Catering & Tourism Training Institute (CTTI).

If approved by the Council of Ministers, the Catering & Tourism Training Institute (CTTI) will start training tourism and hospitality professionals at a first-degree level.

Endorsed by the Ministry of Science & Higher Education, the establishment regulation of the Institute was sent to the Council of Ministers on August 30, 2019, for final approval. The amendment will enable the Institute to upgrade its level of training, which was previously limited to the diploma level. Holding a diploma from the Institute, the trainees were then getting a first degree from the Technical & Vocational Educational Training Institutes (TVET).

The Institute will be able to provide its own degree programme, according to Gezahegn Abate, deputy director for the Institute, which was enrolling students from grade 10. It used to give courses to degree level trainees of TVET Institutes.

"The Institute will facilitate dormitories and food services at its own for the trainees," said Gezahegn.

The hospitality and tourism sector is one of the areas that is getting renewed focus from the current economic reform agenda of the administration. The agenda identified the sector's potential to bring foreign currency and create more jobs.

Demand from the industry for trained professionals is increasing, according to Gezahegn.

"In the last fiscal year alone," said Gezahegn, "24 new hotels were opened."

The Institute, which operates with a single branch that is located close to Mexico Square, graduated 800 students last fiscal year. It operates with 300 general staff members, including instructors that give training under two major departments through regular and extension programmes.

The two major departments are hotels and tourism. Both departments give common courses like foreign languages, psychology, information technology, entrepreneurship and first aid.

Under the tourism department, it provides level-five courses on tourism management, level-four courses on tourism supervision and operation and level-three courses on tour guiding. In the hotel management department, it gives level-five courses in hotel management, level-four courses on food and beverage management, front office, housekeeping and laundry supervision, and level-three courses on foreign dish cooking, food and beverage control.

On top of training students, the Institute provides different services, including research activities, as well as providing consultancy services to tour organisations.

Along with the reform, the Institute plans to add courses like Ethiopian traditional cooking, according to Gezahegn.

CTTI will join the existing 13 universities that already give hotel management training at the degree level.

Yohannes Paulos, a consultant who has 45 years of experience in international hotels, see the reform plan of CTTI as a wise move.

"With the joining of more and more international brand hotels," said  Yohannes, "the industry is demanding international standard employees."

Yohannes also believes that local theoretical training is not enough in bringing qualified professionals into the industry.

"It should consider giving practical training by partnering with local international brand hotels," he said.

Lately, Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed (PhD) disclosed his administration’s plan to turn six applied training institutions into universities. A road map drafted by the Ministry of Science & Higher Education also pointed out the need to open applied universities to link theory with practice and introduce more engagement in scientific research.

PUBLISHED ON Sep 14,2019 [ VOL 20 , NO 1011]

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