The idea is to prepare students for life on the job.
Mumbai, March 17, 2019: They used to learn about wine from textbooks and bake in the college lab. Now, hotel management and hospitality students are running their own hotels on campus, putting together wine lists and crafting menus at their own restaurants according to hindustantimes.com
At Lovely Professional University (LPU), there’s a 35-room Uni Hotel run by hospitality students, where they can practise what they learnt in their classrooms and get some paid, real-world experience. Some students take charge of housekeeping, others handle the front desk and help guests check in; at the restaurant, they experiment with different cuisines.
At Manipal’s Welcomgroup hotel management school, students have courses on wine and wine-and-food pairings conducted by experts from the International Sommelier Guild in the US. At Ashok Institute of Hospitality and Tourism Management, youngsters run a mocktail bar and multi-cuisine restaurant attached to a hotel.
“As more students aim to study abroad, institutes back home are striving to be at par with international hotel management colleges,” says Janhavi Ruparel, institutional consultant at overseas education consultancy The Red Pen. “New facilities like these make interviews and practical tests easier, also for students looking to pursue a career abroad.”
In addition to the 35 rooms, Uni Hotel in Jalandhar has a restaurant, a gym and conference facilities. It is open only to university guests.
“Working at the hotel is optional for LPU students. “Some take it up as a part-time job or internship,” says Pratham Mittal, head of new initiatives at the institute. “There is a limit on how many hours a student may work so that it doesn’t clash with their lectures and recreation time. We also get interns from other institutes. We pay each student between Rs 800 to Rs 1,200 a day. Actual management of the hotel — in areas such as maintenance, upkeep, inventory, etc — is outsourced by the university.”
Guests include recruiters in, parents visiting for admission queries and even students from other universities visiting for contests, conferences or general enquiries.
Before the hotel was set up, students learned theories in classes and interned during their vacations. “And that was the only time when they practiced their skills,” Mittal says.
Now, the hotel management institute takes up the first three floors of its 10-storey structure, and the rest is the hotel.