Nov 4, 2015 | News | 0 comments

Running Start for Careers Students Get Hands-on Hospitality Experience

Mayor Berry speaks to future leaders of the hospitality industry in Albuquerque

ALBUQUERQUE, NM – Today, Mayor Richard J. Berry spoke to a group of students about the significant impact the hospitality industry has on Albuquerque’s and New Mexico’s economy. The students are part of Mayor Berry’s Running Start for Careers Initiative and are enrolled in the Hospitality and Tourism course, which helps them get an industry-taught insight into a career in hospitality.

During the tour of Hotel Albuquerque, a Heritage Hotels property, students heard from various speakers that gave the students an insight into the inner workings of operating a hotel. Students also participated in a trolley tour hosted by ABQ Trolley Company which highlighted all the sights and activities that Albuquerque has to offer visitors. The day finished with the students returning to the hotel to get the full experience of hospitality through a plated dinner.

“Running Start for Careers is an innovative program that provides students the opportunity to learn real life career skills from industry experts while allowing industry to teach their desired skills to their future workplace associates. It’s a win-win situation that helps all those involved while adding value to the local economy,” said Mayor Berry.

The purpose of this event is to showcase the new future of Running Start for Careers courses. As part of the change, students will have more on-site, hands-on experiences and be able to discuss lessons on a first-hand basis and the type of engagement that a classroom setting cannot provide.

Mayor Berry has asked local hospitality related businesses to come forward and offer internships under the program to give more students the opportunity to gain this knowledge and skill set. Running Start for Careers will have impacted well over 600 students’ education by the end of the current semester. As the program continues to grow by offering more classes and internship opportunities, it is clear the potential impact is far greater.

“We’re very excited at CNM to support our City’s efforts to enhance the hospitality and tourism industry here in Albuquerque,” said CNM President Katharine Winograd. “Together with the City of Albuquerque, we’re committed to providing a high quality hospitality and tourism education that’s combined with valuable work experiences. Providing students with a great education and internships in this field will ultimately help our graduates advance Albuquerque’s tourism appeal across the country and the world.”

The program Running Start for Careers, created by Mayor Richard J. Berry, allows high school sophomores, juniors and seniors to earn dual-credit hours toward graduation while obtaining valuable work skills and on-the-job training in high demand industries.  Students graduate with an industry certificate showing pre-apprenticeship or career development training that could be submitted to potential employers.  The program incorporates technical training, real world hands on experience, and soft skills without burdening the state with large capital investments or operational costs.