The idea to start our chapter began when Mr. Andrew Jones, PATA Chairman at the time, came in as a guest speaker in 2016 for TOUR 111 – Introduction to Tourism at Capilano University. He recommended that the students consider establishing a PATA Student Chapter here at Capilano University.

Several students, inspired by his presentation decided to do just that. We established our chapter in March 2017 and have never looked back.

PATA Canada Vancouver Capilano University Student Chapter Chair, Shaun McGrath, at the PATA Youth Symposium in Macao, SAR (Photo: PATA)

We are fortunate to be tourism students at Capilano University, as the immediate past Dean of the School of Global & International Studies and current Director – International, Dr. Chris Bottrill, is currently serving as Chairman of PATA. Ms. Stephanie Wells, Co-Chair School of Tourism Management, and Mr. Chris Carnovale, tourism instructor and CBT Vietnam ambassador, have also been instrumental in making this happen. Without their support and guidance, we would not have been able to establish the PATA Student Chapter. These instructors continue to serve as faculty advisors to our chapter, providing invaluable mentorship as we proceed towards our third year.

There are currently over 20 PATA student chapters throughout Asia, with two in the Pacific region. Our student chapter is the only one of its kind in Canada! As we are the first student chapter in Canada, we caught the attention of other Universities in Asia. We want to build great relationships with these Universities that reach across Asia from as far west as Dhaka, Bangladesh to as far east as Manila, Philippines. It is a very exciting time for all the student members and professors involved.

We are full of energy and ideas to keep building on the momentum. Our mission is to help tourism students from both sides of the Pacific to be more connected, expand their networks, develop professional skills and contribute to the development of an innovative, sustainable and responsible tourism industry.

We look forward to sharing our journey and successes with you in the 2019 school year!