During a press conference at the Institute of Tourism Studies (ITS) campus, Minister for Tourism and Consumer Protection Julia Farrugia Portelli announced the launch of 15 scholarships in relation to the newly launched Master of Arts in Heritage Interpretation course offered by ITS.
Minister Farrugia Portelli acknowledged the profession of a tourist guide as being one of paramount importance to the tourism industry. “The launch of these scholarships will not only support this profession but will promote further specialisation within the tourism industry,” said the minister. Through this golden opportunity, current tourist guides will not only pursue their career personally but the knowledge and skills they achieve will be beneficial for the tourism industry in general, added Minister Farrugia Portelli.
ITS CEO Pierre Fenech said that ITS not only wants to increase the number of tour guides but also offer a progression route for current tourist guides to be able to achieve a level 7 certification. This programme offers tailor-made learning to those who already work within the culture and heritage tourism industry and to those who aspire to specialise in the interpretation of specific sites and artefacts.
ITS Chairman Carlo Micallef highlighted the important role that tourist guides have in Malta’s tourism industry in that guides are a key source of information for the large majority of visiting tourists. The way that tourist guides explain and showcase the attractions of our Islands, the passion with which they tell the Malta story and the insider tips they share with their clients go long way towards ensuring that the tourists that visit the Maltese islands enjoy an exceptional holiday experience to remember.
Minister Farrugia Portelli commended ITS for all the opportunities and initiatives that are constantly taken to attract more students and potential employees in the tourism sector.