Cook Islands Tourism Unveils Leadership Programme to Foster Next-Gen Leaders

Posted on 06/11/2023

Cook Islands Tourism Unveils Leadership Programme to Foster Next-Generation Leaders

In an exciting collaboration, the Cook Islands Tourism Corporation (CIT), in partnership with Air New Zealand and Pacific Resort Hotel Group (PRHG), has introduced the Cook Islands Tourism Leadership Programme. This innovative initiative offers passionate individuals a unique opportunity to nurture their leadership skills, enhance their industry knowledge, and forge a promising career path within the Cook Islands’ tourism sector.

As the cornerstone and largest economic driver of the Cook Islands, the tourism industry is vital, and it’s crucial to establish clear career pathways for aspiring professionals. Karla Eggelton, CEO of Cook Islands Tourism, emphasized the significance of this program, stating, “The Cook Islands Tourism Leadership Programme will provide participants with the modern-day foundation tools and resources they need to develop their skills and knowledge, ultimately becoming successful leaders in the tourism industry.”

The program entails a 17-week Leadership and Performance course at Queenstown Resort College (QRC) Tai Tokerau campus. This comprehensive course covers a wide array of topics, including communication, motivational leadership, well-being and diversity, performance under pressure, and operational management.

Following the completion of the course, participants will return to Rarotonga and embark on a six-month hands-on, tailored management pathways program with the internationally acclaimed Pacific Resort Hotel Group. During this work placement, participants will gain valuable experience across various hotel departments, deepening their understanding of the diverse roles and responsibilities within the hospitality industry. It also provides an opportunity to apply their theoretical knowledge and skills in real-world scenarios while learning from seasoned professionals.

Marcus Niszow, CEO of Pacific Resort Hotel Group, expressed their commitment to this initiative, stating, “Tourism is essential to the Cook Islands economy, and we believe that investing in the development of our people is the best way to ensure the future success of the industry.”

Air New Zealand, a key partner, shares this commitment to the sustainable growth of tourism in the Cook Islands. Addrienne Hosking-Tinirau, Country Manager for the Cook Islands at Air New Zealand, underlines their dedication to nurturing the next generation of tourism leaders through this program.

This program showcases a successful collaboration between the government and the private sector, providing valuable opportunities for Cook Islanders. As Eggelton put it, “We are grateful to Air New Zealand and Pacific Resort Hotel Group for their partnership in this important initiative. While this is the first for us, there is scope for expansion and bringing on other businesses who see value in this work.”

The Cook Islands Tourism Leadership Programme welcomes applications from passionate Cook Islands residents aspiring to make their mark in the tourism and hospitality sector. The program is scheduled to commence in early 2024, and applications can be submitted by sending a CV, a cover letter, and a 2-minute video explaining why you are a suitable candidate to The deadline for applications is Monday, November 13, at 4 pm.

This initiative not only promises to shape the future of the Cook Islands’ tourism industry but also the lives and careers of its aspiring citizens, fostering a bright future for the sector.