Tourism School Partners with International Airline

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Auckland, November 23, 2017

A new partnership between New Zealand’s largest travel and tourism school and one of China’s fastest growing airlines is creating global opportunities for aspiring flight attendants.

Last week, Tianjin Airlines staff set up shop at the New Zealand School of Tourism (NZST) Auckland Airport campus, interviewing 42 of the provider’s students from various parts of the country for potential roles as international flight attendants. Those who make the final cut will be flown to Beijing for a three-month induction programme, before starting their new jobs as cabin crew on the airline’s long-haul flights.

First in Australasia

An HNA Group subsidiary, Tianjin Airlines launched in 2009, and expanded into the long-haul sector (including Auckland) last year. This is only the second time the airline has recruited outside of China, and the partnership marks its first-ever recruitment drive in Australasia. According to Head of International Recruitment for NZST, Tom Parker, the unique initiative will bring benefits for both Tianjin Airlines and NZST graduates.

Mr Parker said that Chinese airlines are keen to partner with NZST because we have strong number of graduates that are Work Ready, World Ready.

“Tianjin Airlines is undergoing aggressive expansion. They know that in order to become the next Emirates or other global airline, they need more multinational crew. That’s where we come in. They can interview New Zealand, Japanese, Korean, Chinese and Indian students all in one place. Better still, our students all speak fluent English and have completed the relevant qualifications. We are a one stop shop and take the hard work out of the recruitment process for them,” he said.

At the same time, the partnership offers some fantastic opportunities for NZST students who have their sights set on flying the skies.

“Many students would not have dreamed of working in China, so NZST is expanding their vision and creating opportunities that are exciting. At the same time, they are trying to make the process as simple as possible and so having the airline on site is a big step forward in that. Working in China and learning the language will give a huge career advantage, giving successful graduates the chance to start flying internationally straight away,” Mr Parker said.

High calibre candidates

Earlier this year, Hainan Airlines (who is one of the owners of Tianjin Airlines) – interviewed and recruited 10 international flight attendants from NZST by using a similar model of being on site. Impressed by the calibre of candidates, Tianjin Airlines decided to follow suit. Last week’s rigorous two-day interview process included both individual and group sessions. Fourteen students have been selected by Tianjin Airlines to move forward to the final stage of the interview process.

The Tianjin Airlines interview was the first-ever airline interview for Amit Kumar, who moved to New Zealand from Delhi, India, five years ago.

“I feel it went well, and it certainly helped that the tutors had given me some tips about what to do and what to say in an interview situation,” says Amit. “I’m really excited about this opportunity. It would be so much fun living and working in China, and learning about another culture. Tianjin Airlines is a rapidly growing company, so it is an excellent time to get in. But even if I don’t get selected, it’s been a really good learning process,” he said.

About New Zealand School of Tourism

NZST prepares students for global careers in hotels, airlines, travel agencies, tourism companies, cruise ships, conferencing and more. With eight vibrant campuses across New Zealand and a line-up of industry-relevant certificates and diplomas, NZST is a leader in the field.


Photo Caption:

  1. Amit Kumar
  2. Tom Parker with NZST Stakeholder Development Manager Bronwen Wilkinson

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