Over 150 hospitality & tourism business leaders including restaurateurs, hoteliers and caterers from across the region will come together on 14th April at Hotel Novotel London Wembley to pledge career opportunities, apprenticeships and work placements for young jobseekers at the 40th Big Hospitality Conversation. The local businesses and young people will be joined by keynote speaker Steven Van Herwijnen, general manager of the Danubius Hotel.
The Big Hospitality Conversation is a nationwide campaign led by the British Hospitality Association in partnership with Springboard, National Apprenticeship Service and the Department for Work and Pensions. It offers a commitment to creating new career opportunities for 16-24 year olds. Over 57,000 job opportunities have so far been created at events like the one in Wembley and the aim is for the hospitality industry to create up to 60,000 jobs for young people by 2016.
Ufi Ibrahim, Chief Executive of the British Hospitality Association said: “It is important for our young people to know that they have options when it comes to careers in the hospitality industry. The Big Hospitality Conversation invites the youth to take advantage of the rapidly growing industry by offering the chance to meet great employers in the region and ultimately leave the day with career!”
The free, day-long event enables the region’s school leavers, college graduates and jobseekers to find out more about the hospitality industry, and businesses taking part will also be offering full and part-time jobs and apprenticeships on the day.
Working in collaboration with the North London Hoteliers Association, the Wembley Big Hospitality Conversation aims to highlight the extensive spectrum of careers in the hospitality industry. Panellists will discuss their work experiences in a variety of roles including HR and marketing fields alongside front-of-house and culinary positions.
“The Big Hospitality Conversation is a great opportunity for young people coming into our industry to get a real flavour and understanding of the entire scope of careers in hospitality. I believe people often underestimate the enormous impact service jobs have in the UK--especially London. From general positions to speciality fields, hospitality businesses are always looking for young people to employ,” said keynote speaker and general manager of the Danubius Hotel, Steven Van Herwijnen.
Anne Pierce, Chief Executive of Springboard, said: “We are delighted to be a part of the Big Hospitality Conversation in Wembley. As one of the founder partners of the Big Hospitality Conversation, Springboard is thrilled with the number of pledges the campaign has seen to date and our work with the BHA in bringing businesses and young people together. Work experience is a key factor in influencing a young person’s career choice and it’s vital that employers continue to offer and showcase the great career opportunities in hospitality, leisure and tourism.”