With an experience of over 10 years in the education industry, Kuoni Academy’s prime agenda has always been to provide internships for all its students with an aim to expose students to the practical side of how the travel industry operates. In a competitive market, apart from good educational qualification, what counts is, the students’ communication skills, confidence, exposure to practical knowledge, content that has been covered in their course and the brand value of their institutes. Keeping these prerequisites in mind, Brendan Crasto, head, Kuoni Academy says, “Apart from visiting faculties from the industry who are invited to familiarise students with the intricacies of the travel and tourism industry, our course has been created by staff from within the travel industry. This gives our students an edge in the market.”
Over the years there has been an increase in the number of students opting for professional degrees from reputed institutions in the tourism industry. “On an average around 15,000 to 20,000 students apply for various courses around the country which includes private institutes in both organised as well as unorganised segments,” he points out, adding that, “students today are enthusiastic about professional programmes being offered by leading institutes in the industr,. which have an experience in travel and tourism industry as they believe that such institutes will offer them experiential learning and practical knowledge of the industry.”
IATA is a popular course amongst students aspiring to pursue a career in the travel and tourism industry and is priced below Rs 50,000. The one year course in travel and tourism management which is highly sought after by students is competitively priced at around `one lakh. Kuoni Academy’s courses are recognised and accredited by C&G, UK. “ We are a premier authorised IATA centre pan India. We also have alliances with some of the leading GDSs like Galileo, Abacus and the international MBA offered from Fondazione Campus in Lucca, Italy. Our hospitality programme has a tie-up with IHM Aurangabad, India. All our students who undergo the one year and international MBA programmes are encouraged to complete a project as part of the curriculum under the guidance of expert faculty members,” he stressed.
Depending on their performance in the interviews, students opt for ticketing profiles, tour agency operations, sales, product development, tour managers, KPO and BPO industry opportunities. When asked on the reasons behind students opting for a travel and tourism course abroad, Crasto replies, “The ability to opt for a degree from abroad still remains with those who have the money to invest in an overseas education. A degree from abroad serves two purposes, one education as a route for migration and second to get a better perspective of global tourism.” But he also agrees that an international management degree does have an edge as these degrees focus more on management and revolves around in-depth knowledge of the industry being specialised. Kuoni Academy has a full fledged placement desk for all students across India. “Our placement cell strives for internships and project presentations of our students and also connects with various industry players to recruit our students,” he adds, as the industry faces challenges of generating good manpower. “This industry needs to attract people by offering higher entry pay scales and a more promising career,” he strongly advocates.