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YWIT Awards: Rising Star of the Year: Advice from our Sponsor, HIT Scotland

Women in Tourism are thrilled to have four incredible industry sponsors on board for the Young Women in Tourism Awards, in this blog we hear from David Cochrane, CEO at HIT Scotland.

HIT Scotland is a unique charity for the hospitality industry in Scotland, encouraging the development of anyone working or studying in the sector. Led and supported by the same industry it serves, HIT Scotland offers people opportunities to broaden skills and grow personally through its inspirational scholarship programme.

HIT Scotland are also the sponsors of the Young Women in Tourism Awards Rising Star of the Year category. Here, David shares some great tips for inspiring young leaders, and tells us a little bit more about the scholarship opportunity the Rising Star winner will receive.

Hi David, tell us a little bit about your career to date:

I started off working at the Commonwealth Games in Edinburgh. From there, I had various roles in contract catering, training organisations, The Gleneagles Hotel, Springboard Scotland and then HIT Scotland. I was fortunate to work with some great people who inspired and helped me get to the next level through development and hard work.

What do you love most about working in the tourism sector?

It’s all about the people. We have some fantastic people throughout the industry at different stages in their career. Helping people to develop through the HIT Scholarship programme gives me the greatest satisfaction.

At Women in Tourism, we’re all about empowering young women with the skills they need to reach leadership positions. In your words, can you tell us why that’s important?

The industry is ever-changing, and customer demands are forever increasing. New entrants to the industry today will be carrying out roles and specialisms that didn’t even exist a few years ago. The technology of kitchen equipment, for example, plus the attitude towards food from customers has changed immensely.

What can you tell us about the opportunity the successful award winner will gain with HIT?

The HIT scholarship will be a bespoke opportunity to learn new skills and standards at the level that suits the award winner the most. We will work with the scholar to devise an inspirational experience that will make them feel empowered and ready to motor on in their career.

What advice would you give young women starting to consider a career, or starting out, in the tourism sector?

New entrants must look at the development an organisation will provide for them to keep them moving forward. Always look to work with an organisation that is on the way up and investing, and also do your homework so you know what area of the industry you would like to work in. Please don’t say, ‘I want to work anywhere in a hotel’ as some large ones have over 40 departments!!

Find out more about the Young Women in Tourism Awards here.

Entries close Friday 17 May 2019.

Good luck!