Out of this world qualification to appeal to theme park fanatics

“The new Foundation degree is the latest in a series of specialist awards that have been developed in collaboration with major employers to upskill their workforce. Students will work at front line roles within retail, hotels and park operations in their first year of the programme and at team leader level in year 2."

Dean of the Faculty of Business Education and Law, Professor Susan Foreman

January 7, 2015: Top tourist attraction Alton Towers Resort has joined forces with Staffordshire University to offer a unique degree course which helps students get to grips with every aspect of their business.

20 students will be recruited to the new Foundation Degree in Visitor Attraction and Resort Management at Staffordshire University’s Business School beginning in September 2015.

The Foundation degree is a work-based qualification which combines two years study with 18 weeks paid work experience where students will learn about key areas of the business including operations and commercial management; strategic management; health and safety marketing and digital communications; financial and human resource management and customer service.

Students will then have the opportunity to put their learning into practice during key seasonal peaks.

Guy Brazier, HR Director for Alton Towers Resort said the leisure industry was worth £1.6 billion locally in Staffordshire and £74 billion nationally representing 7 per cent of all UK employment, and therefore deserved be taken more seriously.

“We believe this course will offer students an amazing opportunity to develop their career potential to work in the leisure industry, which is an ever growing sector.

“We’ve worked alongside Staffordshire University on a number of training and development projects in recent years, but this course is really the culmination of everything we’ve been aiming for.  It will give those that complete it a credible background that will make them far more attractive to prospective employers and of course we are hoping it will act as a catalyst for our own workforce to support our succession strategy.

He added: “This is a huge step forward for us and we are eagerly anticipating our first delegation of students during our next season.  We have everything in place to support them on what will be a challenging experience and we are very confident that this course will quickly become a hugely popular one for the University.”

Dean of the Faculty of Business Education and Law, Professor Susan Foreman said: “The collaboration builds upon a strong partnership between Alton Towers Resort and Staffordshire University. The Resort already employs many of our students on a part-time basis and we are delighted to be working with them to develop people who will acquire a comprehensive understanding of their business and their business needs through this unique award.

“The new Foundation degree is the latest in a series of specialist awards that have been developed in collaboration with major employers to upskill their workforce.
Students will work at front line roles within retail, hotels and park operations in their first year of the programme and at team leader level in year 2. As an alternative to full time employment, they will also have the opportunity to top up to a full degree on completion of the Foundation Degree."

For course related inquiries contact Linda Phillips, Academic Group Leader on  01782 294184 or email L.A.Phillips@staffs.ac.uk 

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