Travel and Tourism students learn about career take off

24th January 2022

Barnsley College Travel and Tourism students have been hearing from a range of guest speakers as part of Travel and Tourism Industry Week.

The talks allowed students to explore potential careers within the sector, whilst developing the skills they need for Higher Education or employment.

The main activity of the week was a gripping talk by Suzanne Morgan, a knowledgeable Airline Captain, who shared why she chose this line of work, what qualifications and training she needed, how her career has progressed and what the job entails. Her story took students on an inspiring and entertaining journey following her commitment and achievements.

Suzanne said: “I hope my talk about my path to becoming an Airline Captain widens people’s horizons and lets them see what they could do. Don’t be daunted by your chosen career. Just complete one step at a time until you have reached your goal."

Students also heard from Rebecca Lougheed, an experienced Airbus (330/380) Pilot, who shared her journey in aviation, her role as a pilot and the careers available within the industry. Rebecca went into detail about the practices she uses, what her role involves, the nature of the work and gave an insight into what decisions pilots make on a day-to-day basis.

Other guest speakers included Leslie Hurst, previous owner of Siblu Holiday Villages in France. Students were taken through the various transferable skills Leslie developed during his career, and how this helped him run the village for over 11 years. He shared his business background knowledge before talking about the work involved in running and owning a huge holiday park franchise.

Savannah Gillow, former Flight Attendant for Norwegian Airlines, shared with the students the different career paths available within Cabin Crew, she also shared the strict code of conduct they must adhere to, recruitment process, training and what she did on a day-to-day basis.

Dan Mason, Airfield Operation Manager at Inverness Airport, delivered an informative workshop around all the careers available at an airport. The talk covered the logistics surrounding an airport, customers’ expectations and how COVID-19 has impacted the travel industry.

Dan said: “Travel and tourism is now an essential and increasing part of the UK economy and will undoubtedly play a significant role in the post-Covid recovery. Having the opportunity to talk to students about this exciting industry allows us to show just how diverse the available roles are and what incredible opportunities there are for employment within the sector. I’d encourage anyone who has an interest in working in a fast-paced, customer-focussed industry to consider travel and tourism as an exciting career choice.”

Over the course of the week, students heard from other speakers from a range of professional backgrounds. This included Rachel Kenwright, from Yorkshire Wildlife Park; Joanne and Nicola, from Barnsley Museums; Rebecca Marsh, Owner of Global Convoy; and Shanice Grant-Barnet and Thomas Raffan from British Airways. 

The sessions were organised by Julia Davies, Talent United and Enterprise Officer at Barnsley College.

Julia said: “We had a busy week with lots of inspirational guests. We enjoyed welcoming speakers from across the UK, giving students some genuine insight into a variety of careers within the sector.

“The College continues to transform lives and help students to fulfil their full potential by providing them with an outstanding experience and I would like to thank all the guest speakers for taking the time to speak to our students, I’m already looking forward to arranging more guest speaker sessions and next year’s event.”

For more information about Travel and Tourism courses on offer at Barnsley College visit or email

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