MSc. Tourism and Hospitality Management
Mona School of Business and Management
University of the West Indies, Mona Campus, Jamaica
I felt impressed to pursue the MSc in Tourism and Hospitality Management because my work experiences were predominantly in the areas of customer service and tourism offered the most dynamic environment in which I could use this experience and apply my administrative skills.
Since joining the programme I realized that it was indeed the best fit as it also offered me the opportunity to enlarge my personal passion of wellness in support of Wellness Tourism and apply former skill sets in plant tissue culture in support of Agro Tourism.
My primary research objective is to identify the motivators of wellness tourists’ and to match them with the facilities that are available in Jamaica. In this regard, I envision being a wellness coach in this globally expansive market. I would also contribute at the academic level by guiding the creation of wellness facilities using skills in project management. This would provide opportunities for product differentiation that would improve the country’s competitiveness.
The grant also supports an opportunity for graduate entrepreneurship by allowing me to create a validated business model for the establishment of a plant tissue culture laboratory to support Agro -Tourism. This proposal enabled me to be among the semi-finalist of UWI Venture Competition 2013 as well as the National Business Model Competition, 2014. The rationale is that hotels are very selective in purchasing produce and the supply is often inconsistent. Almost 52% of fresh produce used is imported and this also exasperates the tourism leakage rate. Small farmers are among the stakeholders who could derive more benefits from the sector and so this proposition will assist them, increase our export potential, provide raw material for the productive sector and improve the standard of living of many communities.
Being a recipient of a CTO grant for 2014 is a catalyst for achieving my careers goals and an opportunity for national development. It will facilitate connectivity by impacting services in my organization, support an important area of research as well as provide a business model that can provide sustainability in tourism and agriculture, the most important sectors in the Jamaican economy.