SA Deputy Minister of Tourism, Ms Tokozile Xasa
Inspiring life after college
The South African College of Tourism was recently visited by the South African Deputy Minister of Tourism, Ms Tokozile Xasa, to spread the message of equality of women and inspire our graduates in training. In the wake of South Africa signing up for the UN International Woman’s Day Commemoration, this year entitled, Equality for Woman is Progress for All: Inspiring Change, Ms Xasa spoke to this theme, as it is the focus of the College's training programme.
Deputy-Minister Xasa encouraged the students to make the most of the wonderful opportunity afforded to them by the College. Like Dr Anton Rupert, who founded the College, she firmly believes in the famous words: educate a woman and you educate a nation.
The Deputy Minister of Tourism - as the sixth of seven siblings who was raised by a single mother, and then from the age of 10 by family members when her mother passed away - said that the education the students were receiving would serve as a very powerful weapon in their quest to escape deprived backgrounds.
Her advice to the students was to not think of themselves as just waitresses or chefs, but as entrepreneurs in the making.
The inspirational story of one of the 2012 graduates, Bwalya, as enthusiastically shared by her, clearly mirrors this sentiment:
“Since leaving the college in 2012 with not just my certificate but also an award in front office, life has been amazing as each year progresses.
In February 2013, I started to work for a tour operator firm till May when I applied for an unpaid internship in the front office department at Intercontinental Hotel Lusaka - a 5 star hotel where I worked to the best of my abilities. I gave it a 101 % effort.
Upon completion, I stayed home for a month before being called back to the hotel for a job interview for the club lounge (VIP lounge) attendant position, of which I was successful. I worked directly under the front office manager for an exact period of one year. With all the skills I learnt from the college, I managed to work well in my job. Mrs. Willemse taught me well to be courteous and Mr Knoetze taught me excellent food and beverage services. I set up for breakfast week after week on my own and handled the bar on my own too. Chef Albert’s lessons came in handy when the chef was too busy; I was able to help out with the omelets J with ease. And of course Mr. van der Westhuizen taught me to work in a clean environment.
Moving on, June 2014 brought even greater things for me. I am currently working for Zambia’s largest electricity company, ZESCO, as a national call center agent under customer services.
Thank you so much SACT for the great professional skills I learnt from you. I am forever grateful for the opportunity you gave me to study with you. I hope that maybe one day, the college will offer degree programs. GOD BLESS YOU”.
With hard work, determination and the empowering training offered at the SA College of Tourism, graduates like Bwalya have the best chance of creating a sustainable future. Thank you to all the friends and supporters of the college who make this mission possible.
Bwalya at her graduation