Media Release: Stevenson College strengthens links with Azerbaijan

STUDENTS and staff from Mingachevir Tourism College in Azerbaijan have completed a ten-day visit to Stevenson College Edinburgh as part of the British Council Skills@Work project to promote links between East European and UK colleges.

Skills@Work is a multi-country project that promotes internationalism within the vocational education and training sector across South East Europe (SEE) and the United Kingdom.

At the heart of the project is the sharing of good practice and experience through a college partnership scheme to allow countries in SEE to develop industry-led occupational standards and curricula.

Stevenson is partnered with Mingachevir Tourism College, Azerbaijan’s only college specialising in tourism, on a two-year project to develop training materials for the tourism industry.

Associate principal (Business Administration and Languages) at Stevenson, Alison Chambers, said:

“We are delighted to welcome Principal Dr Ayyub Ayyubov and his students back to Stevenson College Edinburgh.

“This successful partnership with Mingachevir Tourism College in Azerbaijan is in its second year of the British Council Skills@Work Project to provide customer care training materials for the tourism industry and to have these translated into Azeri language.

“The partnership is an example of the truly international dimension of our college which is exemplified in the close working and personal relationships that have been formed between the teams in both colleges.

“We hope that this project will lead to further collaboration between Stevenson and Azerbaijan.”

In April 2009, students and staff from Stevenson’s Tourism Department visited Baku, Azerbaijan’s capital city, on the invitation of the Azerbaijan Ministry of Culture & Tourism.

HNC Tourism student, Christopher Trotter, made a joint presentation with a fellow student from Mingachevir College.

The theme of the conference was ‘Tourism as a Form of International Dialogue’ and the event was also attended by students from higher education colleges in Russia, Georgia and France.

It is hoped the visit will lead to a lasting legacy between the two colleges and the development of joint programmes will make a positive contribution to the tourism industry.

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