(L-R): Mrs. Ejike Catherine Ugochi, a senior lecturer at NIHOTOUR, Mrs Ugochi Uche-Ibeabuchi, Mr Femi Fadina, Frank Meke, Member, Association of Tourism Practitioner of Nigeria (ATPN) Board of Trustees and Ronke Matanmi, business development executive Awori Tourism Board during the ceremony
A new vista for professional training and certification for operators and aspiring young entrepreneurs in tourism beckons as Awori Tourism Board has signed a Memoranda of Understanding (MoU) with the National Institutional for Hospitality and Tourism (NIHOTOUR), on the establishing of a new hospitality training institute being propositioned by the Awori Tourism Board.
At the signing ceremony held at Radisson Blu Hotel, Ikeja GRA, Lagos the Chairman of Awori Tourism Board, Prince Femi Fadina, disclosed that Awori Tourism Board decided to collaborate with NIHOTOUR in order to put the training institute on a firm footing in its quest to offer professional training and certification to the teeming professionals and enterprising youths seeking professional certification and skills in tourism business.
The school, which is situated in Ota, Ogun State, according to Fadina, is all set to run as all the needed facilities and infrastructure for a conducive and productive learning have been put in place. He further stated that the training institute, which is both for professional and vocation training, is designed to encourage youth involvement, generate employment opportunities and ensure provision of optimum service delivery in the hospitality industry.
‘‘The signing of the MoU birthed the establishment of the first tourism training institute in Southwest, Nigeria, so as to train many youths in the country on tourism and hospitality businesses,’’ he said.
With this development, Fadina said that Awori Tourism Board is prepared to change the trend of neglecting youths in the development of the sector, saying that it is imperative to engage youths in tourism business, so as to provide job opportunity for them.
Fadina also revealed that plans are in the works to extend the school to other parts of Southwest, adding that graduates of the school would be awarded both the National Diploma and Higher National Diploma Certificates in Tourism.
He added that it would also afford them the opportunity to pursue training up to PhD in tourism, assuring that the institute would offer premium and standard teaching and learning opportunities, as only the best brains would be engaged to train prospective students.
In her remarks, the Zonal Coordinator, Lagos Campus, NIHOTOUR, Mrs. Chinyere Uche-Ibeabuchi, commended Awori Tourism Board for the vision and decision to partner with NIHOTOUR, giving assurance that NIHOTOUR would play its part to ensure that the school succeeds and becomes one of the best privately run tourism school in the country.
While Ms. Ejike Catherine Ugochi, a senior lecturer at NIHOTOUR, said that the institute had been specifically established to provide manpower training, research and capacity building for youths and personnel in the industry.
They both urged the youths to embrace the formal and professional training offered only by approved organisations such as Awori Tourism Board’s training institute.