19 September 2018


Bokone Bophirima to host Tourism Career Expo for 3 years  

by: Simon Mmope   date: 01 June 2018

Bokone Bophirima province will be the home of the National Tourism Career Expo (NTCE) for three years from this year. 
The announcement was made during the networking session hosted by the National Department of Tourism at the recent Africa’s Travel Indaba held at the Durban International Convention Centre.
The main objective of the NTCE is to bridge the gap between the industry learners and provides a platform for the sector to create awareness about careers and opportunities that exist in the tourism industry, while giving learners and unemployed graduates an opportunity to interact with potential employers. 
MEC for Tourism, Desbo Mohono, welcomed the announcement, saying it gives the province a great opportunity to contribute to skills development and further add meaningfully to the tourism industry. 
“We have been waiting for this opportunity and now that it has come to fruition, we will make the most out of it. We are ready as the province to open doors to all aspiring young people and those who are already in the tourism industry. We will make sure that we rotate the event over the years afforded in all our four districts so that we will be able to reach all our young people in our rural province,” said MEC Mohono.
Bokone Bophirima takes over the reins from the Free State province, which has been the host from 2015. Handing over to Bokone Bophirima, Deputy Minister of Tourism, Elizabeth Thabethe, said the National Tourism Career Expo has unearthed hidden talents and made many dreams come true. 
“Through the NTCE, we have introduced more than 25 000 learners and graduates in the Free State over the past three years to various tourism professions and we are eager to increase this number in the North West from 2018 to 2020 in our quest to create more tourism jobs,” said Thabethe.
Deputy Minister Thabethe also took the opportunity to encourage learners to work hard in building their careers as the future of this country is in their hands.
“The NTCE 2018 is going to assume its true character of being a melting pot where all tourism education and training stakeholders and industry representatives meet, engage and interact on issues of demand and supply of skills in the sector.
“It is expected to live up to its slogan that says NTCE is not just a paper grabbing platform, but an interactive exercise. It is not like any other careers expo, as it brings all elements of Tourism Human Resources Development on board and is the biggest education and training event in tourism,” said Thabethe.
The participation of industry stakeholders at the NTCE has contributed to the event’s success and helped shape Youth Skills Development Programmes. 
“Our Chef Youth Development Programme was recently acknowledged at the 2018 Global Summit of Women in Australia - where we received the Ministerial Award with a prize of $5 000 for advancing employment creations for the youth and women,” said the Deputy Minister. 
Both MEC Mohono and Deputy Minister Thabethe thanked the tourism sector for assisting the department to place youth on experiential training programmes in order to fight youth unemployment. They also welcomed the announcement by Hilton Hotel Worldwide to sponsor two HTA Apprenticeship bursaries, offer work integrated learning opportunities to three Hospitality level six learners and five Hospitality level four learners and for committing to host a career day at a North West school before the 2019 NTCE.
The NTCE offers various platforms, where both learners and educators can participate. These include an exhibition of tourism products from the industry, academia as well as funding institutions. Also hosted is the Educator Seminar where educators in the tourism and hospitality sector get equipped with the latest advancements in the sector. 
The event is hosted annually for a three-year cycle in each province, the NTCE is a programme championed by a partnership between the national Department of Tourism, the Culture, Arts, Tourism, Hospitality, Sports, Sector Education and Training Authority (CATHSSETA) and Free State Department of Economic and Small Business Development, Tourism and Environment Affairs (DESTEA).