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Students benefit from tour guiding work experience placements


As part of Work Experience Week 2016 (10th to 14th October) Travel and the Visitor Economy students from Hugh Baird College in Bootle have been taking up roles packed with responsibility on board the City Explorer sightseeing tour bus.

As part of Work Experience Week 2016 (10th to 14th October) Travel and the Visitor Economy students from Hugh Baird College in Bootle have been taking up roles packed with responsibility on board the City Explorer sightseeing tour bus.

Schools and colleges no longer have a legal requirement to provide work experience to all of their learners, which has led to patchy provision and a ‘postcode lottery’ when it comes to quality. One of the ways that Hugh Baird College is helping to address this is by ensuring that every student enrols not just on a vocational qualification, but on an individually tailored ‘study programme’ designed to meet their learning needs and provide the knowledge, skills and attributes required for employment.

In the latest in a series of opportunities offered by City Explorer Liverpool, the Travel and the Visitor Economy students have been developing their skills thanks to undertaking a variety of different roles. Roles they have taken on have included selling tickets to tourists and providing information on the different tour packages available has helped develop their customer service skills, whilst providing the commentary to visitors once the tours are underway has increased their self-confidence when publicly speaking.

Paul McCombs, Tour Guide Manager at Maghull Coaches Limited who run the City Explorer tour, said:

We have an excellent working partnership with Hugh Baird College so when we were approached by the staff to provide work placements for students we jumped at the chance. The visitor economy of Liverpool is growing rapidly, so as an organisation, we feel we have a duty to ensure that young people in the area are aware of where the job opportunities lie. I know this is an outlook and ethos shared by Hugh Baird College and this is just one of the reasons the partnership works so well. I am always amazed by the enthusiasm and professionalism of the students from the College and those we’ve had on work experience placement have once again been exceptional.

Hugh Baird College’s Curriculum Coordinator for Travel and the Visitor Economy, Andrea Currie, added:

Our main aim at the College is make our students employable and we are proud of the many links we have developed with local and national employers. The partnership with City Explorer is a shining example of industry and education working together to benefit the learners and address skills shortages in the area. I would like to thank Paul and all at Maghull Coaches Limited for their ongoing support.

Erin Godby, who is studying on the Travel and the Visitor Economy Cabin Crew course at the College and was one of the learners who undertook a work experience placement said:

I am really enjoying my course at Hugh Baird College because we get to do so many different activities that will look great on my CV. Undertaking work experience on the City Explorer is just another thing I can talk about to employers when I go out to look for full time work. In the future, I would like to work as cabin crew on a leading airline. Since arriving at the college I have grown in confidence so much and this is something that will really help me realise my goal.

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