This morning, we celebrated with the 13 graduates of our most recent Hospitality Training Program (HTP) cycle, which prepares non-native English speakers for rewarding careers in the hospitality industry. Today’s celebration marked the end of the intensive 6-week program during which students had to juggle their familial responsibilities, their employment schedule, and HTP’s 20 hours per week of classroom instruction.
Representing 9 different countries, this graduating class is now prepared to explore career opportunities in Boston’s robust hotel system. Thanks in large part to the city’s strong economic rebound, Boston area hotels saw substantial gains in occupancy rates, room rates, and revenue last year that largely outpaced gains in other U.S. cities. Boston hotels’ occupancy rates were 10% higher in 2010 than they were in 2009, and revenue per available room increased 13% during the same time period, a gain second only to hotels in New Orleans. These market improvements bode well for our graduates who, despite coming from different cultural and linguistic backgrounds, learned the value of the collaborative approach to problem-solving, the standards of customer service, and the myriad career paths available to them in the industry.
We were very happy to welcome industry representatives from the Westin Boston Waterfront, InterContinental Boston, and Career Source, and we look forward to strengthening our partnership in the months ahead. Of course, HTP would not be as successful as it is were it not for our dedicated instructors and volunteers who have designed and implemented a program with a stellar job placement rate of over 90%. But, today belonged to our graduates. Congratulations Shanshan, Kaoutar, Iba, Bouchaib, Artur, Tek, Redha, Youness, Ousmane, Ismail, Jit, Abdelilah, and Paula!
For those interested in learning more about the program, please attend one of our HTP orientations, held every Tuesday at 11 am at our One Milk Street office in Boston.