The Secretary General of the World Tourism Organization (UNWTO), Taleb Rifai, and the president of UCAM, José Luis Mendoza, signed yesterday afternoon on the Campus of Los Jerónimos a memorandum of cooperation between the two institutions. Taleb Rifai thanked the interest of the Catholic University of Murcia, Affiliate Member of the UNWTO, in contributing to the improvement of tourism as a key sector in the world: “The UNWTO works to improve the life of people; through tourism, people are happier and meet new opportunities. Everyday, millions of people travel thousands of kilometres to visit new places. This is why it is important to improve the infrastructures and conditions of tourism. That’s the key role of the University”.
Rifai also stressed the importance of “seeing tourism as a development agent to improve our lives. We are in a perfect place for this because this university has ethical principles coinciding with those of tourism”.
As far as José Luis Mendoza is concerned, he highlighted the importance of studies related to tourism at UCAM: “Tourism is a fundamental strategic sector in our country and particularly in our Region. It has a bright future, but needs to be updated. It is an economic driver, generator of wealth. Therefore, from UCAM, we encourage this sector by offering a better preparation to the students in tourism in areas such as marketing or communication. A tourism professional should master all those fields and, above all, business organization and management”.
The Secretary of State for Tourism, Isabel Borrego, also attended the event , together with the vice dean of the Bachelor’s in Tourism, Ginesa Martínez del Vas, professors and students of this degree. Borrego commented that “today, we took a step forward into the very important collaboration the UNTWO is carrying with all the private organizations of Spain. I want to thank UCAM for the effort it demonstrates to improve the quality of the studies in tourism. We are a tourist power, but we have to keep on improving”.
Through the agreement signed between both institutions, a collaboration is established in order to achieve common objectives and implement projects in the areas of research, knowledge exchange and success cases in the field of tourism; support to the university formation in the tourism sector; participation to research on sport and gastronomy tourism; and collaboration in projects of innovation and tourism.
Tourism formation at UCAM
Studies related to the tourism sector are of particular importance at the Catholic University and that is why it offers the Bachelor’s Degree in Tourism in the Campus of Murcia and Cartagena. It is also worth reminding that UCAM is the only university of the region to be affiliated to the World Tourism Organization, since 2010.
The Catholic University also imparts masters’ degrees in Hospitality Management and in Innovation and Tourism Marketing. The Master's Degree in Innovation and Tourism Marketing is also imparted in English, and is attendend by students coming from all over the world and particularly Vietnam and India.
The World Tourism Organization is the specialized organism of the United Nations to promote sustainable tourism. The UNWTO has headquarters in Madrid.