Five Travel and Tourism students from Coleg Menai’s Bangor campus are on their way to France for a work experience placement in the travel and tourism industry. The experience is funded by the Erasmus+ programme, the European Union programme for education, training, youth and sport.

The students will spend two weeks working at a French Wine Chateaux or in Tourist Information Services in and around the pretty village of Paulliac near Bordeaux.

They will be travelling in style by train, plane and automobile before staying in a small hotel near the marina at Paulliac. This is thanks to the Erasmus+ programme, and also to the proactive staff in the Travel and Tourism department at Coleg Menai who successfully applied for this funding.

Two of the students will be offering their services at various Tourist Information Services around the area, and the other three will work at different Wine Chateaux, such as the fairytale Pichon Baron Wine Chateaux. As part of the package, they will complete an on-line 20-hours ‘Learn Direct’ French for Beginners course at Coleg Menai before they leave the UK so that they have enough working French to see them through a typical working day.

The students going on this placement are: Cadi Llywelyn from Llanffestiniog, Catrin Baker from Talwrn, Lowri Hughes from Portmadog, Erin Jones from Brynsiencyn and Alicia Goddard from Benllech.

Dedicated student Cadi from Llanffestiniog, who gets the bus into college at 6.45am every day, said: “My ambition is to work as cabin crew on an airline, so the more work experience I can put on my cv the better. I also work part time at the Gwesty’r Seren in Ffestiniog where I do housekeeping, serving food, bar work and front of house – so a bit of anything and everything really. It will be interesting and fun to see how this compares to working in France. I am so excited!”

Fellow student Alicia said: “Everybody wants to work abroad don’t they? Especially when they are studying Travel and Tourism. This placement is a good trial for working away from home. My plan after I finish college is to go for an apprenticeship with a specialist travel company who arranges holidays to South America, followed by a degree possibly. I am so looking forward to working in France – it will be good on my cv.”

Lecturer Sharon Jones, who teaches Travel and Tourism said: “As well as giving the students an advantage when it comes to applying for jobs, this trip is also about personal development. This will stand them in good stead not only in terms of work experience for their cv, but also personal development, teamwork and confidence skills, learning a foreign language and having fun in the process!

“Our past students have travelled the world after studying Travel and Tourism with us – recent students who spring to mind are currently working as cabin crew on Ryan Air for example. Another has gained a first class honours degree at Liverpool and is now teaching Travel and Tourism at Wimbledon. The sky really is the limit when it comes to future options, with plenty of career choices here in the UK and further afield!”

Coleg Menai offers a range of courses and qualifications including Travel and Tourism. If you need more information on any of our courses, please visit the courses section of their website at www.gllm.ac.uk/courses  or contact their course advice line on 01248 370125.