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ITC supports unique, life-changing project

Posted on 05/11/2014 by
Manurewa High School Deputy Principal Phil Muir with some local children from Cambodia

Manurewa High School Deputy Principal Phil Muir with some local children from Cambodia

For several years, ITC has been sponsoring Manurewa High School’s Humanitarian Aid Leadership Programme (HALP) to Cambodia.

This year around 20 students embarked on a journey that saw them that return as “empowered, passionate, worldly young adults who have a greater desire to achieve and then give back to their community,” says Deputy Principal Phil Muir.

The students spent 12 days engaged in a range of projects and activities “that opened their eyes to the history and culture of a country that has been shattered by civil war, famine, genocide and poverty,” says Mr Muir.

The group worked with a number of aid projects including the World Vision Area Development Programme at Chi Kreng, and a NZAid funded agricultural programme that helps communities turn from subsistence farmers into productive croppers on land that was until recently covered with landmines.

Students also gave blood and donated to the Kantha Bopha children’s hospital in Siem Reap and the children’s hospital in Phnom Penh.

At Kantha Bopha, students heard from Nobel Peace laureate Dr Beat Richner. Student Kate Montgomery says, “Hearing about Dr. Beat Richner’s project of building and maintaining the Kantha Bopha Children’s Hospitals was inspiring. It’s amazing how much one person’s vision can impact millions of people’s lives. This helped me to realise that I have the power to help people too.”

“The HALP programme also has a long term relationship with the Centre for Children’s Happiness – an orphanage which rescues children from the dumps of Phnom Penh,” says Mr Muir “and the students spent a full day playing, muralling, teaching and interacting, as well as giving a large range of donated gifts.”

The group also spent a day with 20 students sponsored by the NZ Ministry of Foreign Affairs to study as postgraduate students in New Zealand in areas such as development studies and tourism development. “The idea is that they will return to Cambodia and help to build a more successful country,” says Mr Muir. “We made some excellent links with this group, and look forward to developing these contacts – particularly when the students come to New Zealand next year.”

The students also visited the Genocide Museum and the Killing Fields. This visit had a real impact on the students, including Kate Montgomery, who says, “Throughout the entire time we visited the prison I felt numb and weak. None of what I saw looked real to me. It was so far removed from what I consider to be reality that I just couldn’t make sense of it.”

Kate says that the trip was genuinely life changing for her: “I saw, did, and experienced things that I hadn’t before. It really showed me the importance of so many things that we take for granted in this world. Things such as transport, roads, clean water, bathrooms, money, blood, education, and above all, people.”

“It truly did change my life and me as a person. I am not who I was before, and I am still not who I will be. But I can say that I am different. And I plan to use my experience to impact on others’ lives, and to make a difference in this world.”

Mr Muir says that the trip would have been beyond the reach of many of the students without ITC’s help: “The 2013 HALP team truly wishes to thank International Travel College for their generous contribution and support – your belief in our unique, life-changing project is very highly valued.  We travelled as fabulous ambassadors for our community and country and your support helped to make this project a reality.”

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ITC Students shine at TRENZ 2014

Posted on 03/06/2014 by

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ITC’s students have once again proven themselves at the Tourism Rendezvous New Zealand 2014 (TRENZ) event.

The students volunteered through the TRENZ Student Ambassador Programme. They provided support and assistance at the event, which saw approximately 1100 TRENZ delegates, international visitors and event sponsors come together at the Queens Wharf complex on Auckland’s Waterfront. (more…)

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ITC training opens industry doors

Posted on 09/08/2013 by

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Recent ITC graduate Mohammed Alzergawi has a role as an airport ambassador at the domestic terminal at Auckland International Airport.

“This is a great opportunity to work and meet new people from all around the world,” says Mohammed. “I am constantly developing the skills I learnt at ITC by interacting with people and providing exceptional customer service to passengers arriving and departing Auckland.”

Natasha Allen, ITC’s Campus Manager Botany, says that the opportunity for ITC’s students to work at the airport is second to none and has already resulted in new roles for students.

Students who wish to apply to work at the airport have an initial interview with Natasha; they then attend a presentation at the airport about the role and requirements, which leads to a formal interview. A full security check is then completed on each individual, as safety is paramount at the airport.

“Successful students are then given the very smart and stylish new black and red uniform – they all feel so proud to wear it and to represent the airport and New Zealand to arriving and departing passengers.”

And the work itself is thoroughly enjoyable, reports Mohammed.

“The days are varied and occasionally you even get to meet celebrities and athletes, which is very exciting. Every day I learn something new, which means I am always challenged and ensures that I enjoy each shift I work.”

“I appreciate the opportunity that has come my way and am excited that it will potentially open doors for me in this industry.”

“Mohammed’s attitude is fantastic,” says Natasha, “and goes to prove, yet again, that putting in hard work, showing commitment and dedication will definitely pay off.”

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