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Industry leaders congratulate Global Travel and Tourism Partnership on 20th Anniversary of student education

The Industry Advisory Board of the Global Travel and Tourism Partnership (GTTP) paid tribute to the foundation’s 20 years of success in teaching more than 2 million high school and vocational college students about travel, tourism and hospitality careers as well as sustainability issues. 
The Board Members include senior executives from Amadeus, American Express, Carlson Wagonlit Travel, Delta Airlines, dnata, Enterprise Holdings, Eurostar, The Hertz Corporation, Hogg Robinson Group, KDS, Starwood Hotels & Resorts, and Travelport. The World Tourism Organization (UNWTO) also voiced its congratulations to the GTTP community.


With the input of its members, who represent a broad cross section of some of the major players in the travel and tourism industry, the work of the GTTP over the past two decades has equipped young people around the world with relevant understanding and insight into the industry. In turn, the industry benefits from more people coming through the school systems with better skills and expertise, enabling the continued growth of the sector, inclusive of imperatives around sustainability, and maintaining the world’s assets for future generations.   

To celebrate its 20th Anniversary, the GTTP plans a series of student and teacher events throughout the year in its member countries of Brazil, Canada, China, Hong Kong, Hungary, Ireland, Jamaica, Kenya, Russia, South Africa, Tanzania, and the United Kingdom – and now also the Philippines, which joined the GTTP at the start of the year.  

Taleb Rifai, Secretary-General, World Tourism Organization (UNWTO), said: “Tourism's true value is in its people. UNWTO, as the United Nations Specialized Agency for Tourism, would like to congratulate the Global Travel and Tourism Partnership for the immense contribution it has made over the last 20 years to tourism development by educating youth around the world on the potential of a career in tourism.”  

Remarks from GTTP Advisory Board Members to commemorate the 20th Anniversary include the following:
Charles Petruccelli, Pelleas Partners, and a Founder of the GTTP and its Industry Advisory Board (while at American Express): “I am proud to see the journey accomplished by GTTP in the last 20 years. It is very gratifying to see how global travel industry brands have been willing to come together to invest in and support education, in addition to sharing knowledge about the great career opportunities in the travel industry with the two million students who have participated in the GTTP program since 1996.”

Michel Taride, Group President, Hertz International and Chairman of GTTP’s Advisory Board: “I have been hugely impressed by the talent and enthusiasm of the more than 100 GTTP student research winners I’ve met in the 19 years that Hertz has been a GTTP Global Partner. Many congratulations to the Global Travel and Tourism Partnership for its unwavering commitment over the past two decades to attract bright stars such as these young people to the industry to secure its future development, especially in developing countries where tourism is critical for economic development.”

David Radcliffe, Chief Executive, Hogg Robinson Group plc: “On behalf of everyone at HRG, well done and congratulations to the GTTP for their tremendous commitment to young people and the travel industry. I’d also like to congratulate and welcome all GTTP students who are now enjoying fulfilling and rewarding careers in travel.”

Gordon Wilson, President and CEO, Travelport: “Travel and Tourism is one of the biggest industries in the world in terms of both GDP contribution (around 9%) and employment (creating one in eleven jobs). In particular, it generates a huge range of career opportunities for young people across multiple disciplines ranging from customer services, IT and the digital economy, sales/marketing, finance and operations. Travelport is very proud to play an active part in the GTTP training programme, with our particular lens around the digital economy, and to work on the broader development of the curriculum and its accessibility for more students.  We remain fully committed to continuing to partner with the GTTP and continue with this worthy work.”  

Ailsa Pollard, Senior Vice President of dnata Travel (consumer), Middle East and India:  “dnata is proud to be part of the GTTP and the educational links they are building between global travel businesses and communities. Nurturing the talent pool is vital the industry's progress and sustainable growth, and we are absolutely keen to play a role in shaping our industry's future.”  

Françoise Grumberg, Vice President Global Responsible Business, Carlson Wagonlit Travel: “At CWT, we believe in being a responsible business. This includes seeking out ways to help the next generation expand their professional horizons as well as develop their career mobility and their sensitivity to the world’s sustainability challenges. With the GTTP, we know that we have found a great partner to help us achieve this goal. We highly commend the dedication of GTTP directors and teachers in helping students - especially in countries where travel and tourism is vital to the economy - to develop critical thinking about destination sustainability, the economic and social impacts of tourism, and skills needed for the workplace.”  

Peter Smith, Vice President of Global Franchising at Enterprise Holdings: “The growth of the international travel industry underscores the importance of the worldwide GTTP initiative overall. Moreover, as Enterprise continues to establish long-term and sustainable business operations all over the world, it’s clear that investing in today’s students and tomorrow’s employees in the travel and tourism sector is a key component of that strategic and global mindset.  It’s certainly a privilege to be part of such an innovative, thoughtful and responsible coalition.”  

Elizabeth Aston, Senior Advisor, Industry Affairs at Amadeus: “Amadeus is delighted to sponsor the worthy GTTP global educational program in Travel and Tourism that has life-changing results for students in underserved communities and helps shape the future of the travel industry through skills training and talent development.”  

Alexandra Leclerc, Associate Director, Global Citizenship, EAME, Starwood Hotels: “Our world is changing very fast, all the time, and businesses and society have to continuously adapt to the countless impacts of globalization. In this age, the private sector has increased opportunities and influence but also faces many responsibilities. Communities facing social challenges cannot be ignored by any one sector or any one region of the world. At Starwood, we have always viewed these challenges as a call to action and partnering with GTTP since the beginning has allowed us to recognize these shared problems and to ensure we play an active role in bringing solutions.”  

Mary Walsh, Director of Corporate Communications, Eurostar: “The GTTP plays a key role in developing the future generation of leaders in international tourism and travel.  In addition to building the skills base for this growth industry, this collation of partners also promotes greater cross-cultural awareness and understanding as its students gain valuable exposure to a range of different businesses and societies.”  

In conclusion, Dr. Nancy Needham, Executive Director of the Global Travel and Tourism Partnership, said: “The GTTP is very grateful for the support of our industry partners, which enables our Directors and teachers to serve more than 500,000 students in over 5,600 schools each year. Our industry partners have also hugely contributed to teacher training as well as the development of the GTTP’s Passport to the World curriculum used in 13 countries in Europe, Africa, Asia, and North and South America.”  

In 2014 the World Travel and Tourism Council conducted important research that identified the scale of the gaps in Travel & Tourism talent across 46 countries.  This shortfall in human capital could cost the global economy 14 million jobs and almost US$610 billion in GDP over the next ten years. This would be equivalent to lowering the level of total Travel & Tourism employment globally by 4% and global direct Travel & Tourism GDP by 5.5%.

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