Wexford Business Awards
I was absolutely delighted to receive the joint runner-up award in the Tourism category of The Wexford Business Awards during 2012. It was a real honour to share the stage with the other runners-up, Bill and Isobel Kelly of Kelly’s Resort Hotel. Kelly’s Resort Hotel went on to win the overall Wexford Business Award.
The shortlisted finalists in the Wexford tourism award category during 2012 were
This category was sponsored by Highwind Films
To have been shortlisted within this group of dynamic Wexford tourism business providers was in itself a privilege. To receive the runner-up award was beyond my greatest expectation. I feel this award has only helped to strengthen the validity and indeed credibility of the bass angling and guiding services available in this country. It was a fantastic opportunity for my small company to be challenged like this. It certainly brought attention to small businesses involved in the bass angling sector that a lot of people did not realise existed in Wexford or indeed in Ireland.
I would highly recommend other companies to enter the award challenge!
BSc Small enterprise management
Pioneering degree course for tourism entrepreneurs –
I was among the twenty three participants from the tourism sector participating on a degree programme aimed at owners and managers from the industry during September 2011 which completed during late September 2014.
This innovative programme was the first degree level course in Ireland to focus on the professional development needs of owner/managers of small tourism and hospitality enterprises. The twenty three participants represent enterprises across a number of tourism sectors including accommodation, restaurant, angling, water-based activities, conference, and education tourism and hail from nine counties including Kerry, Waterford, Dublin, Wexford, Kilkenny, Cork, Donegal, Mayo and Clare.
The degree programme emerged from years of collaboration between Fáilte Ireland and the School of Business, including the Fáilte Ireland Tourism Learning Networks (TLN) initiative, which the School managed in the south.
According to Dr Anthony Foley, Course Leader, “The participants are local tourism champions and have, through the programme, developed their professional and business management skills. A key outcome of the programme has been the development of distinct network development templates. The programme is also seen as a flagship programme for its pedagogical design, based on a Problem-based Learning (PBL) model, and its blended delivery.”
He said the requirements don’t just include competence in management, finance, operations and marketing, “but also understanding of the digital and increasingly competitive environment within which Irish tourism and hospitality operations operate”.
The programme emphasised the development of skills such as critical thinking and communication, allied to exposure to specialist knowledge in business development. It has also responded to the need for the tourism entrepreneur to be able to thrive in a radically changed landscape with the power and influence of the web, changing tourist profiles, economic downturn and increased competition.
WIT’s school of business head, Dr Thomas O’Toole, said the degree programme was designed to be relevant to the commercial realities of being a tourism entrepreneur, and used a Problem-based Learning (PBL) approach which places an emphasis on addressing and resolving realistic business situations.
“The programme was designed so that its delivery was flexible, with a limited number of structured lectures/seminars and considerable participant and lecturer engagement through an online learning environment, which met the flexible learning needs of tourism entrepreneurs,” he said.