National Geographic has named Donegal as ‘the coolest place on the planet’ for 2017. Donegal ETB is only too aware that this accolade, along with the success of the brand of the Wild Atlantic Way, will stir great interest in the area. Donegal is preparing itself for a record-breaking year in tourism.
Donegal ETB Further Education and Training (FET) Service was encouraged by the 8% growth rate in the industry in 2016. The Back to Education Initiative (BTEI) recognised the potential and established three courses in Hospitality (Front Desk) and Tourism Operations in three locations.
Donegal ETB knows the value of collaboration. Therefore, in order to enhance the employability of our students, we liaised with local industry to order to establish the needs of the hoteliers and tourist providers. We liaised with Fáilte Ireland, the Irish Hotels Federation, and various hotel owners in order to establish their needs.
Each class has visited hotels in their local area for ‘A Day in the Life of a Hotel’. BTEI students from Milford, Finn Valley and Ballyshannon visited Harvey’s Point Hotel on 3 May. Deirdre McGlone, manager of Harvey’s Point, which was named Best Hotel in Ireland and 10th Best in Europe, instilled in our learners in Hospitality and Tourism the value of creating a memorable experience for guests. Deirdre emphasised the importance of generating the Céad Míle Fáilte, the hundred thousand welcomes, throughout the hotel. Deirdre believes in good internal and external customer service, and knows the hotel’s unique selling point is its staff.
Visits like these will give our learners and trainees insights into the running of a hotel, along with the various functions and advantages to working in the area that tops the cool list for 2017!