Business pioneer Sol Kerzner celebrated milestones achieved by the University of Johannesburg's (UJ) School of Tourism and Hospitality (STH) on Thursday, 22 March 2018. The event was held in the Kerzner building of the STH at the Bunting Road Campus.
Prof Tshilidzi Marwala, the Vice-Chancellor of UJ, Mr Sol Kerzner, the STH Board and industry partners celebrated the STH journey and milestones achieved during former Vice-Chancellor Prof Ihron Rensburg's tenure and committed to strengthen the relationship under the new management of the University to grow the STH to greater heights as it engages with the realities of the 4th Industrial revolution.
Mr Kerzner (a well-known patron of the STH) and the Kerzner family have for the past thirteen years continued to support the STH.
Mr Kerzner acknowledged the strides the STH has made. ''I am delighted to be here this morning quite a few years after I first got involved. I was enthusiastic about being able to participate and make a meaningful contribution towards advancing this institution. I think that the STH will continue to flourish.''
''It has been exciting to see the growth and success and to see students in the industry come from this school. This will ensure that the hotel industry flourishes in South Africa and in Africa. I would like to congratulate the leadership for the outstanding work they have done, he added.''
The tourism and hospitality industry has benefited from the School's graduates with honed skills for the world of work. Annually, UJ's STH produces 170 graduates in the field of tourism and hospitality. Since 2011, the STH under the leadership of Dr Diane Abrahams has set itself a development trajectory that puts transformation, innovation and excellence at the forefront.
Director of the STH, Dr Diane Abrahams said, ''Today is about appreciation and acknowledgement of leaders who have guided the STH on its journey to date. It is also a commitment to take the school to the next level and to lead in developing Africa's talent in the field of tourism & hospitality."
The STH currently hosts 9 Post-Doctoral fellows and will have its first two PhD graduates in 2018 after introducing a PhD as part of its programme offerings in 2015. STH produces cutting-edge research in the field of tourism and hospitality and has extended its research affiliate network across the continent of Africa to accommodate the growing number of postgraduate students.
Prof Marwala paid tribute to Mr Kerzner: ''Thank you Mr Kerzner for your continued investment. Your contribution to not just the wellbeing of the current generation of South Africans but also future generations will reverberate throughout eternity.''