Q: Name? Age?
A. Venessa Garcia Fazio, 22 years old
Q. Program and year graduated?
A. Hotel and Restaurant Operations Management, graduated in 2017
Q. Which class did you find most beneficial?
A. Every class played a role in my overall learning experience, however, I think that the most beneficial courses were Service Excellence and Careers. We were able to complete several certificates in Service Excellence and were taught information that can be used in any workplace. Career courses are always an asset, however, this one was particularly helpful because of the one-on-one practice with interviews, and assistance with making a resume/cover letter (I still use the same layout to this day).
Q. What do you enjoy about your career?
A. Hospitality is one of the largest industries as people are taking part in it on a daily basis, which is why having strong background knowledge about how it works is such a powerful tool, not to mention the skills we gain from classes and work experience combined are transferable to any job we may have. Every work day is different from the last and I get to meet people from all over the world; I can confidently say my job is far from boring.
Q. What advice would you give future/current students taking this program?
A. Work hard and try not to get distracted. Some students may have different priorities or may not be set on the same goals as you are, but don't let that take you away from what you want to do/become. Keep a healthy balance between school and your social life, always remember that stressing over assignments, presentations and exams is temporary but will benefit you in the long run. Listen to your instructors because they have your best interest in mind and have amazing hospitality backgrounds and experience.
Q. What was the biggest obstacle you faced during your time as a student?
A. I feel like group assignments and presentations were my biggest obstacles. With different schedules, full-time jobs and living all around the city, getting together to complete assignments was almost impossible. It took a while for me to find the right group, but it really made an impact on my school life. Having people you can rely on when papers are due and equally contribute to the end product will make a difference on your grades and your overall work ethic.
Q. How did your experience at Humber help you find employment after graduation?
A. Actually, I'm still employed with the company where i did my fourth semester internship. Humber helped me acquire the intern position and i was offered a job on my last day of my placement. I am now working in a different department of the hotel, and have been in my current position since I graduated last year.
Q. In what ways did Humber prepare you for the work world?
A. We had amazing instructors that not only new the industry inside and out, but were also there if we needed any help or encouragement along the way. They really did think of it all, from how to dress and speak professionally to properly analyzing and solving hospitality cases. Humber was always keeping up to date and teaching us about the modern industry trends and didn't just focus on the "traditional" ways of hospitality.
Q. What opportunities would you urge other students to take advantage of?
A. Your instructors want you to take advantage of their knowledge, so do it! Also get involved with clubs, competitions or events taking place on campus. Involving yourself is a great way to test your skills and knowledge of the given topics and the industry as a whole.
Q. In your opinion, what are 5 crucial skills needed to perform your job?
A. Patience (a lot of it), organization, quick thinking, compassion and customer service
Q. Why hospitality?
A. This industry always sparked an interest in me. I wanted to become a chef when I was younger but realized (after many cooking courses and back-of-house training) that it was not something I could see myself doing forever. I became very intrigued with the business and operations side of hospitality and new that's what I wanted to be doing. Everything intrigued me; from staying in unique hotels and trying new restaurants to exploring new destinations around the world.
Q. Why did you choose Humber College?
A. I've heard nothing but positive feedback from Humber Alumni, and the location was ideal for me. I attended University downtown Toronto prior to Humber and there is no comparison. Humber really focuses on their students and the instructors go to great lengths to make sure everyone succeeds in their careers.