PUNCAK ALAM, 8th-10th APRIL 2022: The Faculty of Hotel and Tourism Management (FHTM) marks another notable contribution in a Knowledge Transfer Programme and industry engagement with reputable stakeholders. This time, the collaboration was with the Forestry Department, Negeri Sembilan for a 3 days course focusing on the Hospitality and Ecotourism Management (Pengurusan Hospitaliti dan Ekopelancongan).
The programme was held at Faculty of Hotel and Tourism Management, Puncak Alam Campus. A total of 30 participants from the Forestry Department, holding a ranges position from general assistant, park ranger and assistant director from various eco-parks and state parks in Negeri Sembilan were involved in four modules designed specifically for the participants. Trainers from the Faculty of Hotel and Tourism Management were led by Dr. Khairun Najiah Ahmad (Ecotourism Management), assisted by other faculty members; Associate Professor Dr. Mazlina Mahdzar (Marketing), Datin Dr. Arni Abdul Gani (Customer Service), Encik Mohd Noor Ismawi Ismail and Puan Suriati Osman, both focusing on Hospitality Management.
The Director of Forestry Department Negeri Sembilan, Hj Saleh Awaludin in his opening speech stated in line with the Forestry Negeri Sembilan Strategic Plan (2021-2025) which focuses on strengthening ecotourism activities in eco-parks and state parks, it is important for the Forestry Department to build a strong network with higher learning institution such as UiTM.
This is the best platform in exchanging ideas and further to discuss on best strategies to manage scarce resources in a more sustainable approach. He said, “The key strategy for us is not only to ensure that we will be able to continuously attract nature-based domestic tourists, but at the same time able to capture the international market – we are blessed with unique nature-based products and resources, but it is mostly unknown to the world”. He further added that “while effective and targeted marketing are needed for this purpose, at the same time it is also crucial for eco-parks and state parks to not abandoning the concept of sustainable management and continue to enhance local community involvement and empowerment in its governance and operations”. Through collaborations with stakeholders such as this Knowledge Transfer Program, the Faculty of Hotel and Tourism Management shall strive to engage with more sustainability initiatives in the future that will benefit the local community and thus promoting the agenda for Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).