I graduated from Cardiff Metropolitan University (formerly UWIC) in Hotel Catering & Institutional Management and then worked in the Hospitality Industry for Bass, Marriott and Whitbread for a number of years, before moving into Sales & Training with a European company. I then decided to return to university and embark upon a PGCE, which I successfully gained from the University of Wales, Newport.
I began teaching at Cardiff Metropolitan as part of my PGCE teaching practice and then became a part-time lecturer before gaining a full-time position. I completed a MSc in Hospitality, Tourism & Events Management and my dissertation was entitled “Does the Hospitality Industry encourage Healthy Eating for children and what are the major influences on their food choices?”
I am a senior lecturer within Cardiff School of Management (CSM) and live within the Tourism, Hospitality & Events Management department. I am the Programme Director for the BA International Hospitality degree and for the Foundations Programmes which lead to all of the degree programmes in CSM and some in Cardiff School of Sport & Health Science and Cardiff School of Technologies so am used to working collaboratively across the university.
As well as managing these programmes I am module leader for a range of modules from undergraduate to M level including a core cross department module Managing People & Organisations.
I was awarded a Cardiff Metropolitan University Teaching Fellowship for research entitled "Investigating the Effectiveness & Efficiency of front-loading academic skills into the curriculum & linking them into PDP and personal tutoring systems". This focused on implementing a school wide Academic Induction week across the School of Management and is an area that I continue to explore. For me the significance of early, formative experiences at university are important in determining the success of the transition from secondary (or a non-traditional route) to higher education and therefore introducing students to the institution's values and also key skills at an early stage allows us to investigate what students want from their university experience.
In order to remain current in my teaching and provide students with experience I engage with industry and arrange high profile events both within and outside of the university which allows the students to engage in valuable work experience that enhances their CV's. These include the dinner for the World Leaders at the NATO conference in Cardiff Castle which included President Obama and David Cameron, corporate hospitality for the Champion's League Final and various fundraising dinners for National charities. I have managed many projects within CSM and also the wider university such as Applicant Days, Development Days, Women in Sport, Go Green Week, MetFest, Summer Garden Party, Partner's Conference etc. The common theme between all of these projects is that they are focused on improving experiences and engaging with a wide variety of stakeholders and have students at their core.
I also work closely with the university's Widening Access department and deliver courses for them, both out in the community and also at their annual summer school to give taster sessions on what is available to study at university and how these courses can be accessed.