Learning Virtually: TPDCo Tourism Youth Expo and Career Fair

youth expoImagine close to six hundred persons in a room… that’s a full house and is almost unheard of in these times. You might’ve even had a lapse in memory, having seen old videos of gatherings and wondered “where are the masks?!”.  Groups hugs and huddles seem a far way off, but surely the internet and new technology have been a savior. As for us at TPDCo, our recent Youth Expo and Career Fair was saved by the invention of the wireless connection.

One common goal we share at TPDCo is to allow as many persons as possible to benefit from our programmes, and at our recent staging of the Youth Expo and Career Fair, an audience of over six hundred attendees was able to connect with us virtually. Joining via a zoom link and on YouTube via JIS and TPDCo, students and teachers were especially pleased to have so many tourism professionals to answer their burning questions.

The chat room was kept busy which was triggered by presentations by Matthew “Jamaican Food Boss” Robinson on the booming digital media, renowned local Executive Chef Mark Cole and Jamaica Tourist Board’s presentation on Marketing the destination done by Deputy Director of Tourism – Marketing Camile Glenister. The excitement in the room felt nostalgic, based on experience of interacting and engaging students at the previous staging.

Using creativity, some presentations were pre-recorded to allow students to have a visual idea of the duties involved in some skills and careers such as Mixology, Chef Cole’s pasta dish demonstration, Food Boss’ mash up of his tours, among others. The vibrancy that virtual engagement requires was not limited to recordings, and the soulful and radiant nature of the industry was communicated through presenters Trudi Davidson from Jamaica Vacations, Half Moon’s Conroy Thompson, HEART Trust NTA and the sought-after Jamaica Centre of Tourism Innovation skills training programme through Dr Shelly-Ann Whitely Clarke.

The students, based on their eagerness to win prizes, showed that learning can be electrifying and empowering.  They showed full support through the detailed questions and requests to learn more from their highly qualified presenters, who undoubtedly are experts and stalwarts in the sector.

Many of us might be longing for much needed physical interaction, as you might be an extrovert or its simply the better option based on learning needs. However, as we wait for full immersion into society again, let us be remined that learning and personal growth is still possible.

The wide array of applications and programmes have given us the opportunity to share tourism facts and knowledge with the world. Students and teachers are still able to access and share information despite the new remote learning orders. We implore you, our students, and teachers to take advantage of programmes and activities such as these should you require tourism related information.

If this blog sparked your interest, feel free to use the link below to view the recently held session via our youtube page.


Otherwise, send us a mail at letusknow@tpdco.org or on social media @tpdcoja to talk to us or stay updated on all things TPDCo and tourism.


Until next time,

Take care and stay safe!