One of this island’s educational institutions could in the near future produce a General Manager of the soon-to-be-constructed Wyndham Resort‘s Sam Lord’s Castle).
Eduardo Cruz del Rio, Wyndham’s Vice President of Operations for Latin America, operators of the Sam Lords Castle, shared this view yesterday at a meeting with some of the island’s senior education officials.
In attendance were representatives of the Ministry of Education, Science, Technology and Innovation, The University of the West Indies, the Barbados Community College, the Hospitality Institute, TVET Council Barbados, the Confucius Institute, the Barbados Vocational Training Board and principals of Christ Church Foundation, Lodge, Princess Margaret and Grantley Adams Memorial secondary schools.
The Wyndham executive expressed his company’s desire to work with the institutions in the areas of internship and apprenticeship. He told educators that selected students who showed high levels of commitment and proficiency could have opportunities to work elsewhere in the brand’s 8,000 properties worldwide.
Acting General Manager of Sam Lord’s Property Development Inc., a subsidiary of the Barbados Tourism Investment Inc., Michael Phillips, in explaining the reason for the meeting, stated: “We believe that a strategic orientation to manpower planning is required for a project of this size and complexity. We thought it necessary to reach out to secondary and tertiary institutions.”
Mr. Phillips said that the possibility of integrating Sam Lord’s Castle’s protocols into school projects was being explored in order to prepare students for the positions that would become available.
He noted that discussions were held concerning the use of the competency-based CVQ certification as a key mechanism for instructing and evaluating secondary school students to determine their readiness for work in a luxury hotel environment.
“Our discussions with tertiary level institutions are ongoing and the institutions have expressed a degree of enthusiasm for this demand-driven training approach which, like our overture to the agriculture sector, aligns closely with our desire to ensure that the broadest possible base of Barbadians become beneficiaries of the redevelopment of Sam Lord’s Castle,” the official said.
Principal of the Grantley Adams Memorial Secondary, Dennis Browne, said that his school, along with the Princess Margaret, Lodge and Christ Church Foundation secondary schools, were delighted that Sam Lord’s Property Development and Wyndham had reached out to them.
“In fact, this is the first time that this has been done and we will work tirelessly to ensure that this is a success as the programme provides a real opportunity for our students,” he added.
Sam Lord’s Castle is anticipated to be a flagship Wyndham Resort and is expected to employ up to 1,000 staff. Wyndham Hotel Group is the world’s largest and most diverse hotel business, with a global portfolio of more than 8,000 hotels under 15 brands, and over 697,600 rooms in 77 countries on six continents.
Wyndham Worldwide is headquartered in Parsippany, New Jersey, and has more than 40,000 employees around the world.