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New masters’ degrees for hospitality sector

University of West of Scotland aims to improve skill set within hospitality industry

Date : 01/07/2015

University of the West of Scotland (UWS) has launched two new work-based qualifications with the aim to improve the skills of those already working in the industry.

The country’s first work-based master’s degrees in international tourism and events management have been designed by UWS to address concerns about a lack of formal training among many of the 175,000 people working in the industry.

Dr Daniel Turner, senior lecturer in events and tourism at UWS, said: “Many people working in hospitality in the UK entered the industry before there were specific qualifications in this area – and these individuals can now be in very senior positions. They now find themselves contending with increasing numbers of people with degrees in related fields, especially from competing countries and regions.

“However, there is a problem in the industry in finding spare time for employees to gain qualifications and improve their skills. By delivering a work-based approach to meeting these skill gaps, we have given our tourism leaders of today and tomorrow the opportunity to bolster their skills without affecting their employer or business.”

Marc Crothall, CEO of the Scottish Tourism Alliance (STA) said: “Strong and effective industry leadership at all levels, across all sectors is required if we are to deliver the growth ambition in Scotland’s tourism strategy. We need everyone working in the industry to step up to be a leader in their own area of expertise and qualifications such as these will help meet that aspiration.

“Scotland has to compete on the international stage and deliver quality, memorable experiences to visitors who come with each new wave of tourism – from China, the Middle East and countries closer to home.”

The MSc International Events Management and MSc International Tourism Management courses at UWS are taking applications now for September entry.

With the global tourism industry becoming fiercely competitive, Tourism Intelligence Scotland has created the Tourism 2020 Strategy which includes a guide on how to provide the best customer experience and tips on how to understand your market.