Passion4Hospitality by Institute of Hospitality


Neil Shorthouse, FIH | Institute of Hospitality – Ambassador

What happens, when you have over 400 students, 40 hospitality business, mixed in with a handful of key and well know industry professionals all in one location?  Passion4Hospitality is the largest, FREE student and industry experts networking event created by the Institute of Hospitality. Students and graduates get the chance to participate in competitions and debates as well as network with top industry employers.

.  A full day of events kicked off by the Chief Executive | Peter Ducker in the main conference hall outlining the current ‘Scope of our Industry’, this was followed by a variety of topics ranging from ‘Brand ME’, ‘How to succeed in Hospitality’. ‘What to look for in an Employer’.  

The Student Debating Competition, first round was held behind closed doors, where by Universities had to debate ‘for’ or ‘against’ the motion of “This house believes that Artificial Intelligence and Robotics are a serious threat to the Hospitality Industry”.  5 teams debated in front of a panel of judges, who then had the task of selecting two finalists who then had to debate again, although reversed vs what they had voted for in the morning.  The overall winners were The Hong Kong Polytechnic University.  In between debates, we spoke with one of the judges Robert Richardson FIH, General Manager, The Grand Folkestone, we asked him about his thoughts on Passion4Hospitality.

Richardson says. “I was proud to accept a place on the judges’ panel for the annual student debate, which this year covered the subject of “Artificial Intelligence and Robotics in the hospitality industry”, and swept off my feet by the level of knowledge and talent demonstrated by the debating teams.”  Why should students attend the event?  For Richardson P4H is unarguably the UKs leading hospitality careers showcase giving the attending students, coming this year from as far away as Hong Kong, an intimate look at every facet our diverse and eclectic industry has to offer. 

So what makes it stand out from other events, Richardson said that what he likes about the event, now in its 9th year, and the reason I come back to it is that whilst it may well attract huge hospitality businesses and names, the feeling in the room is one of inclusivity, where everyone is welcome and equal. What better way to welcome our industries next generation than that?

The HOTS Business Game Competition, Teams of hospitality students found themselves

ready to take part in the HOTS (Hotel, Operations, Tactics and Strategy) Business Game Competition. 10 rival teams using the interactive hospitality simulation programme HOTS had to manage a virtual hotel business. Over a period of 6 hours, the teams where given new data and statics every 30 minutes, which represented an additional month.  The task would not have been complete, if throughout the day unexpected situations where added into the mix.

Throughout the day several companies also took this opportunity to exhibit at the Careers Fair, where they had the chance to showcase their graduate schemes, employment opportunities and management trainee programmes to hundreds of top students and graduates from leading hospitality schools like Glion, Edge Hotel School and University of Surrey. 

For more information on the work that the Institute of Hospitality does, along with information pertaining to membership, company membership schemes, or educational membership schemes, please email Neil at [email protected] an information session will be held in early April 2019, dates and location to follow.

The Institute of Hospitality is the professional body for managers and aspiring managers working and studying in the hospitality, leisure and tourism industry. They have members working in every sector of the industry and in over 100 countries around the world.

The primary purpose is to promote professionalism through lifelong learning. This is achieved through engagement with hospitality educators around the world, through our knowledge library resources and through a programme of professional development events.

They aim to support all our members at every stage of their career and help them reach their full potential. Every part of our broad industry is supported; Managers, students, educators and suppliers.

Established in 1938, we are managed as an educational charity and our resources include publications, management guides and research, covering both our industry and other management disciplines.