DTCM operating a programme aimed at increasing the number of UAE Nationals working in the hospitality and tourism industry
Dubai’s Department of Tourism and Commerce Marketing (DTCM) recently operated the latest edition of a vocational training programme aimed at developing opportunities for UAE nationals within the hospitality and tourism industry.
Dubai Tourism honored the UAE nationals who joined “START”, the vocational programme at its award ceremony held at the Jumeirah Beach Hotel which was attended by a number of hotel managers who participated in shaping the programme.
“START” was activated in cooperation with the American Hotel and Lodging Educational Institute (AHLEI), and included a series of intensive training courses. The programme aims at providing young professionals with some of the knowledge and skills required for long-term careers in an industry which continues to be a key pillar of the Dubai and UAE economy. Run over a five week period during November and December of last year, the “START” was attended by more than 40 UAE nationals.
Ibrahim Yaqoot, Executive Director, Corporate Support at DTCM said: “Over the last decade, Emiratisation has been a key focus for governmental entities across the UAE. We launched the “START” vocational programme in 2011, with the objective of providing intensive training for UAE Nationals, and consequently helping to increase the number of UAE Nationals working in the hospitality and tourism sectors.
“The programme provides training that develops skills and knowledge required to take up a range of positions including those in the food and beverage divisions, front desk, reservations, housekeeping, room and bell services, restaurant services, and banquet setup and service. Providing training in customer service and professionalism and encouraging career exploration are other important components of “START”. After successfully completing the programme, we are confident that the candidates will be equipped with the right skills for the hospitality field in addition to gaining self-confidence and a boost in work ethics.”
The number of UAE nationals currently working in the industry has reached 2000 with an aim to increase the number by 15% every year until 2020.
Also honored at the event, were a group of hotels that include Hyatt Hotels in Dubai, Rotana, Hilton Dubai, Richmond Hotel, Conrad Dubai, Al Habtoor Group, Raffles Dubai, Hilton Dubai the Walk, The Westin Dubai, Mina Seyahi Beach Resort & Marina, Jumeirah Group, Tamani Hotel Marina, The Four Points by Sheraton and The National Human Resource Development and Employment Authority (TANMIA).
The awards ceremony ended with certificates of appreciation handed out to the hotels and UAE nationals who successfully participated in the “START” programme.
Obaid Saif Al Shehhi holds a preparatory certificate since 2003 and has worked in the hospitality sector with companies such as Al-Futtaim, Al Shaya and the Health Club at Jumeirah Beach Hotel. With an ambition to be a gym instructor in a hotel health club, Obaid currently works as a front office employee. Enjoying the opportunities he gets to meet guests of different nationalities, he encourages his fellow Emiratis to consider working within the hospitality industry.
Ahlam Ibrahim Al Marzooqi holds a Diploma in Business Administration and joined the Higher College of Technology (HCT) this year to get a Bachelors degree. Ahlam wants to improve her skills in managing events; her ambition is to be an event manager in leading hotels such as Burj Al Arab. She advises her friends to join the programme and work in the tourism sector, noting that obtaining a “START” certificate is one of the key achievements to date in her career.
Alia Saeed Al Adeedi graduated from the Higher Colleges of Technology and worked in several companies such as Kanoo Group and the Union Cooperative in Dubai. Alia joined the programme to gain experience in the tourism sector and be an Emirati female representative in one of the leading hotels.
Ameera Darwish has held a Diploma of Commerce and Information Technology since 2008. She joined the programme to be a qualified UAE national working in this field: her ambition is to work as a manager and she encourages her friends to gain this great experience and work in the tourism sector.