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Level 4 famil a huge success for ITC students

Posted on 20/06/2023 by

The recent level 4 famil was a huge success, giving students a chance to learn about the industry outside of the classroom.

One of the many benefits of studying with ITC is that we know and value the importance of real-world experiences. ‘Famils’, or familiarisations, are the perfect way to get students out of the classroom and outside to explore the lessons they have been learning in real life.

Recently, our fabulous Short Course tutor Michelle Newsome took Auckland students from both campuses on an incredible three-day famil. Michelle is not only an expert on travel and tourism, but an experienced travel guide herself, making her the perfect person to share her knowledge.

“It’s one thing to learn the theory in the classroom but nothing beats actually experiencing what it’s like to be a tourist or working in the tourism industry. That gives the students the edge when it comes to finding a job and bringing some real knowledge and enthusiasm to the careers they choose when they finish their studies with us,” she explained.

The three-day itinerary

Day one: After leaving Auckland in the morning, the students enjoyed a visit to Matamata for a look around before heading to Rotorua. Here, they completed a canopy tour zipline then had a free evening to themselves.

Day two: In the morning, the students visited the Te Puia Geothermal park, one of New Zealand’s top attractions. This was followed by a Maori cultural performance, then in the afternoon, students got to relax in the warm waters of the Polynesian Spa. They finished off the day with a visit to the Redwoods Treewalk.

Day three: On the final morning of the trip, students visited the Novotel Rotorua hotel for an insider’s look into how a hotel runs. On their way back to Auckland, they made one final stop to explore the Hamilton Gardens.

Michelle said the choice of activities was designed to “give an opportunity to experience many of the highlights of tourism here in Aotearoa.”

So how did it all go?

Tutor Michelle only had wonderful things to say about the famil itself and the level 4 students. She said that even though the weather was chilly, they had beautiful weather for the whole trip, and that she hoped the students would be able to look back on their experiences having learned a thing or two, and to feel excited about the possibilities and opportunities ahead of them.

Here’s what she had to say about the activities themselves!

“Our time out with Rotorua Canopy Tours was epic, absolutely amazing guides and such a beautiful thrilling experience sailing along the ziplines in the most incredible ancient forest. A few students I know had to face their fears and step out of their comfort zone and I’m super proud of them!”

“You can’t go to Rotorua without learning about the geothermal wonders, our visit to Te Puia saw us getting up close to geysers and mud pools and even our own native Kiwi! We also got to experience a Maori cultural performance alongside international visitors and it was really special witnessing the students realising that some of what might be an natural part of their own lives and culture is a sight of wonder and fascination for those who are visiting Aotearoa for the first time.”

“After all that walking around we deserved a soak in the healing mineral waters of the Polynesian Spa! A perfect spot to relax and understand one of the main reasons people visit Rotorua.”

“If our Instagrams weren’t busy enough already, it was time for the nightwalk at the Redwoods Treewalk. A magical almost fantasy-like experience crossing swing bridges and looking out from platforms high in the trees as the forest is lit up with lanterns and projections.”

“Had to make a stop on the way back at the Hamilton gardens, their new Egyptian garden was a favourite- though it’s the Italian one all day for me! A fantastic way to travel the world without leaving the country!”

“As a tour guide, I had to give the students a chance to see what it was like doing my job, so had given them a topic to prepare a short spiel on to deliver while on the coach. Was super impressed at some of their research and storytelling abilities! We may have the next generation of guiding superstars ready to go!”

There were so many fantastic photos taken throughout the famil that we compiled the best and shared them in an album on our Facebook page. You can view them all here!

Enrol at the college that goes beyond the classroom

Travel and tourism is a hands-on industry, which is why ITC ensures students have plenty of hands-on opportunities to learn outside the classroom to support their studies.

Famils are a big part of that – not to mention how much fun they are for students. We also work with students and the industry to organise work experience opportunities, encourage students to apply for the Disney Exchange Program, and more.

If that’s a learning environment that sounds like you, you can find out more by getting in touch with our team today. We’re enrolling now for our July courses, so you don’t even need to wait until the new year to get started!

Contact us today.

Campus Study – 0800 TOURISM (0800 868747) or

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