In 2010, I finished my matric year with quite a lot of uncertainty about how I was going to put myself through a tertiary education without any funds. My future took a turn when I went to an open day at the Swiss Hotel School where after enquiring, Mr. and Mrs. Martin offered me a bursary to study at the college for 3 years.
At the time, as a very introverted individual, the Swiss Hotel School pushed me out of my shell by exposing me to all the different practical experiences both on-site and off-site at 4-star and 5-star establishments. This was such a great way for me to build on my confidence and communication skills while discovering which department was my calling in the Hospitality industry. With all the guidance we received from all our lecturers and the internships we did, I realized how much I loved being in the Food and Beverage department.
My most memorable experience was when we had the opportunity to go on a 6-month internship where some of my peers and I went to the United States. This experienced helped me discover my passion for Events, working in a fast-paced environment. After graduation, I returned back to the States to travel for 2 and a half years, gaining even more experience in F&B while exploring at the same time.
Upon my return home in 2016, I worked at various 4-star and 5-star establishments as an events coordinator. With all the experience gained, I made a decision to open my own Events Company which has gained momentum since July 2018 that I run on a part-time basis while working for a 5-star hotel as their Banqueting Manager.
Looking back at the confused young woman in 2011, I could not have imagined that this is where I would be in my career and I could not be happier or more fulfilled with the career path I’ve embarked on. This was all thanks to the directors seeing the potential in me to give me the bursary and their nurturing lecturers who were there to guide us along the way until I found my calling. The Swiss Hotel School has been one of the best decisions I’ve made, and it has shaped into the professional I am today.
What an unforgettable experience!
~ Ashley Ncube.