Limerick training centre wins prestigious award for second time

Limerick training centre wins prestigious award for second time

The Hospitality Education and Training Centre at Limerick Enterprise Development Park has been awarded a European Centre Of Excellence Award for the second time - PICTURE: Brian Arthur

THE Limerick and Clare Education and Training Board has received a prestigious award for the second time.

Its Hospitality Education and Training Centre at Limerick Enterprise Development Park has become the first centre in the Republic of Ireland to be awarded with a consecutive European Framework for Quality Management (EFQM) Centre of Excellence Award.

Operated by the ETB’s Further Education and Training Division, the centre at Roxboro is dedicated to providing the highest level of culinary and hospitality training. It has built strong relationships within the Irish hospitality industry since its inception and links its learners directly with employment opportunities.

“Achieving this award for a second time acknowledges the centre’s continuing commitment to the highest level of success, as it engages with its learners, staff, industry and education partners, as well as government agencies and the local authority, said centre manager Bernadette Enright.

The coveted EFQM award is granted to Europe’s best performing organisations, following an in-depth audit of an organisation’s business processes and procedures. The Hospitality Education and Training Centre underwent a rigorous assessment to benchmark its performance against EFQM principles. 

One of the factors highlighted in the assessment was the unique partnerships and collaborations that have been established by the centre with hospitality industry employers. It became the first recipient in the 26 counties of the EFQM Centre of Excellence Award in 2016.

“Our centre is unique in that it delivers skills training directed at finding future employment within the hospitality industry specifically. I would like to thank Paul Patton, our director of further education and training, for his unwavering support of the centre over the last number of years. I also wish to acknowledge the support and friendship of Michael Fitzgerald and his contribution to the centre. This is an incredible achievement made possible only through the tremendous professionalism and enthusiasm all our staff bring to the centre every day,” added Ms Enright.

The Hospitality Education and Training Centre provides a variety of hospitality-focused Further Education and Training at its campus; ranging from entry-level to advanced, with the duration of training varying from three months to two years. It has seen hundreds of graduates pass through its doors keen to pursue a career in a variety of in the hospitality industry including chef, front-of-house, management, bar operations, barista and much more.

Commenting on the award, George O’Callaghan, chief executive of Limerick and Clare Education and Training Board, said: “The Hospitality Education and Training Centre is a real example of what can be achieved through the effective partnership between further education and training and industry partners. The award is an acknowledgement of this partnership and the real beneficiaries are those learners who have successfully progressed to employment or further training. The award is an acknowledgement of the exceptional work that is being carried out at the centre and the standards that are there.”

Dr Tony Lenehan, executive director of European Framework for Quality Management Ireland, said: “The EFQM Award to the Hospitality Education and Training Centre in Limerick recognises the professionalism of the centre in fulfilling its remit but also provides a valuable benchmark for other hospitality training centres around the country as they prepare individuals for valuable employment opportunities in the hospitality sector in their respective regions. The benefits of accreditation are substantial as it provides an international symbol and benchmark of operational excellence for the centre.”

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