Approximately 150 graduates of the Jamaica Centre of Tourism Innovation (JCTI) project participated in a closing ceremony for the pilot phase of the project.
The JCTI which is an initiative of the Ministry of Tourism is implemented by the Tourism Product Development Company Limited (TPDCo). The main objective of the project is to provide training for tertiary graduates with Hospitality and Culinary Arts qualifications. Upon completion of the training, the candidates received certification from international partner, the American Hotel and Lodging Educational Institute (AHLEI), which will allow the candidates to be able to use their certification at the international level. The project forms part of the Human Capital Development component of the Ministry of Tourism’s five pillars of tourism growth.
The breakout for the first cohort of 150 participants include 75 Certified Hospitality Supervisors from the JCTI Pilot, 12 students, with Certification in Hospitality Analytics (CHIA) , 11 Candidates have completed American Culinary Federation (ACF) certification, 2 ACF Certified Executive Chefs have received certification as Certified Evaluators and 50 Certified Hospitality Supervisors from the Centre of Occupational Studies (COS) Programme will be able to move on to the occupational degree programme.
In delivering the keynote address at the graduation ceremony, Minister of Tourism, Honourable Edmund Bartlett highlighted the need for JCTI and the purpose it will serve to transform the labour market.
“Tourism is no longer a seasonal industry; we are now an all year round economic activity with a team of workers who must be fully certified to produce at the highest level of competence. We want to make a statement to the industry by transforming the labour market in Jamaica in relation to the employment of tourism workers in Jamaica.”
He went further to say that the JCTI will provide an opportunity for tourism workers to be well rounded and marketable, thereby facilitating personal growth and that of the local tourism sector.
“We are putting you (the graduates) in a position to operate anywhere in the world and at any level. JCTI will help to create a clear path to help you to move on from Managers, Managing Directors and eventually owners of hotels across Jamaica.” He said.
The pilot for the project was launched in November 2017 and saw its completion in March of this year. The students were dispersed to hotels across the Jamaica where they received practical work experience in the hospitality and Culinary Arts industry.