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Richard Hasson

Job Title: Lecturer in Travel and Tourism

Department: Business & Service Industries 

Previous Roles/Industry Experience: Having achieved a BA (Hons) Degree in Travel and Tourism and a PGCE in Business Education I worked with several tour operators in the winter ski holiday sector before I started my teaching career. My first industry role in Travel and Tourism took place in the Canadian ski resort of Whistler where I worked as a holiday rep and ski guide across both Whistler and Blackcomb mountains. My second industry role took place in the French ski resort of Tignes and I was employed by a tour operator called Ski Beat to manage and run a ski chalet which accommodated up to 14 guests on a weekly basis throughout the ski season. Both of these roles provided me with fantastic travel opportunities to beautiful parts of the world and the chance to meet with many friendly and interesting customers. I would recommend careers in travel and tourism due to the wide range of opportunities and experiences that they present.

Benefit(s) of learning from an industry expert: The industry experience that I have gained has helped me to understand the roles of different organisations within the travel and tourism industry and to learn the wide range of skills needed to work in this sector up to management level. This understanding and the skills established now provide the foundations for the work that I do in the classroom and help to underpin the range of subjects that I teach. Learning from an industry expert is a big advantage to our students as they are sharing in the expertise of their lecturers. Having worked at the heart of the travel and tourism industry our lecturers are able to provide a learning experience for our students that is both relevant and current. Teaching from experience adds so much value for our learners and helps to bring subjects to life in the classroom.

Tell us why students should study your course/subject area at Northern Regional College: Travel and Tourism is a vibrant industry and studying this subject helps to develop an understanding of how the sector is organised, why people visit different parts of the world, which destinations are growing in popularity and the impact that travel and tourism can have around the world. Subjects in our Travel and Tourism course in Northern Regional College range from Global Destinations to Customer Service and Passenger Transport. We also have a subject within which students can be very creative by coming up with a new Travel and Tourism business idea.

We start our Travel and Tourism courses with an induction week which is based around local tourism on the north coast and our courses are full of educational trips and guest speakers throughout the length of the programmes.  Studying travel and tourism can lead to some very exciting career opportunities such as Cabin Crew, Travel Agent, Tour Operator, Holiday Rep, Travel Blogger, Event Manager, Tour Guide, Tourist Information provider, or careers within sectors such as Film Tourism, Sports Tourism and Hospitality.  Students can also progress into higher education such as Foundation Degree, HND/C and Degrees in Travel & Tourism and other related disciplines.

Most rewarding part of your job: Working with enthusiastic students who share a passion for travel and tourism is very rewarding and it is great to see our students move into successful careers and enjoying the opportunities presented by this growing industry.

Most memorable moment at Northern Regional College: Going to visit our new campus building on Union Street Coleraine during its construction. I am really looking forward to moving into our new Coleraine campus next year and to showing our students the new facilities.