The first students have completed the inaugural East Lothian Hospitality and Tourism Academy programme. Twenty two pupils took part in the two-year programme, designed to give them education and industry experience while still at school. The academy is a partnership between Edinburgh College, Queen Margaret University and East Lothian Council. It worked with some big names in the hospitality arena like Marriott, Novotel, Macdonald Hotels , Jurys Inn and Prestonfield. Ray McCowan, Vice Principal for Education and Leadership at the college, says the academy is a good example of how the college is engaging with employers more. “Working with these major hotel groups means we’re able to offer an extended learning experience completely aligned to the needs of those employers.”
The 22 students, who have now left school, achieved a Higher National Certificate (HNC) in hospitality. This secures them a place on specific courses at Edinburgh College or allows them to skip first year and move directly into the second year of the BA (Hons) in International Hospitality and Tourism Management at Queen Margaret University. Fifteen of the students have gone on to the QMU degree, two have gone to Edinburgh College to study events and tourism management, three have gone to courses at other universities, and two have gone straight into the workplace.