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[dropcap]N[/dropcap]ew Delhi: Shri K.J. Alphons, Minister of State (IC) for Tourism presented the awards to the winners of ‘All India Essay Competition’ for Schools across India on ‘Hospitality Education & Career’ at a function organized by the National Council for Hotel Management & Catering Technology (NCHMCT), Noida. NCHMCT is the apex body under the Ministry of Tourism coordinating hospitality education in the country.
The top prize has been won by A.Gayatri of Guntur Subbiah Pillai T.Nagar Girl’s Higher Secondary School, Chennai winning cash prize of Rs.40,000/- followed by Nikhi Khambhatwala from Bharuch, Gujarat Rs.30,000/- and Anabil Goswami from Sonitpur, Assam Rs.20,000/. In addition, schools were also honoured for encouraging participation through award of Golden and Silver Plaques while consolation prizes of Rs.10,000/- were given away to three schools from each of the four regions.
Addressing on the occasion, Shri K.J. Alphons said that the country is abuzz with the recent figures released by the Ministry of Tourism for 2017 wherein foreign tourist arrivals have been recorded at crossing the 10 million mark for the first time with an annual growth of 15.6 percent in 2017. Tourism in India alone earned USD 27.7 billion (Rupees 1,80,379 crores) in 2017. The Tourism sector contributes 6.88 per cent of the country’s GDP. It contributes 12.36% in terms of total employment. Resultantly, this sector is poised for phenomenal growth in the coming years owing to the new holistic policies of the Government, especially on grant of e-visa and visa on arrival for specified countries. Greater number of foreign tourists is now attracted towards India because of its incredible cultural vibe, scenic natural locations, wildlife, religious circuits and more recently growth of the medical and wellness segment. Indian cuisine is now globally accepted, where foreigners are willing to indulge in sampling hot and spicy curries including the regional cuisines of India.
The gathering comprised senior officials from Ministry of Tourism, students, teachers and Principals from All India schools, the IHM fraternity and members from the hospitality industry of private and public sector.
highlight of the program was the attendance of Padamshri Chef Sanjeev Kapoor, also an alumni of IHM under NCHMCT, who motivated and encouraged the young students into taking up hospitality as a promising career which is full of thrills, excitement and gives you an excellent opportunity for cross cultural interaction.
National Council for Hotel Management & Catering Technology (NCHMCT) is the apex body under the Ministry of Tourism coordinating hospitality education in the country. Initially with only four Institutes of Hotel Management in 1962, today the numbers have grown to 72 Institutes- both Government institutes and private institutes, across India, under its academic umbrella. Each year, nearly 12,000 trained students pass from the various 11 specialized courses offered by the Institutes of Hotel Management, who get readily picked up by the industry including hotels, restaurants, retail sector, airline, shipping, railways etc. while several become entrepreneurs or opt for higher studies.
In order to bring about greater awareness about hospitality programs offered by IHMs, the NCHMCT for the first time organized an ‘All India Essay Competition’ for Schools across India on ‘Hospitality Education & Career’ in December 2017. Through wide publicity, NCHMCT received overwhelming response from young students of 11-12th grade classes who enthusiastically described their interest in hotel management as a career option as against more traditional one like engineering, medicine, IT, etc . The essays were scrutinized and short listed at regional level and the finalists were reassessed by and an expert panel at the NCHMCT-NOIDA.