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A day in the life of ITC’s Account Manager – Ceri Jenkins

Posted on 07/04/2011 by

Ceri Jenkins has been with ITC since August 2007. Ceri is responsible for managing the relationship between ITC and industry and the many schools we work with. Ceri has a wealth of experience in the New Zealand tourism industry and had worked in the Industry for 9 years before starting at ITC.

1 April 2011
April is typically quiet in the industry in Auckland, and businesses are usually looking to downsize for the winter season. But with the Rugby World Cup coming up, employers are aware they need to recruit and train new staff now and hold onto their existing staff to ensure they have the skills and expertise to deal with a busy September and October. So Ceri has a full day of meetings lined up.

First up is a meeting with Alyson Hill, the Auckland retail sales manager of Explore NZ. Explore NZ offers a range of tours and cruises in Auckland and the Bay of Islands. Ceri has met Alyson before when she was working with Tourism Auckland at the i-SITE office, but this is the first time ITC has worked with Explore NZ. Ceri is keen to discuss work experience and entry position opportunities for our students. It’s a great meeting, and Alyson says Explore NZ has been impressed with the students they have met so far from ITC. She’s particularly impressed with their enthusiasm, the depth of their training and their desire to get into the industry. One of our students already has an interview lined up with Explore NZ. Very positive!

Next, Ceri has a meeting with a contact he has known for years: Lynne Butler at Auckland Tourism, Events and Economic Development Ltd. This is the tourism unit of Tourism Auckland and is responsible for encouraging international and domestic visitors to come to Auckland. Lynne manages the infrastructure of i-SITE, including recruitment. Ceri invites her to become a member of the ITC Advisory Board, as she has wealth of industry knowledge and experience. They also have further discussions on the volunteer programme for the Rugby World Cup, in which ITC students will be involved. Ceri wants to know how the programme is going to work in terms of timescales, recruiting, and logistics. They also discuss how the new recruitment process will work, as this is now run through the Auckland Council.

Ceri’s next meeting is with is Shireen Bosch. Shireen is the manager of the Auckland i-Site Visitor Centre – Princes Wharf. Ceri is here to discuss the ITC work experience programme and site visits for ITC and high school students. These visits help students gain an understanding the functions of an i-SITE office and give them a taste of some of the career paths available to them once they have graduated. Many students don’t realise the range of skills needed to work in this area, or the opportunities it can give them. Ceri’s role is pivotal in helping students see the link between further study and their career paths.

Ceri’s final meeting for the day is with Joanne Dunabie, the HR Manager at the Heritage Hotel. This is an introductory meeting to help Ceri assess their recruitment needs and work experience programme, so that we can see what mutual opportunities there are for ITC’s students and the hotel. Another great meeting and Joanne says she will send her vacancies to be listed with ITC.

Then it’s back to the office to check emails and discover that there have been a number of industry-related April Fool’s jokes circulating in the media, including one about InterCity’s new “green initiative” to fuel its buses on sheep manure! Time for a quick laugh, and then it’s off to help with the preparations for the school group visiting on Monday 4th April.

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Music is the flavour of the month

Posted on 22/03/2011 by
This is a GUEST blog from Curtis Palmer – an ex ITC graduate who quit his job (he was on TV) and he decided to go out and have some fun for the next few months. He’s also a GOLD medal winner with the Wheel Blacks. He’s been blogging on his travels, a really great read. If you want to subscribe his blog it’s URL is – http://adventureswiththeangryredhead.blogspot.com/ He’s not angry at all :) Thanks Curtis for letting me share your news. ;)

Hi everyone. It’s been a month since I last wrote…I missed ya!
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Have you met our new Tutor at Botany?

Posted on 08/03/2011 by

Hi my name is Cathy. I flew for Air New Zealand International for 10 years as a flight attendant. I loved my job and was very lucky to have the opportunity to travel the world, see the sites, experience different cultures and different foods.

But I’ve now moved on to a new role as a tutor at ITC and I am lucky enough to be here at the Botany campus with an amazing group of people who are fast becoming my little work family.

It’s a challenging role for me, but already very rewarding. I’ve already seen students succeed and it’s very satisfying to know that I’m playing a part in that, knowing I’ve done my job well and I am going to see these students go out into the world and find their dream job…that’s just awesome!

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Guess who I saw when I was at the airport?

Posted on 16/02/2011 by

Late last year I travelled to Europe on Singapore Airlines. Menzies Aviation looks after the check-in for that airline at Auckland International Airport. When I arrived, they were training two ITC graduates, one from our City campus and one from our Botany campus.

Fouvale Iva completed my check-in without a hitch, and also did a great job at the boarding gate. It was great to see our ITC graduates in action!

She and her colleagues were flat out with the busy flight, so I only had the opportunity to say: “Doing a great job!” before I left them to their training.

Many new employees at Menzies have come from ITC, and we’ve had lots of positive feedback from them about how job-ready our graduates are from their very first day.

Because our training is really comprehensive, our graduates are ready to hit the ground running. Our Airport Training Centres, which simulate real-world airports, have given our students a real confidence that when they get a job they will already be familiar with the systems and processes they will be using. Watching Fouvale and her colleague at work showed me that it all pays off!

My trip to Europe was great, and I enjoyed catching up with family and friends. I even got to catch up with some friends from high school, whom I hadn’t seen since then.

The Singapore Airlines flight I was on for my return to New Zealand arrived just before midnight. I didn’t envy those people at customs and other parts of the airport that had to work at that time of the night. Luckily that’s the last flight, so hopefully they were able to go home afterwards and enjoy a good night’s sleep. I know I did!

Carla Sutton
Distance Learning Tutor

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Getting off to a great start!

Posted on 14/12/2010 by

JUCY Rentals is one of Australasia’s fastest growing independent car rental companies. The International Travel College of New Zealand (ITC) has been working with JUCY to place students in part-time work while they study.

Established in 2001 by brothers Tim and Dan Alpe, JUCY Rentals operates over 2000 late-model vehicles throughout New Zealand and Australia and has just opened its first JUCY Hotel in Auckland.

As market leaders in the New Zealand car rental industry, JUCY’s vehicles range from cheap and cheerful runabouts suitable for backpackers and budget customers, to luxury full-size sedans, with a few soccer-team-movers thrown in for good measure.

Working with ITC, a premium supplier of full-time and part-time training programmes for the airline, travel and tourism industries for over 14 years, to give student’s real-world experience has made things much easier as an employer, says JUCY’s Maree Street. “We know that the quality of their candidates is always of a high standard, so half our interview work is done for us.”

Two recent student placements, Daniel and Zoey, have proven the value of the connection for both JUCY and ITC’s students.

“Dan was a perfect fit for JUCY,” says Maree. “As soon as I met him, he came across with a very genuine, bubbly, laid back personality: I knew he would slot right in at JUCY! We attribute our success to the calibre of the people we employ, and we’re always on the lookout for young, enthusiastic people like Dan to ensure that all our customers get that JUCY experience!”

“Zoey came across as very confident in her interview: she was bubbly, friendly and approachable, and this is what JUCY is looking for in a great customer service rep who will be dealing with a range of customers from all over the world. For JUCY, having Zoey on board means our customers are going to be starting their journey on the right note!”

“We are really proud of both these students,” says ITC’s Sales Executive Ceri Jenkins. “They’ve worked hard to incorporate everything they are learning at ITC about being successful in their chosen field. We value our industry connections, and it is initiatives like this that prove that we are getting it right for the college, its students, and New Zealand’s travel and tourism businesses.”

 

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New Industry Link Provides Opportunity for ITC’s Students

Posted on 30/11/2010 by

The International Travel College of New Zealand (ITC) has formed a strong industry link with Auckland War Memorial Museum to help students gain practical experience in the areas of sales, marketing, and account or relationship management.
 
ITC has been a premium supplier of full-time and part-time training programmes for the airline, travel and tourism industries for over 14 years. ITC Botany has been based in the Botany shopping mall since 2005, and is now training over 300 students from Manukau and the surrounding area.

ITC’s Sales Executive Ceri Jenkins has been working with Auckland Museum’s Tourism Manager Adam Taylor to place students in volunteer positions. They have created a programme that will see students keeping the museum’s agents up to date with events and activities.

“The students will be representing the Museum every month by visiting the hotels, motels, backpackers, I-sites, language schools and other tourism operators” says Adam.

“The museum’s staff has placed a great degree of trust in our students and in our ability to train them well for these kinds of roles,” says Ceri.

And the students are already validating that level of trust. They visited Daniel King, Auckland shop manager for Stray, Spaceships Global, and Adventure Tours NZ and OZ. Daniel emailed the museum “Just to let you know we have your brochures in my shop, also we got some new stuff from your charming assistants. They just came into the shop and they were awesome! You did well to find them.”

“You can’t ask for better than that!” says Ceri.

The museum’s staff was so impressed with the standard of ITC’s training that it decided to use ITC as its only source of candidates for ten part-time positions in its two onsite retail outlets.

Jude Bottomley, the museum’s retail operations manager says, “Many thanks to you and your team for the outstanding group of young people, who will be great ambassadors not only for ITC, but also for the Museum. I wish each and every one of them the very best for future.”

And the future looks bright for the ten selected students. If they impress during their part-time roles, they could very well land themselves full-time positions at the museum. They will also be building valuable relationship networks throughout Auckland’s tourism industry.

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My first year at ITC, John Windle

Posted on 16/11/2010 by

“You’re going where?” asked Rob. I was standing in the White Horse in Brixton, a busy noisy suburb in South London, the centre of the Afro-Caribbean community in London and my home for the last 5 years. It was the usual 6pm drink on a Friday night when I caught up with my mates to celebrate the end of another working week.

“I’m going to New Zealand. I’ve been offered a job at the International Travel College in Auckland”. “But who will you teach?” asked my mate Rob. All the kiwis are here on their OEs living in West London, working in bars” he said before asking if I liked Kangaroo meat. Geography has never been one of Rob’s better subjects. Ask him about which label the Doors recorded on or the artwork on the last Dr Feelgood album and he’ll bore you for hours, but knowing the difference between New Zealand and Australia (or any other English speaking country) and he’s useless.

Yes I was lucky enough to have been offered a job at the multiple award winning college by the director Karen Houston. The next few weeks were busy as organised a tenant for my flat, sold loads of stuff on eBay (the UK version of TradeMe) and waved goodbye to my battered little blue 1997 Fiat Punto. There were tearful parties with friends and family and then the big day arrived, more hugs, tears and those awkward silences when people see you off at the airport and you’ve all said all there is to say. And then suddenly I had gone through passport control and I was alone in the departure lounge at Gatwick waiting for the Emirates flight to Dubai where I would transfer to the Auckland flight via Brisbane.

I felt quite strange. This wasn’t like going on holiday where you know you’ll be coming back through the same gate in a week or two, back to your flat where piles of junk mail from Estate Agents and Indian takeaway menus will be waiting for you in the letter box. I was leaving London and I didn’t know when I’d be back. I was flying to a country I hadn’t visited for 13 years to work in a building I had never seen with people I had never met.

The flight was good but full. Dubai was hot and Brisbane was cool at 4am. And then flying over the Tasman Sea I got my first glimpse of New Zealand. But only for a second, as we were inevitably engulfed in Long White Clouds until we were right over Auckland. The cloud was low so I only briefly saw “No” Tree Hill, the Skytower and Waitemata Harbour. But then the mud flats of Manukau Harbour hurtled towards us and we glided into Auckland Airport.

My first day was good. Kerry introduced me to the rest of the team and Michelle organised a morning tea in Travel World where I shook hands with everyone apart from Lanthia who gave me a hongi. Nice touch I thought.

Since then at work I have taught a variety of subjects, been on field trips to Devonport, harbour cruises, ten pin bowling in Panmure, organised the ITC New Zealand Fashion Awards with Inder and Caroline last November, been up the Skytower, run with a torch through the tunnels in North Head, visited a Marae, organised the ITC FIFA World Cup (Brazil won) and worked with some amazing students. Travel and Tourism is a people business and the grounding the students get at ITC is excellent. Employers I have talked to are impressed by the quality of the students. ITC has just won another two awards this time at the prestigious Manukau Business Awards for customer service and innovation.

So, I’ve been here nearly a year now. I’ve missed English pubs and my mates. But Auckland has been very good to me so far. When I occasionally pine for home and a decent kebab I have found an English shop in Onehunga where I can buy Curly Wurlies and Scampi Fries. But I have been introduced to Jaffas, Pavlovas, the freshest fruit and vegetables and good hangis. I’m still undecided about L&P but I am now hooked on “This Is Not My Life” on TVNZ. I have discovered that when someone says bring a plate, they don’t mean “we have run out of crockery” so bring an empty plate, that they mean you’re supposed to take bring some food. And my mate Rob would be disappointed to learn I have had no kangaroo meat.

Maybe one of my strongest memories from my first year in Auckland is standing on Kohimarama beach at sunset with amazing shades of red, orange and purple overhead, watching the Queen Mary 2 sail past Rangitoto, out of Auckland harbour on her way back to England. She was an impressive site. I quietly wished her bon voyage but as I stood there barefoot with the sand between my toes I had no wish to be sailing back to England with her.

John Windle is the programme leader for the Diploma course at The International Travel College of New Zealand.

John (left) pictured with some of the team at a Graduation 

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What does ‘studying from home’ really mean??

Posted on 11/11/2010 by

Margaret Wilson, an Auckland mother of five, recently completed distance learning studies with The International Travel College of New Zealand, achieving the highest “Distinction” award for her efforts.  Here’s what she had to say about her experience:

“Because I have always wanted to work in the tourism industry, knowing this course would help me work towards it, and being able to study by distance learning was the perfect solution.  Knowing that I could study during times that would suit me, and I didn’t have to leave home was the best.

I had a study plan made up, tried that on my first week, and found that did not work.  Especially with a 5 month old at the time, I mainly had to work around him, as his routines changed, or if one of my kids became ill, I had to change my study time plan.  I knew I really wanted to make this work, so I had to put in the odd hours, here and there. 

Before my course started I phoned my family and friends to tell them I was starting a course, and was committing myself for the next 5 months studying and had to put them on hold if they were wanting to do the social visits. I was unavailable and strictly concentrating on my studies, and my children.  My family offered to take the kids during some weekends, which I appreciated and of course said “Cool, I will not say no to that.”  My husband offered to cook our family dinners every night, so that helped me out.  My older children would always help me out with the house chores in the weekends, as they knew this was important to me, so every fortnight I would treat them something small to say thank you, and that I appreciated their help, which made them want to help me out more.  My eldest daughter took on making her siblings’ lunches for school.  Together we made a weekly roster for dishes after dinner.  Some nights we were so lucky our family and close friends dropped by to drop off dinner made for us, so I was very lucky and blessed.  I still attended school concerts and games.  I found napping in the day with my baby while my older children were at school was where I was going to get my rests in between studying, as I found studying from 10pm – 2am was the best time for me to concentrate without distraction and noise.  Some nights I would get carried away because I was enjoying myself so much, I would find I was still up until 4am, or even when my kids woke to get ready for school!  Then, after seeing them off I would do breakfast for my youngest, he would play a little, than get tired, and we would both sleep.  I had to make these changes, as I knew it was only going to be for the next 5 months until my course ended, once I finished all would be worth it, especially when I secure my dream job.  I was invited to social gatherings that I had to say “NO” as the weekends I gave up most of them to catch up whenever I fell behind, wanting to reach my deadlines. 

Early in my course my youngest got sick a lot.  Winter was starting, it was getting colder, and we were heading into flu season.  Being at such a young age, all my son wanted was me there next to him by his side.  During those times, no one could help me, as all Benson wanted was his mummy.  I did go through thinking I could not continue and found it difficult, and felt the stress coming on.  I got a lot of support from our tutors, who were very understanding, and seeing them, and my online classmates believe in me with their kind words, I knew how far I had come, and I was not going to give up.  I fought the challenge, gave all the attention I could to my son who was unwell, stayed calm for both him and I, and every little nap that he took I used for study, even if I was tired.  I had people that believed in me, and I knew I could do it, especially my children.  I kept going, and knowing I was getting back to being up to date, and the feedback from my tutor, – it just made me proud of what I had achieved, that kept me going. 

My husband and children were excited for me.  I guess that’s a great thing about studying at home, no one else can see the dark circles under your eyes and tiredness during times like these.  Hahaha!  As we also received study books for almost each topic, when my son was wanting me to lie with him, I would use those times to read these aloud, as he loved hearing my voice.

I found putting a washing load in at night while I was up studying these late hours helped, so first thing in the morning, everything was washed, I just had to hang them all in one go.  So that would have been like a break for me to get up walk around, and change a washing load. 

It was not easy, my sisters thought I was crazy with the hours, but I had committed to doing this course, and they could all see it, the support just fell naturally.  Late nights, I had no choice; I was still there to help my children with their homework.  A lot of the times they would turn to their eldest sister (they look up to her and think she is the coolest), so she helped me through this so much.  My children put up with their dad’s cooking, which was not bad at all – he did a good job making sure every night was something completely different – but probably why my children chose Valentines for lunch for their big treat of me completing the course at the end!

I am overjoyed I have completed my National Certificate course, and am now taking on the challenge of continuing my studies to the next level, this time on-campus at ITC’s Auckland City campus!!!“

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Innovation Key to ITC’s Success

Posted on 18/10/2010 by

Attendees from International Travel College were thrilled to hear ITC’s name announced as the winner in the ATTO Tourism Education and Training category in the 2010 Tourism Industry Awards.

The theme for this year’s awards was Innovating for Success.

“That certainly describes us!” says ITC’s Director Karen Houston. “In the past two years we’ve launched our Certificate in Aviation, introduced the CODECO online check-in system as part of our training, and opened our amazing new Airport Training Centre.”

ITC’s Airport Training Centre is one of the many contributing factors to ITC’s success. A simulation of a real-world airport, it contains check-in desks, a customs and gate lounge, and a plane to assist with training students in in-flight service. The centre, which is situated at ITC’s Botany campus has been so successful, the college is opening another one in November at its city campus.

“From day one we want our students to be prepared for the exciting careers they have ahead of them,” says Karen.  “In addition to their training at the college, we have built great connections with industry that allow us to provide our students with on-site work experience at businesses and events around the country.”

ITC has also recently launched its Study Awards, offering a scholarship fund of over $22,000 for more than 30 students. Applicants are asked to create a promotional brochure for an Auckland-based activity and innovation plays a big part in who will be successful. 

“Our success is about all of us,” says Karen. “It’s about the staff and the students all working together to keep improving this industry we are all so passionate about.  We’d like to say a huge thank you to the Tourism Industry Association for giving us this chance to showcase what we are all about.”

ITC has been a premium supplier of full-time and part-time training programmes for the airline, travel and tourism industries for over 14 years. ITC Botany has been based in the Botany shopping mall since 2005, and is now training over 300 students from Manukau and the surrounding area.

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ITC Wins Again!!

Posted on 29/09/2010 by

The International Travel College of New Zealand (ITC) has won two categories awards at the prestigious Westpac Manukau Business Excellence Awards. ITC won in the Excellence in Service Delivery and Excellence in Tourism and Hospitality  categories.

The awards ceremony was held at the TelstraClear Pacific Event Centre on Friday 17 September. Director Karen Houston was at the awards with a number of ITC’s staff.

“What a fantastic night,” says Karen. “We are just so thrilled to win at these awards again. They are a very meaningful reflection of our success in the city of Manukau. And to win the two awards is such an honour for the college.”

ITC has been a premium supplier of full-time and part-time training programmes for the airline, travel and tourism industries since 1997. The ITC Botany campus opened in 2005 and is now training over 300 students from Manukau and the surrounding area.

“We have always believed in what our college, our staff and our students can achieve together,” says Karen, “but to have this recognised from outside the college tells us we are getting it right.”

ITC has excellent placement rates for its graduates, which Karen says is a direct reflection of the college’s constant striving to better the facilities, training and outcomes for their students.

“We’re incredibly proud of our facilities; they are pretty special, and our staff is so involved and committed to helping our students realise their dreams. We have such a great community at the college.”

ITC’s strong links with industry also contribute to the college’s success. “Our industry contacts consistently comment on how well our graduates are prepared for work in their businesses. And our industry contacts regularly provide our students with valuable opportunities for onsite training, so it’s a win/win situation.”
 
It was certainly a win/win situation for ITC on Friday night.

“We’re just so grateful to everyone who works together to make ITC the place to be for training in the travel and tourism industries. And a very big thank you to the Westpac Manukau Business Awards for recognising our success in this way.”

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