IFT alumna & director of Pousada de Mong-Há – IFT Educational Hotel, Dr. Helena Lo, receives 2015 PATA Face of the Future Award

Dr. Helena Lo, the alumna of Institute for Tourism Studies, Macao (IFT) and Director of Pousada de Mong Há – Educational Hotel of IFT

Dr. Helena Lo, the alumna of Institute for Tourism Studies, Macao (IFT) and Director of Pousada de Mong Há – Educational Hotel of IFT, was honoured by The Pacific Asia Travel Association (PATA) with the 2015 PATA Face of the Future Award on 18 March, 2015. PATA’s Chief Executive Officer, Mr. Mario Hardy, said “Ms. Lo’s outstanding contribution to the responsible development of travel and tourism, specifically in the area of human capital development, is especially relevant today. “Her experience and insight will be most welcomed to the PATA Chairman in inviting her to join the PATA Executive Board as a non-voting member and observer”, he added. As a Macao native, Helena graduated from IFT in 2002 with a bachelor degree in Tourism Business Management. She joined the Pousada team after graduation, rising to be its head in 2012. Ms. Lo has furthered her studies, earning a master’s degree in Education and a doctorate degree in Business Administration. Her research interests include human resources and green hotel management. With a wealth of experience in the hotel industry, including almost 14 years overseeing the operations and development of Pousada de Mong-Há - the Educational Hotel and training unit of IFT, which has been recommended by Michelin Guide Hong Kong and Macao for 7 consecutive years and received Travelers’ Choice Award from TripAdvisor travel website for 5 consecutive years as well as 2013 Macao Green Hotel Gold Award. She also works closely with industry practitioners and maintains a network with the Macao hotel industry. “I am grateful to receive this prestigious award. This award gives me more energy and enthusiasms to further contribute to training future tourism talents”, Helena said. “The greatest achievement for me is to see my students achieving great careers after graduation; many of them pursued postgraduate degrees and have taken up prestigious positions in the tourism and hospitality industry”, she added. Founded in 1951, the Pacific Asia Travel Association (PATA) is a not-for profit association that is internationally acclaimed for acting as a catalyst for the responsible development of travel and tourism to, from and within the Asia Pacific region. The Association provides aligned advocacy, insightful research and innovative events to its member organisations, comprising 87 government, state and city tourism bodies, nearly 31 international airlines, airports and cruise lines, 61 educational institutions, and hundreds of travel industry companies in Asia Pacific and beyond. As the Associate Member, Education Committee Member, Industry Council Member and Council Representative to the PATA Board, IFT received the PATA Gold Award in “Education and Training”, which acknowledged the content and quality of IFT’s programmes in 1997 and was honoured the award again in 2002 for having set up the “Macao Occupational Skills Recognition System” (MORS) for the tourism and hospitality industry in collaboration with the European Union (EU).

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