Class of 2020 UWTSD International Hotel Management graduates celebrate success


Congratulations to UWTSD International Hotel Management (IHM) graduates Molly Thomas, Laurence Blake, Jaliya De Silva, Daniel Payne and Sheikh S Ahmed!


Congratulations to UWTSD International Hotel Management (IHM) graduates Molly Thomas, Laurence Blake, Jaliya De Silva, Daniel Payne and Sheikh S Ahmed!

They are amongst the class of 2020 UWTSD graduates celebrating success from the University’s IHM programme which through an innovative industry collaboration combines vocational training at the Marriott Hotel with academic study on campus at UWTSD.

This exciting programme is the result of a close partnership between Marriott Hotels, widely recognised as one of the world’s leading hotel brands and University of Wales Trinity Saint David.

Samantha Birdsell, Programme Manager, International Hotel Management said: “I would like to congratulate our International Hotel Management graduates of 2020. This dedicated group of students have all worked so hard over the past two years, all of whom have been a pleasure to teach and support through their academic studies and on hotel placement at Marriott. They have all grown in the knowledge, understanding and experience of the hotel industry and look forward to promising careers ahead for them. I am so very proud of this group having completed their final term remotely and so excited to announce that 50 % of the group were awarded First Class Honours; 30% awarded a 2:1 and 20% were awarded a 2:2 classification. Good luck to all of our Graduates of 2020!”

Michael Downie, General Manager of Swansea and Cardiff Marriott said: “I’d like to express our thanks to the students on behalf of the whole hotel, they were a pleasure to work with and loved seeing their enthusiastic approach to learning and applying their skills in the business. Their positivity and hard work in the business does not go unnoticed, and I know our managers and team members thoroughly enjoy working alongside them.

“It gives us great pride to play a part in their journey and are extremely happy to see the great results they have achieved. Well Done!!  The students add a great dynamic to our business and the partnership with UWTSD continues to produce great talent for the future of our hospitality industry, and it’s great to be a part of that talent development. We also extend our thanks to the Programme Directors and lecturers, who work with us collaboratively in planning and executing the programme to a high level.

“We wish the students the very best for the future and hope to see some of them wearing a Marriott Name tag very soon!”

Molly Thomas said: “I chose to join the International Hotel Management course after working in restaurants and hotels for over three years as I thought it would be a great way to enhance my knowledge of the hospitality industry and widen my career opportunities.

“By having a combination of theoretical and practical modules we were able to see first-hand and implement lessons we had learnt in the classroom. The placement at Swansea Marriott allowed us to integrate into busy departments and take part in the daily operations, which was an invaluable experience.

“Field trips allowed us to gain an understanding of the vast array of opportunities that lay ahead of us from boutique hotels in Tenby to Marriott giants at Heathrow. Throughout the course my passion for the industry has continuously grown and whilst my next adventure is still unclear my hospitality career is just beginning, and I can’t wait to see where it takes me.”

Laurence Blake said: I initially chose to study the International Hotel Management course to gain valuable knowledge and insight into the hotel industry. Throughout this course I have been challenged and I have gained essential knowledge and practical skills which will benefit my future career.

“It has really appealed to me that the course has combined the academic and work placement learning environments.  The placement learning at Swansea Marriott Hotel has challenged me through individual learning and project working with the students on the course.  We have taken field trips to London to where we have had insights into various types of hotels and their operations.”

Jaliya De Silva said: “I have been working in the hotel industry for over 5 years and wanted to study for a degree in hotel management to enhance my career to the next level. The UWTSD hotel Management programme offers fantastic course modules which provide a broad scope of theoretical and practical knowledge. The degree programme has a close collaboration with the Marriott international and upon completion of their degree, students get to apply for the Marriott voyage programme around the globe and take up positions as future managers in the industry

I wanted to attend a university in the heart of the city centre where I could meet people from all over the world, so that’s why I chose UWTSD and the lecturers also have experience of working in the hotel industry.  Their knowledge helps your learning journey and you can apply the theory that you learny into real world situations in the hotel business.

During my placement I had the opportunity to work in both Cardiff and Swansea Marriott hotels and the management helped and encouraged me to apply my knowledge to real work-based situations. I would say the experience I gained during the placement has been absolutely priceless.

Upon completion of the BA hotel management degree, I am now motivated to pursue my MBA for the fulfilment of my career in hotel industry. I would recommend this degree programme to anyone who wants to work in the hotel industry."

Daniel Payne said: “I chose the course to challenge myself. I have a passion for people and travel and felt that the course suited my characteristics. I have loved my time at UWTSD. The course was challenging, however, the support from the lecturers was amazing and I never had far to turn to ask any queries or questions. The placement in Marriott really broadened my skillset and it was truly eye-opening to see how such a large chain manages itself. We also had time for field trips to other areas of Wales and to London and Birmingham. These allowed me to see how the industry worked outside of Swansea and were great fun at the same time! 

“Having completed this course I now look forward to starting employment for the Retreats group in Pembrokeshire. I managed to work there over my summer whilst in Uni and after meeting and working with the team I felt that it was the perfect fit!”

Sheikh S Ahmed said: “I chose the BA (Hons) International Hotel Management course at UWTSD because I wanted to take myself to the next level for my chosen career path as well as personal development.

“I enjoyed the course especially the placement at Marriott and the field trips to London and coastal areas in Wales where we were exposed to tremendous insights into the industry and beautiful sights.

“I plan to continue with further education in the same subject with UWTSD and look forward to more positive experiences and knowledge enhancement - The course met more than my expectations. I most definitely recommend the BA (Hons) International Hotel Management at UWTSD!”

Congratulations to UWTSD International Hotel Management (IHM) graduates Molly Thomas, Laurence Blake, Jaliya De Silva, Daniel Payne and Sheikh S Ahmed!

Further Information

Rebecca Davies

Swyddog Gweithredol Cysylltiadau â’r Wasg a’r Cyfryngau

Executive Press and Media Relations Officer

Cyfathrebu Corfforaethol a Chysylltiadau Cyhoeddus

Corporate Communications and PR

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