THE Institute of Tourism and Hospitality Management at the Solomon Islands National University (SINU) will offer its first degree program on bachelor Hospitality business and event management next year, 2019.
Department Director Charlie Panakera said the new program will make it to 6 qualifications in total within the tourism department.
“We have already 5 qualifications, which include Certificate in Hospitality, Certificate in Travel and Tourism, Diploma in Hospitality and Diploma in Travel Tourism and Diploma Tourism,” he said.
Mr Panakera said the school has so far a total of 230 students with 85% of them are women.
“In hospitality, we have only about 60 whilst the rest are on tourism undergoing their certificate and diploma and now we want to have a degree to allow them to move on.
“We only have 60 in Hospitality depending on the size of the kitchen and so we have to keep the number small,” he added.
Mr Panakera said the kitchen is also different where it involves hands on, where each one with a knife and a place each at the table and hygiene are very strict.
“But in a way it’s good because it turns out with more quality graduates and that they can easily find jobs after they leave school,” he said.
He added the institute of tourism and management is now looking so smart in its appearance but it must be got to be efficient and professional.
“What I found in this institute was over time they start to realise and take a lot of sense and pride in what they do and they really do well with their hands on skills and their academic performance,” he said.
He said what is good about the institute as well is they provide an environment where they can work and experience what they learn as part of their learning experience processes.
Mr Panakera said since taking the role few years back, he not only focuses on academic studies but physical education where he provided sports equipment for them to use during official and non-official hours.
“We also provide sports equipment for them to have sports, provide pastoral care and mentoring, as our student success depends on that relationship where it turns out they perform really well and during the recent graduation, their department came out with the top students,” he added.
He said the idea of expanding the program will also attract outside neighbouring countries so that outside students and money are piped in to help run the programs.
By IAN MCDONALD