Opening Ceremony for Hospitality Courses implemented by the Vocational Skills Development Program (VSDP) on 6th May 2019

An opening ceremony for the third batch of hospitality courses implemented by the Vocational Skills Development Program, Swisscontact, was held at Hotel Umbra in Bagan on the 6th of May 2019.

One hundred and twenty learners from disadvantaged background will start their seven-week long training for the occupations of room attendant, waiting staff, bell service and commis. In parallel, smiliar courses have also been opened in Mandalay, Nay Pyi Taw, Yangon, Kyaikhto, Myeik, Dawei and Kawthoung.

U Aung Thu, Director, Directorate of Hotel and Tourism, Ministry of Hotels and Tourism attended and delivered an opening address explaining the purpose of the training and encouraging learners to make the most out of this opportunity. He also highlighted how this training can support employment opportunities for young people. The event was attended by representatives from the Myanmar Hoteliers Association (Bagan Zone), as well as General Managers and HR personnel from a wide range of hotels in Bagan.

The Vocational Skills Development Program (VSDP), which is supported by Ministry of Hotels and Tourism and implemented by Swisscontact, has been delivering hospitality courses in Myanmar since 2015. The VSDP is funded by the Swiss government through the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation (SDC). The VSDP focuses on providing vocational skills training in selected hospitality occupations across tourism centres in Myanmar. These practically oriented training courses were successfully piloted in the first phase of VSDP, which took place between 2014 and 2018.

The training follows a cascading model where professional master instructors with international experience develop the skills of supervisors within partner hotels, known as hospitality instructors. These hospitality instructors then have the necessary skills to deliver hospitality courses to learners from disadvantaged backgrounds, as well as line staff within their hotels. The master Instructors provide mentoring and coaching support to the hospitality instructors throughout the implementation of the courses. These courses help the learners to develop relevant practical skills and knowledge for employment in the hospitality sector, through structured on-the-job training in hotels.

Through this cascading model, the VSDP has trained 604 hospitality instructors and these instructors have in turn trained 4,080 learners from disadvantaged backgrounds and 1,460 hotel line staff since the start of the first phase.