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.
On April 22, 2023, finale of “WE ARE HOTELIERS 2023” the 1st season was successfully organized by the Faculty of Business Administration – Foreign Trade University.Read more
Students are thrilled to have the opportunity to participate in real hotel practice in Danang. This experience is a chance for them to apply their theoretical knowledge and gain valuable practical skills in a real-world setting.Read more
Located in the heart of Danang, a city renowned for its stunning beaches, rich cultural heritage, and rapid economic growth, Vatel Danang offers a truly unique educational experience.Read more
* Applied ONLY for the intakes of March 2023 & July 2023 at Vatel Ho Chi Minh - Hotel & Tourism Business SchoolRead more
At Vatel Ho Chi Minh - Hotel & Tourism Business SchoolRead more
The First school day of the Cat Year 2023 - Interculturality Marco Polo International Internship. Lecturer: Ms. Chloe - EM of TIA Wellness Resort, My Khe Beach, Danang, Vietnam.Read more
With the motto "Learning goes hand in hand", Vatel always creates conditions for students to participate in practical experiences and learn from experts from 5-star hotels in Hanoi, in order to improve professional skills and practical knowledge.
With the goal of training students to be either good at theoretical knowledge or proficient in skills, Vatel always creates conditions for students to participate in real-life experiences, apply their knowledge into a professional environment.Read more
Vatel Danang students improve their skillsRead more
VATEL - INTERNATIONAL PARTNER OF INTERNATIONAL HOTEL MANAGEMENT PROGRAM RATED AS THE BEST HOTEL SCHOOL IN FRANCE 2022
Vatel Hanoi’s students had the chance to celebrate their graduation at the French Embassy for the first timeRead more
More and more human communities consider ecotourism to be a solution that promotes their way of life, and preserves their culture and biodiversity surrounding them.Read more
Martin Rousset, a Vatel Nimes student, flew to Antananarivo for Vatel Madagascar’s specialization in ecotourism management for his last MBA year.Read more
The tourism sector, one that now attracts millions of young students throughout the world, is in tune with globalizationthat is currently being overturned by inequalities and environmental threats.Read more
Vatel Rwanda started in 2016, we began to prepare the first intake for 2018, headed by Nicole Bamukunde, a Rwandese graduate of Vatel, and who has worked in startups in her country, which is totally renewing itself.Read more
Ms. Nguyen Thuc Thuy Tien - Vatel student has won the Miss Grand International 2021 title, one of the top six major international beauty pageants for women.Read more
This last week of November, 339 5th year students competed in English for 1st place on the podium.Read more
Each year, students spend from 4 to 6 months doing internships at 5-star hotels in Vietnam and around the world. In the 2020-2021 academic year, the epidemic will not hinder the determination of the Foreign Trade University and Vatel studentsRead more
The results of the efforts, study and training of Vatel students are best demonstrated through comments from hotel managers and customers served by students.Read more
Vatel Hanoi's student have practical experience in "Wine Tasting" event at The Warehouse - No. 46 Ngo Quyen, HanoiRead more