Wednesday, 13 November 2013

UCLan and Merlin team up for 'Tourism in Action'

First year Tourism Management students took time out from their theoretical studies to gain some real industry exposure with one of the largest visitor attraction operators in the world - Merlin Entertainments.

Europe's leading name in location based, family entertainment has partnered with UCLan to deliver a 'Tourism in Action' module which has been designed specifically to engage students directly with industry at a very early stage in their course.

Merlin Operations Manager Brad Rowbotham conducted a presentation followed by a Question & Answer session. The students then visited a number of Blackpool's leading attractions including Madame Tussauds, Blackpool Tower Eye and Blackpool Tower Dungeons, with a view to assessing tourism development and facilities within the resort and the influences determining the success of visitor attractions. It was also an opportunity to develop their research and networking skills.

Students will be conducting a presentation on the project’s findings and creating a Wiki site detailing these as part of the module.

Course Leader Carley Sutton and Merlin Group have established ongoing work experience and international graduate opportunities for UCLan Tourism students, which could see them progress straight onto the company's 18 month fast track graduate programme, training to be one of the future leaders of a global business.

Carley said: "In engaging students directly with the tourism industry, the Tourism in Action module allowed students to visit Blackpool and its Merlin Entertainments cluster. This study visit exposed the students to professional tourism practices and allowed them to understand the complexities of destination management and organisational challenges – the students had a unique field visit experience."

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