An academy to train young men and women in hospitality management and tourism, has been established in Koforidua in the Eastern Region.
Being the first ever private hospitality institution to have been established in the country to train skilled professionals, the school is expected to begin operations in January 2018.
Founded by the Chief Executive Officer of the plush Mac-Dic Royal Hotel, the Academy located in the heart of the New Juaben Municipality would offer intensive theoretical and practical training to students in front office management, housekeeping as well as food and beverage operations.
Students who enroll in the school would have the opportunity to be attached to the three-star Mac-Dic Royal Plaza Hotel to acquire the relevant knowledge and skills required by the hospitality industry.
As part of measures to prepare students for the job market, students will have to spend eighteen months for a duration or six months for competency certification both in the classroom and practical training with the Mac-Dic Plaza Hotel.
The institution, to be headed by Dr.Joseph Mensah Ansah, President of Hotels and Tourism Schools in Africa, will conduct teaching and learning in well-furnished classrooms and laboratories fitted with ICT equipment.
The academy in collaboration with Council for Technical and Vocational Training Education (COTVET), organized a four-day capacity building workshop for eight facilitators of the Academy.
The facilitators, are mostly professionals working in the hospitality industry and some lecturing in tertiary institutions, were trained on how to use the competency-based training curriculum of COTVET to teach students in the academy.
The training formed part of the process towards the accreditation of the Mac-Dic Royal Hospitality Academy.
The competency-based training programmes comprised competency standards set by industry to ensure that students were well equipped with adequate practical knowledge and skills required for the job market.
Addressing the workshop, CEO of the facility and a former president of the Hoteliers Association of Ghana, Barimah Kofi Adjei Twinin noted that although there was a thriving hotel business in the country, there was a missing gap in human resource.
He said unlike other hospitality training schools, where students struggle to secure employment after completion, the academy would recommend its students for the best hotels in Ghana.
“My experiences show that guests would want to have value for money paid in our hotels but what the sector lacks is trained professionals to deliver quality services to meet expectations of our guests,” he said.
To address the challenge, the former President of the Ghana Hotels Association said he decided to set a hospitality academy to offer practical training to those already working in the sector as well as to the youth to pursue professional careers in the hospitality and tourism industry.
“Currently, Ghana is known as a hub of international conferences and this requires that players in the hotel business employed the right calibre of a competent workforce to offer professional quality services to give value for money,” he said.
The Director of Competency-based Training of COTVET, Mr Sampson D. Tetey, commended Barima Adjei Twinin for his vision to establish a hospitality academy, which he described as the first of its kind to be accredited in Ghana.
He hinted that by the close of 2018, all technical and vocational training institutions were to adopt the competency-based training approach which would bring together experts in industries to make inputs into the development of curricula of such institutions.