GMIT hosts EU forum aimed at establishing new network of hotel schools in Europe

Erasmus-funded project involves five European countries with GMIT representing Ireland


Press Office

Date Article Written: 

Friday, January 25, 2019

Tutors in the hotel, catering and tourism industry in five European countries including Ireland will take part in a three-day consultation forum in GMIT from 29 to 31 January to start the process of creating a new European network of Hotel and Catering Schools that will improve employability for students and staff in the sector.

Twenty-one delegates from schools and hotels in France, Spain, Bulgaria, and Macedonia are leading the new EU initiative along with GMIT’s International Hotel School, the only Irish third-level college in the partnership, presenting Ireland. The GMIT team is led by Dr Sarah Berthaud, lecturer in French, and her colleagues in the International Hotel School, lecturers Colin Gilligan, Mary Reid, Ulrich Hoeche and Dr Francesco Noci.

The EU initiative, led by the French team, is part of the KA202 Erasmus 'REVER' project which has been awarded €121,000 for 2018-2020. The partnerships were set up with the support of the HEA, FICAHT (the French Irish Forum for Culinary Arts, Hospitality and Tourism), and the French Embassy in Ireland.

Dr Sarah Berthaud says the aim of the project is to create a European network of Hotel and Catering Schools that will have lasting benefits for students and staff. “The teaching and learning teams of the five partners, including our own Hotel School, will work on developing a hotel and catering 'European passport' that explains the modules, training, skills and competencies of graduates of the courses to employers. This will enable graduates to work and train abroad seamlessly as employers will understand in detail what the ‘passport’ means. Oftentimes, different awards can mean different levels in different countries - our work on this collaborative project will ensure clarity and parity.”

The three-day forum will be hosted by the GMIT International Hotel School from Tuesday 29 January to Thursday 31 January in the Galway campus. The outputs and research findings will be shared at a sectoral public conference next year (2020) from 3 April to 5 April when GMIT organise the Franco-Irish Forum for Culinary Arts, Hospitality, and Tourism – FICAHT – in collaboration with the French Embassy in Ireland.
Dr Berthaud adds: “The teaching and learning teams on this Erasmus-funded project will also research how to improve students' diets while analysing each partner's cultural context and requirements ie food, traditions, financial constraints. The network will also provide student placements, teaching and learning observations, and teaching resource development”. 

“It is an incredible and exciting opportunity for us to work directly on the development of this new 'European passport' for students on our own courses and staff who deliver them. The project will provide opportunities for our students and staff to expand their knowledge on European food traditions and cooking techniques. This in turn will increase the students' employability across the European Union.”

Diarmuid Ó Conghaile, Head of Dept, Galway International Hotel School (GMIT), says: “This project will present wonderful opportunities for our future graduates, and for our academic team involved. It gives them an opportunity to share ideas and insights with our European partners in a coordinated way.”

For further information on this initiative, contact Dr Sarah Berthaud, lecturer in French, Galway International Hotel School, GMIT. Tel. + 353 91 742422 or email
For further information about GMIT’s International Hotel School, see:


Regina Daly
GMIT Communications Officer
GMIT, Dublin Road, Galway
Tel. 091 742826 / 087-9618355 (m)