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Meet ITC’s fantastic new Tourism Education Tutor & Marketing Support person!

Posted on 21/02/2024 by

Seane is our new Tourism Education Tutor & Marketing Support person!

Seane Gifford, like so many of ITC’s incredible team, has an impressive background in travel and tourism.

She caught the travel bug from her mother at a young age, and always wondered what else was out there in the world for her to discover. That curiosity led to travels, qualifications, and amazing roles throughout her career.

Now, ITC is excited to welcome her to the team as a Tourism Education Tutor & marketing support person. We can’t wait to see her share her knowledge with students.

Learn more about her roots, her favourite job before now, what she’s looking forward to the most, and her advice for students below!

How did you begin your passion for the tourism industry?

It all started when I was very young. Ever since I can remember, I’ve had a passion for travel. My mum travelled the world in her 20s and worked in the UK. The stories she’d tell me growing up were fascinating and naturally sparked an interest and curiosity within me that will never cease.

Growing up in New Zealand, we were lucky enough to go on small trips to different destinations around NZ in the school holidays and I got to explore various places which led me to be proud of where I come from and from there I developed a case of the travel bug. What else is out there? I’d wonder. The world is a big place and I couldn’t wait to see it for myself. This is how it all started….

Fast forward a few years later, I jumped on the chance to study tourism in high school and passed with honours in my class. After school, I attended the tourism college and ITC for star courses. I graduated with a diploma in Travel Management and a hunger to explore! Doing these courses opened my eyes to the possibilities of working in an industry I have always been passionate about and provided so much excitement for learning, meeting new like-minded people and discovering new challenges and opportunities. 

What does your travel industry history look like?

During my time studying tourism, I got the incredible opportunity to move to Hamilton Island in Northern Queensland and do a paid internship on the island for 6 months at 19 years old. This was truly life changing and gave me the confidence to do more solo travel in the future and I was able to meet some great people, some I am still friends with today. 

In 2018, I landed an admin job in the travel industry at a boutique travel company called World Journeys specializing in Africa and South America but covered all parts of the world. This was so exciting to work amongst professionals who had travelled to all parts of the world and had decades of experience and knowledge. 

During COVID myself, along with many others was made redundant. This brought my tourism career to a grinding halt yet made me realise how much I want to re-enter it! 

What was your favourite job you’ve done (aside from your new role at ITC!)?

I had the privilege on my overseas travel journey in the UK on my working holiday visa to work at a company called PGL. This is like the British version of Camp America. I was a rock-climbing instructor and AIGL (Activities Instructor & Group Leader) this job was so rewarding as it allowed me to work with children aged 7-17 and I got to be 100% myself.

If I wanted to yell a song and chant at the top of my lungs? I could do it! It allowed my inner child to come out in the best way. I always had a fear of rock climbing as a child from school camp. I never could have imagined I’d be thrown onto an assessment to be teaching it, let alone actually PASS and thrive! Using my experience of being afraid of heights and climbing as a kid I really believe this helped the children overcome their own fears when they were being taught by someone they could connect with and relate to.

How will your experience help support students?

My experience will help support students because I am relatable and have lived a similar journey to them!  Being an ex-travel college student I know what it’s like to study this as a full time subject and I have then gone on to work in the industry and travel Europe/ UK! I can bring my up-to-date knowledge and experiences into the classroom to help influence and encourage students to be the best versions of themselves to succeed not only at work but in their personal lives too! 

What are you looking forward to the most in your new role?

Connecting with the students and seeing their confidence grow within themselves and their futures. Also being able to expand my knowledge of the industry and teaching! In my own way I am still a student. 

What do you think are the most important skills to have in the tourism industry?

Professionalism, empathy, motivation & drive, passion, patience, communication and people skills! You have to be able to successfully sell a product or create memorable experiences for people they won’t soon forget.

What is your best advice for those getting into the industry now?

GO FOR IT! Take that leap of faith, if you are passionate about tourism and it lights you up you have to do yourself the service of giving it a go. The industry is booming and will always be popular in NZ. It’s a career that you can wear so many hats in, you can bounce around jobs and travel while you’re at it! 

Study at ITC, where the tutors and team really know their stuff!

Did you know that the ITC team has more than 250 years of experience between them? Everyone here is a bit travel mad, which means we have lifetimes of experience, knowledge, and skills to share with students – not to mention passion for the industry.

We’d love to pass on that knowledge. Get in touch with our friendly team to find out what qualifications you can earn with ITC, or ask us about how to enrol today.

Campus Study – 0800 TOURISM (0800 868747) or

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