Students from Middlesbrough College checked in to Teesside’s largest hotel this week, but it was no vacation as the group rolled up their sleeves to help run the hotel.
Partnering for the sixth time, the four star Jurys Inn hosted 23 students to give them real-life catering and hospitality experience before they begin their chosen careers.
Jurys Inn staff welcomed students to the Fry Street hotel, taking on daily tasks alongside ‘staff buddies’ for two days this week, working the same shifts and gaining invaluable insight into how the busy hotel operates.
Hotel General Manager, Damon Roberts was pleased to reinstate the scheme this year, saying: “We enjoyed having students from Middlesbrough College with us again and we were pleased to share our experience and customer service focus with the students.
“They have been working in various departments throughout the hotel, ranging from manning the hotel and health club reception desks, serving in the bar, cooking in the kitchen and also ensuring the smooth running of our corporate events.
“This year the students’ have supported with the Institute of Measurement and Control Annual Dinner, hosting nearly 250 guests. From supporting with the initial setup and food preparation, to providing service on the evening; the students’ gained valuable experience in the operational running of a commercial event.
“Students continue to be the future of our industry and we are honoured to share our expertise.”
The students – who study catering, hospitality, travel and aviation courses – put into practice the skills and knowledge they have been taught by their tutors, most of whom come from industry backgrounds.
During a busy few days they hit the ground running – helping to keep the 17 meeting rooms serviced and running smoothly and picking up valuable experience along the way. The Jurys Inn programme is just one of a number of work placements that help students get to grips with this fast-paced industry.
Matthew Hodgson, who studies Level 3 Professional Cookery at the College said: “The experience has given me a good insight into how a business of this size operates.
“I’ve had experience in service and food preparation at the hotel restaurant. It’s made me realise that a career in this industry is definitely right for me.”
This is the first year the hotel has also welcomed Travel and Aviation students, who have supported with the organisation of the annual dinner and other front of house services such as check-in at the reception area.
Rachel Lloyd, who studies Level 3 Aviation said: “This has been my first work placement and I’ve found it really rewarding.
“From organising paper work to greeting guests, I now feel more informed into the wide range of career opportunities in tourism when I finish my course.”
Industry Placement Coordinator, Matthew Chan added: “We saw a large number of students wanting to be involved in this year’s partnership with Jurys Inn.
“Experience is so important to compliment the work in the class room and we love working with respected local employers such as Jurys Inn.
“The purpose of the student takeover was to give students a taste of a career working in a real life, fast paced hospitality environment.
“Once again the experience has gone down really well with students and it’s great to have had travel and aviation students get involved for the first time ever.
“We look forward to renewing our partnership with the Jurys Inn again in the near future.”