When people think of a “Success Story”, they always think of those who have worked for quite a while and climbed the corporate ladder quickly and brilliantly.
But when you listen to Jenna Li, the Dubai Ritz-Carlton Meetings & Special Events Executive, as she tells us her story, it’s really hard to imagine that she has just graduated from Vatel in Mauritius.
So here is our youngest 2013 Success Story told by a 2013 graduate!
Jenna, could you tell us why you decided to study at Vatel?
I was born and raised in Mauritius. I was lucky to be able to attend the best girl’s high schools on the island: Lorrette College in Port Louis and Queen Elizabeth College. All courses were given in English and my high school education followed principles of the Cambridge Higher School Certificate. As I had very good grades, I was able to be nationally ranked. And that opened many doors for me when choosing what I wanted to study.
I had always known that I wanted to work in the tourism and international hospitality industry. So I started to look at what was offered in that field throughout the world and I discovered Vatel. And when digging a little deeper, I saw that a Vatel School had just opened in Mauritius. That was a golden opportunity I couldn’t pass up! Hotels in Mauritius are renowned throughout the world as being some of the most luxurious ones that exist and having a school with a global reputation right on my doorstep made this an obvious choice for me.
In addition to that, I didn’t want to go to a school that only gave theoretical courses. So Vatel’s method of education with a mixture of practical courses and lectures was just what I was looking for. Having the possibility of putting into practice what was studied every two weeks is really an asset that puts Vatel in a class way above other schools specialized in hotel and tourism management.
So you would say that Vatel lived up to your expectations?
Exactly, and even exceeded them! In Vatel I discovered how strong team spirit and solidarity were. There weren’t many students in my class so we were all very close. We worked on a lot of projects together. I particular I remember all the pre and post production needed for our first Lipdub in our Schools and organizing the first Vatel seminar in Mauritius. Being a part of these two events allowed me to realize I wanted to work in Special Events Management.
Another thing that really struck me was that most of our professors came in just for us from foreign countries to give their courses. The expertise and wealth of content in their courses was fantastic. I remember each and every one of them and continue to thank them for what they taught me.
Where did you do your practical application work and internships?
At Four Points by Sheraton Cybercity, the Royal Palm Hotel, and at the St. Regis Resort in Mauritius. And for my first internship it was at the One&Only The Palm in Dubai. Not bad! Discovering a lifestyle that was completely different from mine in my first internship really helped me to gain maturity. Each experience and each professional person I met during the three years I spent at Vatel in Mauritius really impacted me in my professional life. I remember each event I worked on during my internships as well as the tasks I accomplished during my practical application weeks. Spending this time in hotels really changed me. It made me a better person.
And that’s how your final internship turned into your first job? Is that correct?
That’s it exactly! I finished my exams at the end of October 2012 and then a few days later I took the plane to Dubai and started my final internship in the Ritz-Carlton. Three months later, they hired me in the job I’m currently employed. I think that this is pretty good for a first job.
Can you tell us in detail what you do then?
My job consists of directly reporting to the Events Manager as well as the Sales & Marketing Manager. This job gives me a lot of responsibilities at the hotel. Staying within a given annual and monthly budget, I take care of all private events such as meetings, conventions, weddings (what I prefer!) that I organize from A to Z as the direct interface between the hotel and the customer. I’m also in charge of the entire sales process that consists of attracting the largest amount of visitors into our hotel so we can show off our many assets: having them visit the hotel, showing them the new rooms and restaurant, etc. My “sales intensity” must always be at its peak and I’m there during each event.
Would you like to add anything?
Vatel opened every single door for me. It’s true that all students must involve themselves completely and never hesitate to go the extra mile, be patient and passionate while attending school. But Vatel values and its curriculum really help people distinguish a Vatelien from all the others.
I would like to encourage as many young people as possible to choose to attend Vatel, and to get as much experience as possible. I’d like to thank all my classmates, the administrative staff in Vatel in Mauritius, the professional instructors as well as the professors and lecturers that I was lucky enough to meet while I attended Vatel.
And very special thanks to the entire Ritz-Carlton Dubai team who allowed me to begin my career.
The hospitality and tourism industries are particularly concerned by sustainable development. And what if Vatel alumni played a key part in this transition towards more environmentally friendly hotel management?Read more
Travel broadens the mind, as the old saying goes. It also leads to unconventional restaurants. Let’s meet two Vateliens who founded Le Kaya Restaurant in Tignes.Read more
Besides having a Bachelor or an MBA Vatel, what does being a Vatelien mean?Read more
Throughout their entire careers, Vatel alumni remain in touch with their schools. This is also true for Kevin Tessieux, who has never forgotten that he was also once a student, and who now shares this knowledge with students today.Read more
The “Vatel Switzerland’s Student Life” activities make their graceful return thanks to its new president: Logan Grand.Read more
Chahrazade Baroudi, a Vatelien since 2013, describes her job as Marketing and Communication Manager in IDAM, Alain Ducasse’s restaurant on the top floor of the Doha Museum of Islamic Art, in Qatar.Read more
Going on two years now, the Jospeh Favre Grand Prix is the meeting point for Swiss Gourmet. Once again, our students had the opportunity to participate.Read more
In a vine growing region like Valais, Vatel Switzerland had to, of course create its own wine. In part of the courses “Vintage wines”, students aren’t just learning theory but are taking action.Read more
Future hospitality professionals, welcome to Vatel’s 100% management simulation serious game! For an entire week and on three continents, MBA students met the challenge of managing a 4-star hotel and a resort in the Indian Ocean. The winners are...Read more
Who is Gaelle Garnier, the new manager of the network of 35,000 Vatel alumni throughout the world? Let’s meet a Vatelien who works with Vateliens!Read more
The 25th Eurhodip conference, which Vatel took part in, took place in Croatia. Targeting responsible tourism, this conference allowed participants to have more information on opening higher education courses in the field of sustainable development.Read more
Designed to address the needs of the global hospitality industry, the Marco Polo program strengthens the international profile Vatel students have and has just received the prestigious Best Innovation in an Educational Program Award.Read more
Announced a few months ago, Vatel was undergoing the steps to becoming accredited as an “Ecole Supérieure”. As of October 12th 2018, it has successfully achieved this accreditation!Read more
As part of its "tea, wine and culinary art" event, the Swiss Dojo Center opened its doors to students from Vatel Switzerland for a week of discovering the Valais region as well as various distinct flavors that tea, wine and gastronomy have to offer.Read more
In early September, the MBA students specializing in "Finance & Project Development" have made their return. We went to meet one of them and got some feedback.Read more
Graduated in 2011, Alexis Bouche began his career in England. Six years later, he returned to France and is now the Sales Manager of the 5-star hotel, Villa Maïa.Read more
Nearly 40 years old, and now 50 campuses in 32 different countries: Vatel Group opened its first school in Paris and is continuing to grow and duplicate its innovative educational concept in schools abroad.Read more
Trained at Vatel Nimes ten years ago, Chloe Wu has a brilliant career in China. She no longer works in the hospitality industry, but has not forgotten her passion of hospitality and service...Read more
Vatelalumni.com, free and connected to your LinkedIn profile, will soon be one of your favorite internet sites!
The Vatel International Research Center in Hotel and Tourism Managementhas just published the 10th edition of its Journal, which targets research and reflections on changes taking place in the hospitality and tourism industries.Read more
Curiosity, humility, team spirit... A Vatelien shares his commitment to values his school transmitted to him.
The same international spirit that students have Vatel and 4 students in nursing undertake a humanitarian project in Madagascar.Read more
A traveler - salesman - ambassador, Marco Polo introduced Asia, at that time nearly unknown, to Europe. This inspirational fate has given its name to Vatel’s international exchange program, where students can study at another Vatel campus for a year.Read more
The most senior representatives in the international hospitality industry give Vatel the Best School Hospitality Award. An entire profession thus acclaims them.Read more
Learning the skills needed to be a manager, quick employability, international careers... Vatel, the passport that gets you hired. See the video.Read more
September marks the return of our 2nd and 3rd year students from their internships. We talk to one of them to get the scoop on their experience!Read more
On Monday morning, 80 new students arrived at Vatel Switzerland. The intake week was the occasion for these fresh new Bachelors to discover the school, the area, and to well prepare themselves for the academic semester ahead.Read more
On September 1st, on Vatel Switzerland’s campus, 86 newly graduated Vatelians, received their diplomas by the famous Swiss Mountaineer, Mr. Jean Troillet.Read more
The 5th edition of the Graduation Ceremony takes off with a prestigious sponsorship and this year’s Event Ambassador, Mr. Leonard Gianadda.Read more
On the special occasion of the launch of Vatel Switzerland’s new MBA Program, Marc Forestier, the Program Director and graduate of HEC Paris, gave us an interview.Read more
Vatel Switzerland is launching it's new MBA specialization Finance.Read more
After two days of auditing, the Vatel School in Martigny received the Swiss Eduqua label, recognizing its certification as a continuing educational institution.Read more
Human Resources Director of one of the most beautiful Swiss Palaces, Florence Vialletel talks about her professional experiences, and Vatel students that she recruits for internships.Read more
Robin Beney and Matthias Le Large, two 3rd year students, came in first place in the annual creative challenge of the Ecole Hôtelière de Lausanne out of over 40 participating hospitality management schools.Read more
A professor of hospitality management, restaurant services and tourism management for over 28 years, Pat Golden-Romero teaches MBA Vatel courses at Vatel San Diego, USA.Read more
Followed by her studies at Vatel Switzerland, one of our students was selected to participate in a training program by one of the most renowned hotel groups within the industry, Intercontinental Hotel Group (IHG).Read more
On Friday the 15th of June, after a week of exams for Bachelor students, everyone gathered for the memorable and lively Gala night for Vatel Switzerland.Read more
Vatel Switzerland’s gastronomic fortnight takes us to the flavors of Singaporean cuisine.Read more
The file submitted this spring to the SEFRI (State Secretariat of Education, Research and Innovation) has been well received with a seal of approval for the "École Supérieure" accreditation.Read more
Vatel Switzerland student Naika, participates in one of Switzerland’s most famous mountaineering ski races organized every two years by the Swiss Armed forces.Read more
Last week our MBA graduating students had to put on their entrepreneurial thinking caps to present their year-end projects.Read more
In the French speaking part of Switzerland known as the Swiss Romande, each year in Lausanne, the « Forum of 100 characters of Switzerland” is organized with the aim of discussing the country’s future.Read more
Vatel Switzerland 3rd year students get acquainted and cozy at the newest Oenopark !Read more
We took the time to catch up with third year Bachelor student, Dimitri Guillton, and find out his enriching experience at the St.Regis Bora Bora Resort and Spa ***** as a Concierge.Read more
This week we had the chance to go to Marseille in France and visit Vatel Switzerland alumni, Romain Nicoli. He has become the Deputy Director of Marketing Strategies at Chef Gerald Passedat’s 3* Michelin group.Read more
The second year International Bachelor Class wrap up their Communications course through theatrical plays.Read more
The International Bachelor Class say their good byes after 3 years at Vatel Switzerland!Read more
Let’s shred some powder!Read more
The Fairmont Montreux Palace recruits at Vatel SwitzerlandRead more
Vatel Switzerland’s newest Event Ambassador reaches the summit!Read more
Florence Delhaise, class of 2015 has won the 2017 Bucherer Trophy for the best receptionist in SwitzerlandRead more
Three of our 3rd year students of the international class worked during their last practical week in order to gather students with their families around one royal family table, to enjoy a lovely dinner with a warm cozy atmosphere.Read more
Cynthia Abi Khalil and Antoine Swaelus, 2nd year students of the bachelor international class, worked during 5 weeks of their practical courses to organize the gastronomic fortnight Vatel international cuisine under the theme of Belgium.Read more
Laura Pasquier explains her latest internship opportunityRead more
Vatel Switzerland had the honor to welcome the members of the executive management of the prestigious luxury hotel chain for the placement of trainees and the recruitment of their future international executives for their 5* Hotel in Paris.Read more
MBA student, Aubane Rietsch, made her dreams come true by obtaining the position of Sales and Marketing Trainee.Read more
Une sélection d’étudiants de Vatel Martigny se sont distingués par leurs compétences à l’occasion du plus grand meeting aérien de Suisse organisé du 15 au 17 septembre 2017.Read more