Two entities within the tourism sector have combined efforts to undertake a
programme aimed at providing primary school students with firsthand knowledge
of the hospitality industry.
The programme brings together technicians from the Antigua and Barbuda Hotels
and Tourism Association (ABHTA) as well as the Schools Tourism Awareness
Programme within the Ministry of Tourism.
Leading this initiative is Paula C. Joseph, the Community Education and Training
Officer, who is delivering crucial information profiling key areas of the industry,
illustrating its economic benefits, and emphasizing how everyone can contribute to
Minister of Tourism Charles “Max” Fernandez, remarked that “The Schools
Tourism Awareness Programme has been in both Government and Private Primary
schools for some 25 years. The main reason for visiting the schools is to sensitize
our students about their role in the tourism product, since it is our main industry.
The students are encouraged to keep their school campus clean, and by extension
the country, by not littering. They are doing this first for themselves because they
have civic pride, and as a plus our visitors come and enjoy a clean Antigua &
Barbuda. They are also encouraged to be polite and friendly to our visitors and to
assist with directions when necessary. The programme continues to be a
welcomed feature each term at all primary schools.”
During a visit to Jennings Secondary School, Rachel Browne, 2nd Vice Chair of
the ABHTA, emphasized the association's commitment to educating the next
generation of hospitality professionals. She stated, "There is a myriad of roles
available in the hospitality sector, and we are pleased to bring this wide cross-
section of roles upfront and personal to the students. In addition to school visits,
we are also excited to involve our members in ensuring that primary school
students in 5th and 6th grades have an opportunity to visit tourism businesses
across the country."
The Primary School partnership programme commenced in the 1st term, with visits
already conducted in sixteen (16) schools. The programme is set to continue
throughout terms 2 and 3, fostering a sustained and impactful engagement with the