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Graduate interview: Meet the ITC graduate who discovered her dream job after studying at ITC!

Posted on 07/04/2021 by

Meet the ITC graduate who discovered her dream job after studying at ITC!

After graduating from ITC, Paige Halpin set out to take on the world of tourism and travel – although she didn’t quite know exactly where she wanted to be just yet.

She began with a stint at Walt Disney World, and only discovered her dream job once she returned home to New Zealand.

We asked her all about it in our latest graduate interview, as well as how Covid-19 affected her career, what she thinks is next for the industry, and her advice for current and upcoming ITC students!

What have you been up to since ITC?

Since my days at ITC I had been working as a check-in agent for Queens and Princes Wharf for the cruise ships with ID Tours NZ.

I had been there since the 31st of January 2017 right up until March 10th 2020. I had to stop doing that job because COVID-19 put a hold on cruise ships. No cruises meant no job.

Covid was a challenging year and the focus was then about self-care. It’s not the easiest when you have to put your energy and focus on finding a new job.

What is your current job position and how are you finding it?  

I’ve started 2021 off nice and fresh with a better mind set for this year. Taking time for yourself is important. This I found a job as a front of house person at a small place called Fisher House.

I recently studied a course called “LCQ” Licence Controller Qualification, where I was able to get the certificate I needed in order to become a licensed bartender. I’ve found this certificate very useful towards this new job.

I’m finding this new job very lovely, it isn’t what I wanted, but that is okay and I am learning to accept it and go with it.

What did ITC do for you personally or professionally?

ITC helped me to find my dream job which was being a check-in agent for the cruise ship terminals here in Auckland City.

I didn’t know it was my dream job until I got back from Walt Disney World in 2018. I went back to this job after Disney because I found that I was able to work during the day, go on the cruises themselves then come back and work during the day.

It was a lovely experience as I knew a lot about the cruise ships that were in the port and I was able to give my experience and guide to the clients going on the cruises themselves.

ITC also helped me gain the confidence that I needed to know that I wanted and needed in life in order to get where I want to go. This contributed to the courage I needed to focus on getting myself on track and getting employment this year.

What are your or were your ultimate career goals?

My ultimate career goal was to continue working at the cruise ship terminal because I loved it and I was really enjoying working there. To me it was the ultimate dream.

What do you think is next for New Zealand’s tourism industry?

I think eventually NZ’s tourism industry will pick up again. It’ll be slow and steady but I think we will get there in the end, we are a strong country, capable of doing and achieving anything we believe.

I believe in time the cruises might come back, slow and steady at first. When the borders open to Australia in a couple of weeks we can start with some tourists from there first to help get the industry back up and running.

What advice do you have to give those out there considering studying with ITC?

The advice that I have for anyone who studying at ITC would be to ask as many questions as you can. Don’t be afraid to.

If you want to do something then do it, don’t let the opportunity pass you by. I went to Disney World, it was one of the hardest times of my life working and living there but in the end I got through it. I believed in myself that I could do it and I ended up getting through it. Yes I struggled there so much, and nobody told me how much I was going to struggle or how hard it was going to be, I found that out on my own, but in the end I got through it.

I made some of my greatest friends and memories there. What they do tell you is the friends and memories that you will make. I still have great contact with some of the people there. It’s been 4 years but one of my best friends lives in Boston, we haven’t seen each other since Disney days but plan on it one day.

Since ITC it has been a rollercoaster ride but I have enjoyed the ride. If you feel like an opportunity has presented itself to you, please take it and don’t hesitate. Ask questions, enjoy life and do what you want to do. You may struggle, you may not, but you will never know until you try.


Paige’s story is an incredible one, and one that highlights what a great education and personal drive and persistence can do for you. If you’re interested in following in Paige’s footsteps and discovering your dream job in the tourism and travel industry, get in touch with ITC to find out more about our courses.

Campus Study – 0800 TOURISM (0800 868747) or


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