By Rudina HOXHA
The Albanian Academy of Hospitality and Tourism, led by Gladiola Dona, has signed a partnership agreement with one of the most prestigious Universities in Switzerland "Business and Hospitality Management School" (BHMS), based in Lucerne.
"We are really proud because our curriculum matches that of BHMS, which means that one year of study at the Albanian Academy of Hospitality and Tourism is recognized by BHMS, so our students can transfer their studies and attend the year. second directly to BHMS, ”says Gladiola Dona in an exclusive interview with STAR PEOPLE, adding "Swiss tourism schools offer the best education in the field of Hospitality and we are very proud that our Academy signed this partnership. ”
She considers this "a great opportunity" for students to further their studies and pursue an international career in the field of hospitality.
What was the first sparke behind the Hospitality and Tourism Academy? Can you tell us more about her?
I always speak with pride and enthusiasm when it comes to the Academy of Hospitality and Tourism. It has been my dream since the first days of my studies in Austria when I myself was a graduate in the field of Hospitality. Twenty years later, here I am with my colleagues training Bartenders, Waiters, Receptionists, Department Managers and Hoteliers at my Academy of Hospitality and Tourism.
For 4 years now, we are offering professional courses, consultations and training in this field in Albania and Kosovo. The Academy is located in Tirana where we started with little but with great enthusiasm and passion. Meanwhile, the Academy has expanded greatly by offering online courses while we also have a second location that operates as a franchise school in a 5 star facility in Shengjin, Lezha.
Our curriculum has been successful as long as all our Academy graduates bring change to the job market.
This year, our Academy has signed a partnership agreement with one of the most prestigious Universities in Switzerland "Business and Hospitality Management School" (BHMS), in Lucerne and we are very proud of that.
Is cooperation with Switzerland one of your most important professional achievements so far when we talk about the Academy of Hospitality and Tourism?
Indeed, we are proud that our curriculum matches that of BHMS, which means that one year of study at the Albanian Academy of Hospitality and Tourism is recognized by BHMS, so our students can transfer their studies and attend the year of second directly to BHMS.
Swiss tourism schools offer the best education in the field of Hospitality and we are very proud that our Academy signed this partnership
At BHMS, students from all over the world study in a big city like Lucerne. It is a great opportunity for students to further their studies and pursue an international career in the field of hospitality.
How is the Academy working for young people? What is the final goal you want to achieve?
The Academy of Hospitality and Tourism is like a platform for professionals. The moment you are part of it, you will always be part of this circuit. We not only offer a good curriculum but also support and 'coaching' for students to make them great professionals in the field of hospitality.
We work with the best Restaurants, Bars and Hotels in Albania who are always looking to hire our graduates.
Mention the name of a restaurant, bar or hotel you know; there you will find the graduates of our Academy. Some of them are entrepreneurs who try to put into practice all the knowledge they gained during their studies. We are always in touch with them and direct them beyond the course of study. Their success is our success; so our goal is for all our graduates to make a difference in this sector.
Can you discover the key ingredients you embody in this Academy to guarantee excellence in the Hospitality sector?
My main ingredient for making the Academy successful are the people I have chosen to work with. All our trainers are professionals with a long international and local experience who demonstrate the best practices of training and empowering our students. We have worked to make the lectures interesting and practical. Our evaluation criteria are very specific and strict. No, it is not easy to get our professional certificate. Anyone who has received a certificate from the Academy of Hospitality and Tourism, has passed at least 4 theoretical and practical tests with an assessment of at least 70 points out of 100 points.
What does this Academy offer to have a sustainable Tourism in Albania?
No matter what we aim for, we offer courses, training or business consulting, we are always focused on providing sustainable solutions. For example, if we train the staff of a hotel, we start with the training of managers, and give them all the tools and knowledge to make it possible for them to train their staff as needed. We start by creating procedures because we strongly believe that procedures are what ensure stability.
As we provide consulting to a business and intervene to make it successful, we always use (Our Key Performance Indicators - KPIs) because we need to measure the success of our intervention. Our professional courses in themselves are already the best practices to ensure a sustainable tourism in Albania. I strongly suggest that entrepreneurs train staff before they start a business and during its operation. Training is the best investment they can make. Training will increase the numbers for a successful and sustainable venture.