NWRC and Bishop’s Gate Hotel offering Hospitality Management apprenticeship in Derry

North West Regional College (NWRC) and Bishop’s Gate Hotel are inviting applicants to apply to an HLA (Higher Level Apprenticeship) in Hospitality and Tourism Management.

Bishop’s Gate in Derry is one of the award-winning hotels to participate in this year’s programme.

Ciaran O’Neill, Managing Director, Bishop’s Gate Hotel is offering three Hotel Trainee Manager positions and explains the importance of the partnership: “We have teamed up with North West Regional College (NWRC) in the city to attract new candidates to our Trainee Manager Development Programme. Candidates will be given the opportunity to study at NWRC one day per week and have a full-time position with us.

“We are keen to attract new candidates who are thinking of pursuing a career in the hotel and hospitality sector. At Bishop’s Gate, we are committed to bringing in top talent and building a strong team. Courses of this calibre allow candidates to progress into a number of career pathways within the sectors of Hospitality, Tourism, Travel and Events.”

Robyn McGarrigle (Reception Team); Helen McGonigal (HLA Skills Development Officer, NWRC); Paul Sharkey (Executive Head Chef); JP McCafferty (General Manager) and Katie Beeton (F&B Team)


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JP McCafferty, General Manager, Bishop’s Gate Hotel said: “The Trainee Manager Programme represents an enviable opportunity to establish a lasting career with an award-winning hotel property. The programme aims to identify highly motivated individuals and develop them into future leaders by combining operational support experience, fast-track leadership training and tailored development opportunities in partnership with NWRC.

“The development programme rewards drive and determination, which involves professional hands-on experience combined with on-the-job cross-training and development in functional areas. In return candidates will have the opportunity to achieve a Foundation Degree in Hospitality and Tourism Management.

“This will equip the trainees with the knowledge and experience required to become future managers within the hotel and hospitality sector”.

Helen McGonigal, HLA Skills Development Officer at NWRC explained that the college is in talks with businesses across the North West about opportunities to offer employment to students enrolled on the HLA in Hospitality and Tourism Management.


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Ciaran O’Neill, Managing Director, Bishop’s Gate Hotel and Helen McGonigal, HLA Skills Development Officer at NWRC

She said: “The NWRC is delighted to be working in partnership with Bishop’s Gate Hotel. HLA candidates can be newly recruited employees or used to upskill and progress existing staff.

“The courses are all funded by the Department for the Economy so students never have to worry about tuition fees, in fact, the HLA is a unique work-based programme that enables participants to earn while they learn, while gaining a recognised Level 5 qualification. And there is no cost to the employer for participation.”

This programme has been designed to prepare candidates for a career in the Hospitality and Tourism industry. Modules of study will include: Event Operations, Introduction to Hospitality & Tourism, Food & Beverage Operations, Incoming & Domestic Tourism; Global Tourism Destinations, Facility Operations, Finance, Employability, Work Based Learning, Management in Action, Human Resources Management, Marketing & Entrepreneurship and Global Tourism Management Issues, Food & Beverage Management.


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On full course completion, candidates have the opportunity to progress to the BSC Hons Degree in International Hospitality Management at Ulster University or a similar subject degree programme at another HE Institution or University within the UK or Ireland.

NWRC has led the way in developing the HLA framework based on strong links with academic partners and businesses.

Helen added: “Higher Level Apprenticeships enable businesses to attract and retain employees with potential, expanding workplace diversity and benefiting the local community and wider economy. With Higher Level Apprentices learning at work, they can develop the knowledge and occupational competencies demanded by specific job roles and meet the unique needs of your business.

“Higher Level Apprentices can keep your business up to date with the latest techniques and technology, increasing your productivity for the future. With a higher-level apprentice, you are training someone for the way your business works from the start.


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This experience will feature a close mentoring relationship and academic support provided by NWRC as they progress through the relevant higher-level qualification.

To apply for a Hotel Trainee Manager position at Bishop’s Gate, please send a cover letter explaining why you wish to be considered and an up-to-date CV to [email protected] Closing date for registration is 30 September 2022.