Learning about promoting tourism and the business of running a travel agency from a textbook can’t compare to a face-to-face discussion with people who do those activities on a daily basis. Bill Koegler’s Destination Marketing class and Annette Godown’s Introduction to Tourism and Event Management class each had field trips recently to find out how it’s done in the real world.
Uniglobe Travel in downtown Wheeling hosted Godown’s class, who discovered first-hand how bricks-and-mortar travel agencies are competing against the online travel websites. Owner Bill Bryson and staff discussed the many benefits a travel agent provides and what it is like to work in a travel agency. Several of Bryson’s agents are graduates of West Liberty University, the two most recent hires coming from the TEM program.
The I-70 West Virginia Welcome Center was the destination for Koegler’s group, who received a friendly WV welcome from manager Patti Hargleroad and staff. Students learned about the value the welcome center can provides for travelers and its importance in providing information about local attractions and businesses where travelers might want to stop, stay, or eat.
The WCOB appreciates the willingness of local organizations to invite students in for these unique opportunities.