General Industry

Minister Launches Training Initiatives To Help Boost Hospitality Sector Employment

By Dave Simpson
Minister Launches Training Initiatives To Help Boost Hospitality Sector Employment

Minister for Further and Higher Education, Research, Innovation and Science Simon Harris has launched two training initiatives that are being delivered by Kildare and Wicklow Education and Training Board (KWETB) to help meet employer demands in Ireland's hospitality, tourism and catering sectors.

The two training initiatives, which have been developed in partnership with The Talbot Collection and Bretzel Barkey, are funded through "Skills to Advance", which is a national initiative that provides upskilling opportunities for employees to progress in their careers, and "Skills to Compete", which is a traineeship that helps the unemployed and career changers gain the skills needed for the workplace.

The two training initiatives offer a work-based model and successful participants, who must be over the age of 18, will have the opportunity for employment within the participating organisations, with the Talbot Collection offering a two-year employment contract and the opportunity for further education and training through an apprenticeship.

Harris Statement

Harris stated, "I'm delighted to be lending my support to KWETB and these initiatives. They are an exciting opportunity for anyone looking to develop new skills and further their career.

"The hospitality, tourism, and catering industry is essential to the Irish economy, and unfortunately, it is also a sector that has been so heavily affected by the COVID-19 pandemic.


"With this in mind, I welcome these training programmes, which are the next phase in a drive to boost the hospitality, tourism, and catering workforce, and I look forward to hearing about the success of the future candidates on the programmes."

KWETB Training And Innovation Services Manager Statement

KWETB training and innovation services manager Eilleen Cullen stated, "KWETB is at the forefront educating and training workforces across all sectors, however hospitality and tourism are very close to our hearts. Earlier this year we launched a very successful programme upskilling existing hospitality talent and now this new initiative creates opportunities for those new to industry, offering on-the-job learning and the opportunity for employment upon completion.

"It's been a very difficult year for the industry and we are thrilled to be able to launch these two initiatives today, with the support of Minister Harris, and in partnership with The Talbot Collection and Bretzel Bakery, which aim to grow a workforce heavily depleted during the pandemic. Anyone interested in applying for this fantastic opportunity can contact us at [email protected] for more info. You never know what the future may hold."

The Talbot Collection's "Chef Development Programme"

The Talbot Collection's "Chef Development Programme", delivered by KWETB, will provide 20 successful applicants with a 12-week training course in the training facilities at Marine House, The Murrough, Wicklow Town and Bray Institute of Further Education.

Candidates will be accommodated in the Talbot Hotel, Stillorgan, for the duration of the programme and will receive a City and Guilds Level 2 Diploma in Culinary Skills, and will also be offered a two-year contract of employment with the Talbot Collection upon completion at one of their six locations across Ireland.


The Talbot Collection's group managing director, Philip F. Gavin, stated, "We are absolutely delighted to have the opportunity to partner with the KWETB and have Minister Harris launch our Talbot Collection 'Chef Developement Programme'. This represents a significant investment for the collection.

"It is widely accepted that there is a shortage of professional chefs nationwide. Never has it been more important to invest in our future, for the future. We are very excited to offer this unique and fantastic opportunity to cooking enthusiasts in our communities who wish to pursue a prosperous career as a professional chef."

Bretzel Bakery's "Artisan Bakery Traineeship"

Bretzel Bakery's "Artisan Bakery Traineeship" will offer 12-16 successful applicants the chance to learn on the job and capture the basics of professional artisan baking through a 24-week training course. The traineeship will take place in Kilcullen, Co. Kildare, and will involve applicants developing work-based skills in Bretzel's bakery school.

Bretzel Bakery production manager Mateusz Piwowarczyk stated, "I took a job as a baker but it was the influence of a great teacher that made me want to be a gold medal winning baker. Bretzel Bakery and KWETB could be the teacher that makes the difference for you."


Open To Applicants From All Over Ireland

Both programmes are open to applicants from all over Ireland.

More information on KWETB and the two training initiatives can be found at [email protected].

More information on the Talbot Collection "Chef Development Programme" can be found at

More information on the Bretzel Bakery "Artisan Bakery Traineeship" can be found at

© 2021 Hospitality Ireland – your source for the latest industry news. Article by Dave Simpson. Click subscribe to sign up for the Hospitality Ireland print edition.