Runshaw College students are already preparing for their summer holiday breaks – by booking getaways through their classmates.
Travel and tourism students at the Langdale Road campus in Leyland are gaining invaluable experience working in the college’s own travel agency.
The newly-opened Travel Hub allows students to gain work experience in their chosen field, whilst others are benefitting from using the facility to book trips away.
Part-time lecturer Anna Mollart, who works for Hays Travel from home, helped set up the professional base at Runshaw as an extension to the business.
She works with the students to teach them how to organise holidays for fellow classmates and staff, and dozens of customers have already booked their breaks through the new facility.
Anna said: “Lots of students have booked their leaving holidays to celebrate the end of their exams, and Ayia Napa and Kavos are most popular.
“Some staff members have even booked their honeymoons with us, to places like Cyprus and Barbados, and some have booked London show breaks too.
“A dance school has booked a trip to Barcelona and some college excursions have been arranged, such as to an orphanage in Marrakech - and it’s only been open for a few weeks.”
The idea was first raised by the college a few years ago, which wanted the students to have first-hand experience working in a real-life travel agency, from dealing with customers to book-keeping.
Anna was able to bring the business to the campus, and the students take it in turns to work there during college hours, whilst also completing the course from the classroom.
Anna said: “We’re hoping to properly incorporate this into the course assessment at some point. but for now, it’s just a great way for the students to be hands on, and they’re loving it.
“I ask them to ring my regular clients and work out holiday costs and itineraries, as well as putting offers out and organising documents. They’ve been invaluable to me.”
Members of the public can also make use of the new facility, and can drop in on Thursdays, but Anna says the best way to get in touch is by emailing her, and she can dish the workload out to the students.
“If people email me their requirements, I can talk through the process with the students,” she said.
“It gives them a bit of time to get everything sorted out before they speak to the customers, and they can do it without the pressure of someone sitting there.
“Also, I can keep everything confidential. I don’t share customers’ personal details with the students.
The Travel Hub is proving to be a real success. The feedback from students has been fantastic, and the college can really see it growing.”
- Email email@example.com to book.