Tourism is a service industry rich in development potential, especially in the integration period with high demand for human resources and attractive income. However, current human resources in the tourism industry still cannot meet both quality and quantity, especially after the Covid-19 pandemic.
The university’s training scale is stable but human resources are still lacking
Talking with Vietnam Education Electronic Magazine, Associate Professor, Dr. Nguyen Thi Thuc – Vice Principal of Thanh Hoa University of Culture, Sports and Tourism said that the scale of training in Tourism of the school kept at a stable level even before or after the Covid-19 pandemic.
“The school’s tourism field has 3 majors that are maintained for annual training, with a scale of 50-70 students/major, equivalent to 150-210 students/year, not including short-term training.
Thanh Hoa University of Culture, Sports and Tourism is a local school, so young people have long wanted to study at key higher education institutions. But when the pandemic happened, many students chose Thanh Hoa to study. That’s why the school’s scale remains stable. After the pandemic, the scale tends to grow more,” Ms. Thuc informed.
Associate Professor, Dr. Nguyen Thi Thuc, Vice Principal of Thanh Hoa University of Culture, Sports and Tourism. (Photo: NVCC)
Currently, the school is also researching to expand the scale of training, including occupations in the field of tourism. Because the tourism field is one of the three important pillars of the school.
Ms. Thuc also added that the current tuition fee for the Tourism major is 3,425,000 VND/semester, equivalent to nearly 7 million VND/year.
Meanwhile, Dr. Nguyen Thi Hong Van, Deputy Head of the Department of Tourism, School of Foreign Languages and Tourism, Hanoi University of Industry, said that after the pandemic, the school’s tourism training scale tends to decrease but trivial.
Specifically, in 2018, the school trained 125 students majoring in Tourism. From 2019-2021, the number of students remains stable in the range of 122-125 students. In 2022, the number of students will decrease to 93 people. And in 2023, the number of students majoring in Tourism is 106 people.
According to Ms. Van, in the next few years, increasing the enrollment scale will not be the school’s priority. The school’s orientation for the Tourism industry as well as other industries is sustainable and application-oriented development. Therefore, the school focuses on improving comprehensive quality so that learners have the ability to “learn to know, learn to do, learn to perfect themselves, learn to live together” (according to UNESCO). Therefore, improving professional skills, problem-solving capacity, management thinking and English proficiency are the school’s priority issues.
The tuition fee for the Tourism major at the School of Foreign Languages and Tourism, Hanoi University of Industry is 415,000 VND/credit. In addition, according to the nature of the subject, there will be separate coefficients such as: Theory coefficient 1; practice factor 2; essays, major assignments, coefficient 1; project, project coefficient 1.4.
Although the scale of training at schools is relatively stable, human resources are still not enough to meet the needs of the tourism industry.
According to statistics from the Vietnam National Tourism Administration, there are currently about 350,000 people working in tourist accommodation establishments, meeting 70% of demand. With the existing number of facilities, if the capacity reaches over 70%, the tourism industry needs about 507,000 workers in accommodation facilities, of which about 50,000 are needed for administrative personnel. 
Need to improve the quality of human resources in the tourism industry
The Vietnam National Tourism Administration estimates that each year the tourism industry needs about 40,000 new workers and 25,000 workers need retraining. However, every year the schools only train 20,000 students. The proportion of professionally trained tourism workers is still low, accounting for only 43% of the total number of tourism workers. 
That requires further improving the quality of human resources, meeting the need to supply high-quality human resources to the market.
According to Dr. Nguyen Thi Hong Van, the tourism industry’s human resources after Covid-19 are facing an unprecedented crisis. A relatively large number of tourism businesses closed after the epidemic, leading to limited opportunities and time for students to practice and intern programs at businesses. Therefore, the connection between schools and businesses is still limited.
School students in tourism professional practice activities. (Photo: NTCC)
This is also the reason why it is necessary to improve both the quality and quantity of human resources in the tourism industry. According to Ms. Van, the following measures can be taken:
Research and forecast the demand for quantity and quality of human resources to develop appropriate plans for on-the-job training, new training, recruitment…
Training institutions and businesses need to cooperate in designing and building training programs and training processes according to modules so that training products always keep up and match the labor needs of the market. .
Improve the capacity of on-site trainers (enterprises) as well as lecturers and tourism teachers at training establishments.
Attract old tourism human resources to return with policy mechanisms that encourage workers (salaries and benefits).
Open tourism and travel professional training courses for students in related fields. Open training courses for human resources working in the tourism sector.
Review and establish a local tourism labor network according to business contacts, through a flexible communication system, to ensure appropriate human resource addition.
To improve the quality of training, the school also focuses on building practical programs for students. These include specific professional skills such as: Travel operations; Operate travel programs; Designing tour programs; Consulting and selling tourism products; Tourguide; Event organization…
Students will learn in specialized, modern design practice rooms such as: virtual practice room, event organization room, computer room with software to support teaching activities such as: Travel Master, Smile Bos , Smile FO…
Students of the School of Foreign Languages and Tourism, Hanoi University of Industry practice tour guide activities. (Photo: NTCC)
In addition, students can also practice professional skills independently and with the guidance of teachers outside the school at tourist sites, resorts, and tourism businesses according to practical modules.
Practice scientific research skills through a system of thematic modules such as: Outbound tourism, adventure tourism, entrepreneurship in the field of tourism and thesis.
At Thanh Hoa University of Culture, Sports and Tourism, Ms. Thuc said that the school’s Tourism training program has 50-60% practical content. At the same time, the school was also invested in by Thanh Hoa province to build a center for tourism practice and event organization. Every year, the school updates and supplements the program depending on actual conditions to see what the tourism industry needs.
In addition, the school also signed cooperation agreements with many businesses such as: Sun Group, Sao Mai Group, Vinpearl Land Nha Trang,… as well as hotels and restaurants inside and outside the province so that students have the opportunity to practice practical experience.
“A student travels during the entire training course, in addition to practicing skills at the practice center, they also get to go on field trips and practice 4 times/ whole course.
Many students in their second year have started to assist on tours. In the third year, outside of class time or summer break or holidays, you also take tours for companies and lead tours very well. In fact, there are children who have very high incomes and can help their families contribute to study expenses,” Ms. Thuc informed.
However, according to Ms. Thuc, like in any field, it is impossible to require 100% of formally trained human resources to work in the right field. In the field of tourism, there are two aspects, one is that people who are formally trained will work in positions that require high professional expertise, but some unskilled workers only need to go through training classes. can work.
“For example, in community tourism, we cannot require people to have a secondary school degree, college or university degree. It is also a direct labor force in tourism activities. The problem is that in order for people to understand what tourism is, they need to learn through training classes from agencies and units.
And whether formally trained or not, people working in the tourism sector still need training. But here there is a clear distinction in job positions between the well-trained and the untrained. For example, receptionists or hotel restaurant managers must undergo training to have enough professional expertise to work,” Ms. Thuc emphasized.
In addition, the school also has attractive policies to invite highly qualified teachers to work at the school. Specifically, for PhDs, in addition to enjoying all the benefits that lecturers currently enjoy, the school will reward an additional 100 million VND. For associate professors, the bonus is 200 million VND.
Student at Thanh Hoa University of Culture, Sports and Tourism. (Photo: school website)
Open job opportunities, attractive income
According to Dr. Nguyen Thi Hong Van, the Tourism industry has a rich and diverse career position. The salary compared to other industries is somewhat higher if calculated based on daily salary and the employee’s income after graduation. Specifically, the average tour guide salary is about 500,000 VND/day, or even higher. Tour operator salaries can range from 15 – 20 million VND/month.
Meanwhile, Vice Principal of Thanh Hoa University of Culture, Sports and Tourism affirmed: After the pandemic, the tourism industry’s job opportunities are very large because during the 3 years of the pandemic, the tourism industry’s chain was broken. supply human resources.
A large number of people trained in tourism had to move to another field during the pandemic. When they move to a new field for 3 years, their jobs will be stable so they will not return to the Tourism industry anymore.
“In terms of demand, tourism always needs human resources and after the pandemic, it is even more needed, especially people with professional qualifications and formal training. Therefore, there is almost no shortage of jobs for the school’s students. Many children even choose jobs.
During the summer vacation, the school also sends students to intern at large corporations so they can gain more skills. During such internships, businesses pay a starting salary for summer work of about 5-6 million VND/student including accommodation costs. Students who lead tours also have a basic salary and other income depending on the number of tours they lead. Some people earn 15-20 million VND/month, some earn more than 20 million VND/month,” Ms. Thuc shared.
However, according to Ms. Thuc, there is a difficulty: people’s psychology, especially in remote areas, people do not want their children to choose the tourism industry. Because they think that it is a service profession, a profession that must serve others.
Students of Thanh Hoa University of Culture, Sports and Tourism have a lot of practice and can help guide tours from the second year. (Photo: school website)
It is known that currently the country has 192 tourism training establishments. Of these, there are 62 universities, 10 colleges specializing in tourism training, 45 colleges with tourism majors and 75 intermediate schools and vocational training centers.