Press Releases

WORLD TOURISM DAY Tourism and Rural Development

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September 28, 2020 – An international panel of industry leaders discussed the theme of Tourism and Rural Development as part of World Tourism Day which highlights the important role tourism plays in preserving and  promoting culture and heritage around the world. The webinar, hosted by Capilano University’s School of Tourism Management and its student associations, PATA Canada Vancouver Student Chapter and the Tourism and Outdoor Recreation Student Association (TRECSA) attracted nearly 200 attendees during the session which was moderated by Jordan Sam, 4th year Bachelor of Tourism Management student.

This year’s theme “celebrated the sector’s unique ability to drive economic development and
provide opportunities outside of big cities, including in those communities that would otherwise be left behind” (UNWTO.org). With the industry on pause due to COVID-19 now is the time to reflect, rethink, and restart tourism in ways that preserve the beauty and cultures of our planet.

Rick Antonson, author and former CEO of Tourism Vancouver delivered a keynote opening to set the stage. He gave tourism students a glimmer of hope for the future: “You (tourism students) are entering (the tourism industry) at an amazing time with terrific unparalleled opportunities… Your fresh approach to solutions will be more important to a company today and in the coming years then they would’ve been back in January.”

Other panelists included Candace Campo (Owner and Operator of Talaysay Tours), Claire Bennett (Author, International Educational Tour Guide and advocate for Responsible Volunteering), Ellen Walker-Matthews (Vice President of Thompson Okanagan Tourism Association), and Malia Asfour (Director of the Jordan Tourism Board in North America).

The panelists were able to share insights on the theme from their own experiences and how rural tourism development can be a positive economic driver. In particular, Ellen Walker-Matthews discussed the regional strategic plan for the Thompson Okanagan Tourism Association, and has reminded us that “Tourism is a privilege and not a right,” and that we need to “figure out how to build back (rural areas) in a way that is accepting to them and that builds from those communities,” and local Indigenous Tour Operator Candace Campo feels that “Indigenous Tourism has a big role to play in our wellbeing as an industry, and that effective communication of Indigenous communities is also really important.” She discussed the importance of “networking with local leadership and municipalities as a small tourism operator.” Candace values those conversations.

Attendees were also able to learn from the international panelists on how rural tourism impacts the countries that they represent. Malia, from the Jordan Tourism Board discussed how “We need to look at and listen to local communities and engage them and make sure that government and the private sector are working together to identify the rules of community.” She also mentioned that “We need to make sure there’s no compromising on health care for them (the rural communities) and that we’re not bring in anything to them as tourists.” Claire, who is based in Nepal focuses her time on developing sustainable agritourism. She believes that “Getting tourists involved in agriculture can be one of the greatest values of tourism and that there is “an immersive educational side of tourism where travellers can bring home their experiences and new values.”

Bryana Spur, a student attendee stated that “Initially, I was nervous about entering the tourism industry during such unprecedented times. However, the discussions I have heard today make me excited about the impact we as young tourism students will have on shaping the future of tourism both rurally and globally.”

Not to worry if you missed the session, you can watch it anytime at shorturl.at/fBSZ7

                                                                             -30-

The School of Tourism Management Capilano University has been a leader in tourism education for more than 40 years and supports the PATA Canada Vancouver Student Chapter and Tourism and Outdoor Recreation Student Association (TRECSA) student groups in engaging with a broad range of initiatives that build student networks, leadership, community, and global citizenship.

School of Tourism Management: http://www.capilanou.ca/tourism

To learn more about TRECSA and PATA, visit our social media pages:
@capu.trecsa and @pata.capu.studentchapter

Contact Information:
Capilano University School of Tourism Management
Student Associations (TRECSA and PATA)
Director of Internal Communications: Bethany Lum bethnaylum@my.capilanou.ca


PATA Capilano University Student Chapter Released New Podcast Episode about Elephant Tourism

Vancouver, April 1, 2020 Amid the challenging times presented by the coronavirus pandemic, What In The World in Travel, the podcast created by the PATA Student Chapter at Capilano University, continues to deliver inspiring conversations about responsible travel and tourism in a commitment to enlighten students and tourism professionals around the world. In this month’s episode, host Carma Chan remotely interviews Dr. Ingrid Suter, Policy Advisor and Communications at Asian Captive Elephant Standards (ACES). The episode is a follow up on elephant tourism, a topic that has received significant media attention in recent years and was first explored by What In the World in Travel in November 2018 with guest Nicolas Dubrocard, who since founded the ACES organization.

FB_IMG_1585568951305Dr. Ingrid Suter tackles important topics related to elephant tourism, such as the welfare of domestic elephant, guiding principles around tourism and conservation, and how discussions about elephant-based attractions shifted over time. Suter started getting involved with elephant tourism in 2008, when she had the opportunity to work closely with captive elephant management in Laos. She then pursued a PhD in Asian elephant conservation and nowadays applies all her knowledge to ACES, whose mission is to bring positive benefits to the captive elephant population without compromising animal welfare or visitor health and safety. They provide elephant camps with the methodology, guidance and on-site support needed to achieve the highest level of welfare possible for elephants under human care.

Dr. Ingrid Suter is the final guest of this season of the podcast, which will be back with more exciting and thought-provoking talks in the fall academic term. Launched in September 2018, PATA Canada Vancouver Capilano University Student Chapter’s podcast features 30-minute interviews with travel professionals from around the world. The podcast audio engineer and sound editors is student chapter member Cee Trinh. The music clip in each episode is graciously provided by Francis Henson, a Vancouver-based singer-songwriter, guitar player, and producer. What In The World in Travel is made possible through the ongoing support of Capilano University School of Tourism Management and the technical support of fellow classmates at the campus’ Capilano Radio Club. The podcast is available on Spotify, iTunes, Google Play Music, SoundCloud, and the Student Chapter’s website.

Learn more about the PATA Capilano University Student Chapter on Instagram, Facebook, or at patacapu.com.

For more information, please contact Web and Digital Communications Managers Julia Moioli at juliamoioli@my.capilanou.ca and Madison Fairley at madisonmakara@my.capilanou.ca.


PATA Capilano University Student Chapter Starts 2020 Off With a Bang!

Vancouver, February 11, 2019 – It’s a new year and that means a brand new season of What In The World in Travel; a podcast created by the PATA Student Chapter at Capilano University in Vancouver, Canada. This unique communication platform has been an ambassador for important conversations about sustainable travel around the world, and has opened the student’s global exposure to industry leaders. The excitement continued this month with two new podcast episode releases which featured Robin Weber Pollack, the President of Journeys International, and Andrew Jones, the Founder of Sanctuary Resorts.

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Journeys International is a curator of adventures operating all over Africa, Asia, Latin America, the Middle East and more. Their focus is not simply on planning a great trip, it is to help you get closer to your transformational goals. In the podcast episode Robin emphasises their desire “to provide authentic, cultural experiences for their customers.” Whether it’s an excursion to The Great Wall of China, or to the dramatic yet incredibly remote environments of Namibia, Journeys International take pride in understanding the journey people are on and want to help them on their way.

Sanctuary Resorts is a company that offers responsible and sustainable tourism experiences where people can balance their body, mind and spirit in an environmentally friendly space. Award winning resorts created and managed by Sanctuary Resorts include The Bale in Bali, The Racha in Thailand, and Shinta Mani in Cambodia. Founder Andrew Jones shares in the podcast interview that the concept he developed for the business was based on a mix of his own passions and interests expressed in a desire to help people find balance in their lives. Sanctuary also reaches out to local communities and partners with specialists to support the development of those communities. Based on specific needs, they promote new opportunities for locals and help alleviate social issues.

Robin Weber Pollack’s podcast episode is hosted by Stefanie Carlson, the student chapter’s Chairperson, and co-hosted by Podcast and Marketing Assistant Alanna Rose.  Andrew Jones’ episode is anchored by Shaun McGrath, Vice-Chair. The audio engineers and sound editors are Brian Chao and Cee Trinh; both from PATA Capilano University Student Chapter. The music clip in each episode is graciously provided by Francis Henson, a Vancouver-based singer-songwriter, guitar player, and producer.

Launched in September 2018, PATA Canada Vancouver Capilano University Student Chapter’s podcast features 30-minute interviews with travel professionals from around the world. The podcast is made possible through the ongoing support of Capilano University School of Tourism Management and the technical support of fellow classmates at the campus’ Capilano Radio Club. The podcast is available on Spotify, iTunes, Google Play Music, SoundCloud, and the Student Chapter’s website.

Learn more about the PATA Capilano University Student Chapter on Instagram, Facebook, or at patacapu.com.

For more information, please contact Web and Digital Communications Managers Julia Moioli at juliamoioli@my.capilanou.ca and Madison Fairley at madisonmakara@my.capilanou.ca.


PATA Canada Vancouver Capilano University Student Chapter joins Invasive Species Pull promoted by EarthWorks on campus

November 16, 2019 – PATA Canada Vancouver Capilano University Student Chapter recently joined a local session of invasive plant pulling. Students, staff and faculty gathered to remove harmful plant species, such as English Ivy, Periwinkle, Himalayan Blackberry and American Holly from the surrounding forests at Capilano University.

Invasive SpeciesThroughout the month of November, EarthWorks has promoted three sessions of invasive species pulls around campus. The next phase of this process is to replace the harmful species with all sorts of plants native to the Coastal Western Hemlock forests and wetlands of North Vancouver. EarthWorks is an ambitious initiative focused on environmental stewardship. It is spearheaded by the students, staff, and faculty from Capilano University programs, such as Biology, English, Geography, Liberal Studies, and Tourism and Outdoor Recreation.

PATA Canada Vancouver Capilano University Student Chapter is empowered to promote responsible tourism and fully supports sustainability practices like the Invasive Species Pull. The invasion of alien species generates severe damages to ecosystems and is one of the main causes of global biodiversity loss. Its impacts are also intensified by climate change, habitat destruction and pollution. “With so many environmental challenges around the world, our PATA student chapter wants to give back whenever we can. Being able to help out on our own campus enables us to give back to our local community,” says Stefanie Carlson, Chair of PATA Canada Vancouver Capilano University Student Chapter.

Learn more about the PATA Capilano University Student Chapter on Instagram, Facebook, or at patacapu.com.

For more information, please contact Web and Digital Communications Managers Julia Moioli at juliamoioli@my.capilanou.ca and Madison Fairley madisonmakara@my.capilanou.ca.


PATA Canada Vancouver Capilano University Student Chapter released new podcast episode with guest Sarah Rhodes

Vancouver, October 30, 2019 – PATA Canada Vancouver Capilano University Student Chapter has released the ninth episode of its podcast What in the World in Travel. Hosts Carma Chan and Shaun McGrath had the opportunity to talk to Sarah Rhodes, Founder of Plastic Free Southeast Asia, a social impact organization that focuses on stopping plastic pollution at the source.

Plastic Free Southeast Asia was founded by Sarah in 2015 in Siem Reap, Cambodia, and offers consultancy and workshops to help tourism organizations become more environmentally sustainable. Some of the topics discussed in this episode include consumer trends in plastic waste and challenges in sustainable tourism practices. Sarah also mentions Plastic Free July, which is a one-month challenge that promotes better habits around use of plastics.

Launched in September 2018, PATA Canada Vancouver Capilano University Student Chapter’s podcast features 30-minute interviews with travel professionals from around the world. Earlier this year the student chapter interviewed Bruce Poon Tip, the Founder of G Adventures and Planeterra, and best-selling author of Looptail. Other past guests include Dr. Chris Bottrill, Chairman of PATA and Chris Regel, Business Development Manager of Winnow Solutions. Upcoming episodes will feature guests such as Martin Heng, Accessible Travel Manager and Editorial Advisor at Lonely Planet, and Dr. Ingrid Suter, Communications and Policy Advisor at Asian Captive Elephant Standards. Episodes are released every month of the school year, totalling eight per calendar year.

What in The World in Travel is made possible through the ongoing support of Capilano University School of Tourism Management and the technical support of fellow classmates at the campus’ Capilano Radio Club. The podcast is available on Spotify, iTunes, Google Play Music, and the Student Chapter’s website.

Learn more about the PATA Capilano University Student Chapter on Instagram, Facebook, or at patacapu.com.

For more information, please contact Web and Digital Communications Managers Julia Moioli at juliamoioli@my.capilanou.ca and Madison Fairley at madisonmakara@my.capilanou.ca.


VANCOUVER, September 29, 2019 – PATA Canada Vancouver Capilano University Student Chapter celebrated World Tourism Day on September 26 by co-hosting a panel of tourism professionals on campus. 

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The event kicked off with an inspiring video from this year’s host country, India, followed by an informative introduction from Stephanie Wells, Chair of the School of Tourism and Outdoor Recreation Management. Just a week prior, PATA Capilano University Student Chapter Chairperson, Stefanie Carlson, received the PATA Student Chapter Award of Excellence 2019 in Nur-Sultan, Kazakhstan on behalf of the Student Chapter. This award was shared with the rest of the student body before the World Tourism Day panel event began.

The panel of guest speakers consisted of Sandeep Talwar, President and CEO of TravDek; Dana Lee, Executive Director of the British Columbia Hospitality Foundation; Dennis Green, Director of go2HR; and Trina Notman, VP of Sales and Marketing of Accent Inns and Hotel Zed. This year’s event was the biggest ever hosted at the school, with more than 220 students in attendance from Capilano University, Vancouver Premier College of Hotel Management, Eton College Canada.

Based on the theme of “Tourism and Jobs: A Better Future For All”, Student Chapter member and moderator, Madi Fairley, asked the panelists a variety of questions related to their professional journeys. They shared personal experiences in developing their careers, gave profound advice for students entering the tourism workforce, and discussed best practice strategies and initiatives pursued by their companies. Afterwards, students in the audience were able to ask direct questions to the panelists through Sli.do and a Catchbox microphone.

The panel event successfully honoured World Tourism Day and helped to enrich the knowledge of Capilano University students, as well as that of external guests. Students who did not need to leave for class immediately after the event had the chance to network with the guest speakers and engage in important discussions about the tourism industry. A number of tourism instructors delegated course assignments directly related to the event.

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This event was hosted in collaboration with Capilano University School of Tourism Management and the Tourism and Outdoor Recreation Student Association.

Learn more about the PATA Capilano University Student Chapter on Instagram, Facebook, or at http://www.patacapu.com.

For more information, please contact Web and Digital Communications Managers Julia Moioli at juliamoioli@my.capilanou.ca and Madison Fairley at madisonmakara@my.capilanou.ca.


What in the World in Travel – A PATA CapU Podcast

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VANCOUVER, January 25, 2019 — PATA Canada Vancouver Capilano University Student Chapter begins the year with a new name and logo for its podcast about innovative topics in the tourism industry. What in the World in Travel is available for free streaming and download on the Student Chapter’s website, iTunes, and Google Play Music. The first episode to be released under this name will be on January 27, 2019, featuring JC Wong, Young Tourism Professionals Ambassador for PATA.

This brand refresh comes as a result of insights gained from attending masterclasses at the Vancouver Podcast Festival in November 2018 and feedback from the community. The new name will better target tourism professionals and travel enthusiasts from outside of a university setting, as the podcast contents appeal to a wide audience. In addition, episodes will be released according to a predetermined schedule on the 28th of each month that school is in session. The fun, informational interview style of programming will remain the same.

Since launching in September 2018, the Student Chapter’s podcast has released four episodes that feature 30-minute interviews with travel professionals from around the world. This includes Bjorn Harvold, Co-Founder of Travelkoin for blockchain technology in tourism; Sally Fung, Art Director and Digital Nomad through Remote Year; Nicolas Dubrocard, Advocate for Elephant Standards in Tourism; and Paul Rogers, Visionary for Gross National Happiness as CEO of Planet Happiness.

PATA Canada Vancouver Capilano University Student Chapter was established in March 2017 and is honoured to receive the PATA Student Chapter Award of Excellence 2018 for its achievements in its first year. What in the World in Travel podcast is made possible through the ongoing support of Capilano University School of Tourism Management and the technical support of fellow classmates at the campus’ Capilano Radio Club. The new podcast logo was developed with help from Capilano University student Harrison Shaw.

For more information, please contact Chairman Shaun McGrath at shaunmcgrath@my.capilanou.ca

Podcast and website link: www.PATAcapu.com


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Student-led podcast contributes knowledge to world tourism day

VANCOUVER, September 24, 2018 – PATA Canada Vancouver Capilano University Student Chapter is celebrating World Tourism Day on 27 September by launching PATA Cap U Podcast, a free audio show that discusses innovative topics in the tourism industry.

Each episode will feature an interview with a tourism professional to learn more about different sectors of travel, including new developments and how the industry can be expected to change in the next few years. In the inaugural episode of PATA Cap U Podcast, student hosts, Shaun McGrath, Jennifer Vaughan, and Carma Chan, speak with Bjorn Harvold, Co-Founder of Travelkoin and Traveliko, and discuss how he plans to revolutionize the travel industry with disruptive technologies, such as blockchain.

Podcast episodes of approximately 30 minutes will be released onto the student chapter’s new website, www.patacapu.com, on a regular schedule. Local and international tourism professionals are invited to participate in this ongoing project by sharing their wisdoms and insights on future podcast episodes.

PATA Cananda Vancouver Capilano University Student Chapter was established in March 2017 and is honoured to receive the PATA Student Chapter Award of Excellence 2018 for achievements from its first year. This initiative is made possible through the technical support of fellow classmates at the campus’ Capilano Radio Club.

For more information, please contact Chairman Shaun McGrath at shaunmcgrath@my.capilanou.ca.

Website Link: www.patacapu.com


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First year of PATA Canada Vancouver Capilano University Student Chapter finishes with tremendous success!

VANCOUVER, July 16, 2018 – First year of PATA Canada Vancouver Capilano University Student Chapter finishes with tremendous success!

Members organized several events throughout the year, including a sustainability themed World Tourism Day with guest speaker Gwendal Castellan, Sustainable Destination Development Specialist for Tourism Vancouver. Later this year, international youth volunteers from around the world arrived in Vancouver, through Lattitude Global Volunteering. They were welcomed and guided around Vancouver by the PATA Student Chapter. Through partnerships with Shoreline Cleanup Program of Vancouver Aquarium and Keep Vancouver Spectacular, over half a dozen bags of garbage was removed from the grass and beach shorelines of Crab Park.

The highlight of the year was inviting local high school students, studying tourism, from across Metro Vancouver to the Capilano University campus. They participated in the first PATA Student Chapter High School Case Competition, which focused on creative ways to mitigate overtourism through visitor dispersal. Prizes were sponsored by Westcoast Sightseeing, Landsea Tours, Harbour Air, and Capilano Suspension Bridge. Judges from local tourism organizations, including TIABC, go2HR, Connect 7 Group, and Capilano University Tourism Management department provided experience-based mentorship to the competition’s young participants.

PATA Canada Vancouver Capilano University Student Chapter will strive to maintain a high standard throughout its second year by continuously learning, collaborating, and innovating.

For more information about the PATA Student Chapter’s activities, please contact Chairman Shaun McGrath at shaunmcgrath@my.capilanou.ca.