hospitality conference on Friday March 26.

Final year BA (Hons) International Hotel Management students from the University of Wales Trinity Saint David (UWTSD) are holding an online hospitality conference on Friday March 26.

The Contemporary Themes in Hospitality 2021 conference will cover a selection of contemporary themes, from the potential of AI and technology within hospitality, to the way in which the pandemic has impacted the industry.

The conference has been organised by the students as part of their course and will be hosted by third year student Liviu Marius Cocosila, who has first-hand experience of the impact of Covid-19 on the industry. Before the pandemic hit, he was working successfully as a waiter and bartender while studying, but he was then furloughed before being made redundant. He is now working as a delivery driver and awaiting the opportunity to return to the hospitality industry after he graduates.

“I am looking forward to the conference,” he said. “As well as listening to the presentations, it will be an opportunity to congratulate all the students on their achievements, as it takes place on the last day of our course. The university focuses on preparing graduates for their careers, using a professional and strategic teaching process that covers both theoretical and practical aspects. I can assure new students they will receive the best possible teaching on this course.

“During my studies I have accumulated valuable information that will help me both professionally and personally. Even though at present this pandemic has affected the industry and my work within it, the information provided by the lecturers and the topics covered during the course will undoubtedly help me secure a future in the industry.”

Programme manager Dr Jayne Griffith-Parry says she was delighted with how the students have adapted to delivering the conference in an online format.

“As part of their Contemporary Themes within Hospitality module part of their assessment is to organise and deliver a student led conference,” she says. “This has been challenging within an online format and has called for far more detail and consideration compared to holding it within the university campus or at one of the Marriott hotels that our students have worked at during their industry placements.

 “This has led to the students not only learning the skills of presentation and conference content writing but also digital and technical skills, which will no doubt be invaluable to them going forward into their careers. This has been an amazing achievement for them all, and the seven who we will hear from on the day are only a representation of the greater cohort who have all helped within the process.”

She adds that the conference is proof of what can be achieved through a blended learning approach, which the university has adopted in the past year to deliver parts of its teaching face-to-face and parts online.

“This cohort of students was brought together from three different campuses and began blended learning halfway through their accelerated degree programme - but true to the industry that some already work in and others aspire to work in, they adapted, worked through it, and have come out the other side with success,” she says.

The conference aims to be beneficial not only to those working within the industry but also to any potential students who wish to learn more about UWTSD.

“What could be better than learning from our students, to really gain an understanding of what the International Hotel Management programme at UWTSD can offer,” says Dr Griffith-Parry. “For those from industry who will be joining us, and who are interested in the employment of well informed and prepared graduates, then look no further than those you can meet by attending this conference.

“Although this year has seen challenges for us all, as lecturers we have learnt to deliver content in a variety of ways, and it has made us more imaginative and student focussed. Those from industry who have joined us as guest speakers have shared almost lifetimes of hospitality experience, and the combination of the three campuses has given students the opportunity to share ideas, ideals and intentions for the future.”

While the conference will be the last day of the April 2019 BA(Hons) undergraduate course, some students intend to return in September 2021 to continue their studies at postgraduate level on the IHM MBA.

Further Information

Rebecca Davies

Swyddog Gweithredol Cysylltiadau â’r Wasg a’r Cyfryngau

Executive Press and Media Relations Officer

Cyfathrebu Corfforaethol a Chysylltiadau Cyhoeddus

Corporate Communications and PR

Mobile: 07384 467071

Email: Rebecca.Davies@uwtsd.ac.uk