Published on Thursday, March 19, 2009

New Zealand nurtures adventure students

QUEENSTOWN - Adventure tourism operations are set to benefit from the skills of graduates from New Zealand’s first Diploma of Adventure Tourism Management.

Run by Queenstown Resort College (QRC), the two-year diploma is the only one of its kind in New Zealand.

It develops successful future adventure tourism managers by blending business management and leadership skills with practical work experience and adventure education.

The new diploma has sparked plenty of interest within New Zealand and abroad, with approximately 70 percent Kiwi and 30 percent international students completing the first course.

The17 students will officially graduate along with 24 Diploma of Hospitality students this Saturday.

The course is based in Queenstown, New Zealand's premier tourist resort and adventure capital, where students learn from experienced industry practitioners.

As part of their diploma students receive six months of fully paid industry training with an adventure tourism business.

This year, as a result of a new strategic partnership between QRC and NZSki Ltd, a specifically developed intake of students with a snow industry focus will be guaranteed a work placement at Coronet Peak, The Remarkables or Mt Hutt for a winter season.

Dr John Cossens, Queenstown Resort College’s Head of Tourism, said the calibre of his graduating students bodes well for the future of the industry.

“After teaching and getting to know these students I feel confident in saying that New Zealand’s adventure tourism future certainly looks bright with the wealth of very talented and motivated young people going out into the work force.

“I think they will really make a difference to our industry both here and overseas.

Graduates of QRC’s Diploma of Adventure Tourism Management can continue on to a Bachelor Degree at Thompson Rivers University (TRU) in B.C, Canada.

TRU is Canada's leading specialist in adventure tourism education and training.

For more information about the Diploma of Adventure Tourism Management visit

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  • brilliant

    Finally the industry can get people trained for this purpose, not just interested people who have to be trained from scratch. In Nepal, where my business is located, there is a big need (as opposed to demand) for professionals in adventure of all types... soft, medium and hard core. We have tons of trained guides, raft guides, paraglider pilots, mountain bike specialists, etc... but all of them have learnt it on the job (which mind you is not a bad way to learn) but there is the other side of things... customer service, leadership skills, etc. which is greatly lacking. Our guides are excellent in just that... but what is required is leadership. Hopefully a program such as this can produce future leaders, and not just workers... that is what the industry requires! This is not a place to advertise, but Nepal would be more than willing to take in a few interns... I know my company would!

    By Raj Gyawali, Friday, March 20, 2009

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