Resort college opens its doors to graduates

Celebrating higher education: From left, Study Queenstown's Aaron Halstead and Queenstown Resort College's Jacqui McLean and Charlie Phillips

The learning at Queenstown Resort College is getting higher.

The private tertiary college has just been approved to run its first degree-level course – a graduate diploma in tourism and hospitality management.

Currently, QRC offers Level 5 diplomas in both hospitality and adventure tourism management.

The new course, starting next April, offers a Level 7 qualification which is only open to students who already have a degree.

A one-year course, it includes a three-month or 200-hour workplace internship where students will have to complete a major industry project as well as get operational experience.

QRC boss Charlie Phillips says: “It’s not a common thing for an institution like ours to be offering Level 7.

“It’s a bit of a recognition of our quality and what we’ve done.”

He says the graduate diploma course will enhance Queenstown’s attraction as a serious study destination.

“This is also starting to create a bit more of a research culture.”

Phillips expects the students – there’ll be two intakes of 25 a year – will be aged from about 22 to 30.

As to what jobs they’ll end up with, he says it comes down to their attitude and aptitude.

“But they are deliberately choosing this course to get into a hotel or tourism management position.”

Study Queenstown boss Aaron Halstead, who’s just taken a delegation of local educators to China, says there was very strong interest there in QRC’s new graduate diploma.

“This is an excellent addition to the higher education product offering in Queenstown, and will ensure we continue to attract high-quality domestic and international students to the region.”