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Southern Cross Uni wins NSW Tourism award


12 December 2002
Southern Cross University wins NSW Tourism award for fourth year. It's official: Southern Cross University still has the best tourism degrees in NSW, winning the NSW Tourism award for Tourism Education and Training for the fourth year.

NSW Minister for Tourism, Sandra Nori, announced the awards last night at the Sydney Convention Centre in Darling Harbour.

"(Southern Cross University's) School of Tourism and Hospitality Management is internationally-recognised for its excellence in tourism and hospitality education and research," the Minister said in a statement.

Another winner from the Northern Rivers was the Angourie Rainforest Retreat in Yamba, which won the New Tourism Development Award.

"Both winners have shown innovation, initiative, professionalism, business acumen and a commitment to quality and service," Ms Nori said.

"The judges received more than 140 entries (for 33 awards) and the standard was very high."

Head of the School of Tourism and Hospitality Management, Perry Hobson, said the award was recognition of the hard work by his colleagues in the School in Lismore and Coffs Harbour, the Hotel School in Sydney, and the Centre for Regional Tourism Research (based at the Lismore campus).

"I think the award is continued recognition of the high standards of our program, of our research and the staff we have," Mr Hobson said.

He noted the Angourie Rainforest Retreat has three of the School's students working there at the moment, while another student wrote the submission for a local finalist, Ballina Manor.

"I think that's a good indication of the quality of students we're sending into industry," he said.

"The award is also a recognition of the work we do with industry, through our industry partnerships. They include the Hotel School in partnership with BT and Intercontinental Hotel; partnership with the Club Managers Association, which we do a joint degree in Club and Gaming Management with; and also the Pacific Asia Tourism Association, with whom we do our executive development program every year."

Southern Cross University was the first university in Australia to offer degrees in tourism and hotel and catering management in 1989, while about 30 universities now had offerings in tourism.

"This award shows we're still at the forefront," Mr Hobson said.

Ninety five per cent of graduates are employed at the time of leaving university. The successful six-month industry placement program was instrumental in securing these positions, Mr Hobson said. Industry placements within the degree account for 80 per cent of student employment.

For more information contact Mr Perry Hobson, School of Tourism and Hospitality Management, Ph: 02 6620 3257, or Sara Crowe in the Media Unit at Southern Cross University, Ph: 02 6620 3144 or 0417 236 154.