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Local knowledge a valuable resource for students

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Zuleika Henderson
Published
15 January 2009
Around 100 Thai students have arrived at Southern Cross University, to learn how business and tourism are done – Gold Coast and Tweed style.

The students, who are studying Southern Cross University Masters degrees run through Naresuan University in Bangkok by the University’s Graduate College of Management and School of Tourism and Hospitality Management, are balancing lectures with excursions to destinations such as the Gold Coast Convention and Exhibition Centre, Sheraton Mirage, Versace Hotel, Billabong, Salt, and Sea World to uncover the secrets of the region’s success.

Graduate College of Management lecturer Susan Vinnicombe said her students were accessing local talent as part of a unit of study on entrepreneurship.

“Entrepreneurs have played a pivotal role in the development of the Gold Coast, so it is the ideal place for students to gain a practical insight into the key techniques of successful business people,” said Ms Vinnicombe.

“We are examining the case histories of some of the entrepreneurs who have left their mark on the Gold Coast, including Keith Williams at Sea World and CEO of Professional Investment Services Robbie Bennetts, who has also given some of his time to meet the students and share some of his tips first hand.

“Many of our students are small business owners themselves, so we expect that they will be carefully examining business practices for ideas that could be incorporated into the organisations they are currently working in.”

Dr Peter Wynn-Moylan, lecturer for the School of Tourism and Hospitality Management students agreed the region offered some rich pickings for students on a quest for knowledge.

“From a tourism point of view, there is vast experience and knowledge on the Gold Coast and Tweed, because the area has been a hotspot for tourism for so long,” said Dr Wynn-Moylan.

“Compared to the tourism industry in Asia, the client base is more varied and highly international.

“By visiting places like the Gold Coast Convention and Exhibition Centre, students have the opportunity to observe an operation that is small enough for them to be able to get an understanding of, yet is highly professional at the same time.

“It’s one of the strengths of Southern Cross University’s courses in Bangkok – seeing the theories put into practice is like the cherry on top for the students.”

Staff and Thai students from Southern Cross University’s School of Tourism and Hospitality Management will be available for photos and interviews at the Gold Coast Convention and Exhibition Centre at 11am (Qld time) today, Thursday 15 January. Please contact Zuleika Henderson on 07 5506 9385 or 0408 644533. Photo: Thai students from Southern Cross University’s Graduate College of Management visit Professional Investment Services at the Corporate Centre in Bundall on the Gold Coast (high resolution image available on request).

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