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Meet Acacia Barnes: A graduate who enrolled at ITC after more than a decade in another industry

Posted on 30/03/2021 by

Student Acacia Barnes is studying with ITC after first spending a decade in an entirely different industry!

In March 2020, Acacia Barnes was like many students around New Zealand. She was finishing up her studies at ITC and looking forward to an exciting career ahead – but the pandemic threw a spanner in those works.  

Thanks to ITC’s flexibility, all ITC students were able to quickly switch to our online platform, which is how Acacia completed her level 4 studies with us shortly after in June.

From going back to school after more than a decade in another industry, to studying during lockdowns, to now continuing her studies at level 5, Acacia has quite the inspiring story to tell. We caught up with her recently to chat about her time at ITC, goals and hopes for the future, and advice for anyone thinking of studying at ITC.

What have you been up to since ITC?

I am currently continuing on with my study at ITC. I decided to carry on and up skill with level 5 after I completed level 4 in June 2020.

I have also just applied for a potential internship for event planning. 

How did covid-19 impact your career?

I think COVID has taught everyone that these times are very challenging, but there are ways in which we can put our skills into practice within other industries. These changes have had an impact on my choice of chosen job role, but I chose to continue study until the borders open up again. In doing so, I am gaining a higher qualification and will be ready when the industry booms again. 

What did ITC do for you personally or professionally?

ITC has helped me gain new qualifications. After working in the hairdressing industry for 12 years. ITC helped me gain the skills I need to pursue a new career in the travel and tourism industry. 

What are your ultimate career goals?

My ultimate career goal would be to continue to work with people. Either with AVSEC (Aviation Security) or Customs. Border security has always been something that has interested me and I would take any opportunity to pursue this career. 

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

I think the biggest step for New Zealand tourism will be domestic tourism. With the uncertainty of our borders, I think the best thing to do is to explore our own backyard and continue to support local tourism operators. 

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

I would like to say that studying at ITC has been one of the best decisions I have made. The team at ITC are friendly and always willing to help. If you have any doubts, the tutors are always willing to help with any concerns you may have with your studies.

I recommend ITC to anyone that wants to pursue a career in travel and tourism. I had such a great experience studying in level 4, which has now led me to continue my studies in level 5.

Acacia’s story is an incredible one, and we can’t wait to see where her studies take her. If you’d like to study at ITC like Acacia, now’s the time to get in touch and start an exciting and rewarding career in travel, tourism, and aviation. 

Campus Study – 0800 TOURISM (0800 868747) or

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