In 2017, Israel was visited by an all-time record high of 3.6 million tourists. This growth is expected to continue in the years to come within the context of the broader global expansion in the tourism, vacation, business, and culture sectors. The trend will be manifested in more low-cost companies and foreign airlines operating in Israel, open-skies agreements that make air travel to Israel cheaper, hotels on all levels, tourist sites, increased tourism awareness, and destinations.
It is a trend that will require professionals in the wide range of specialties that the tourist sector has to offer, including the management of hotels and international chains, airlines, local and global tourism companies, tourism operators, tourism marketing, and travel agencies. Kinneret College recognized this need two decades ago when it opened a Bachelor’s Degree program in hotel and tourism management, which has trained hundreds of professionals and the future generation of managers, planners, and decision makers in the Israeli tourism industry. Run in cooperation with state tourism bodies (such as the Ministry of Tourism, the Israel Hotel Association, the Israel Association of Travel Agencies and Consultants, and the Israel Incoming Tour Operators Association), this program integrates content from the fields of tourism, hotel management, the culinary arts, aviation and travel. It also provides practical specialization in tourism sites and hotels and enables students to begin working in the sector while studying. Today, program graduates are employed by hotels and tourism sites; by travel companies and airlines; in the field of marketing and in the public sector; and by non-profit organizations and tourism administrations.
Now, as the sector continues to grow more complex and dynamic every year, Kinneret College is taking its professional training one step further with a Master’s Degree program in senior tourism and hotel management that is designed to meet not only local needs but global needs as well. According to Dr. Alon Gelbman, the head of the Kinneret College’s department of Tourism and Hotel Management, this need has created a demand for senior managers. For this reason, the new program, which is taught entirely in English, focuses on two principal aspects of the sector: globalization and advanced management strategies in the global arena.
To enable managers and professionals from within the sector, individuals interested in developing a management career in the sector, and holders of undergraduate degrees from other fields to continue working while they take part, the program is consolidated into one day of study per week (not including makeup sessions) over a period of two years. The topics covered include: management strategies for complex systems in the global realm of tourism and hotel management, fundamentals of economics and the financing of tourism businesses, and international digital marketing in the tourism and hotel management sector. Students are taught in small groups distinguished by a personal atmosphere, under the supervision of a teaching faculty that consists of leading scholars and experts with extensive practical experience.
Dr. Gelbman adds that the new program, which is taught in the international tourism language of English, is also meant for students from abroad. “The unique subject matter facilitates, for the first time, specialization that will meet the demand for experts capable of managing systems operating at the highest levels in the world. In addition to its breathtaking location on the shores of the Sea of Galilee (Lake Kinneret), at the heart of a first-rate tourism area, Kinneret College promises a spectacular future for its graduates – one that interfaces with the global trends that offer a captivating management horizon in a leading, and fascinating, economic sector.”
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This article was written in cooperation with Kinneret College.
Kinneret College: A spectacular professional horizon in one day of study per week over the course of two years.