IST College: the only college to get accreditation from UGC and foreign University simultaneously

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Samjhana Basnyat photo
Samjhana Basnyat

Samjhana Basnyat
Principal
International School of Tourism and Hotel Management

IST College was established in 2003 AD, which is affiliated to Salzburg University of Applied Sciences, Austria. The college was established with an objective to produce world class human resources for the field of hospitality industry. It has been offering FHS Diploma in Hotel Management (BHM) and FHS Diploma in Tourism Management (BTTM) to deliver the international standard in Nepal.

An MBA graduate of Kathmandu University, Samjhana Basnyat, who has been involved in hospitality sector for more than 15 years, is the Principal at IST College. IST students are well-recognized even in the crowd through their unique postures as the college grooms their personality development, positive attitude, discipline etc. Ms Basnyat shares her views on growing demand of hospitality-related human resources in Nepal. Excerpts:

Could you highlight the strength of international courses?

These programs are of international standard. The courses are updated and timely revised to meet the global need. The curriculums are delivered focusing on innovative management and competency development of students. In addition, the international course, which is studied in Nepal, required affordable fee structure whereas average Nepali students cannot afford the same education in a foreign land. Furthermore, this course has such a wide reputation that students will not find any difference whether it is acquired from a foreign land or Nepal since students enrolled in this program gain the same recognition. In addition, acquiring an international qualification staying with the family in their native land is most advantageous.

What are the distinct features of IST College?

IST College was established in 2004 AD with an objective to produce qualified human resources for hotel management and tourism management sectors. It has successfully produced 13 batches of graduates with outstanding results. As many as1000 students, who have been graduated from this college, have not remained unemployed. Our students have been recognized distinctively as IST students in crowds of staff through their body language, which is our great achievement.

We have successfully acquired an accreditation from the UGC. IST College is the only college to achieve such an institution accreditation in hotel management simultaneously with a foreign University accreditation. An institution accreditation can be achieved after fulfilling 120 criteria for quality maintenance. Apart from these features, the college focuses on personality development and development of positive attitude in students. It produces professional human resources required for hospitality industry in Nepal.

What type of education has IST College been imparting so that its students can be recognized through their postures?

We do not only focus on academic courses also we groom our students on personality development, positive attitude from the beginning of the course. Students can acquire knowledge from any institutions, but learning a positive attitude is a must in hospitality industry. If we fail to show positive attitude and discipline to our customers it’s no use getting involved in hospitality and tourism sector. In this regard, discipline with positive attitude is the most unique feature that our students have learned.   

How is the exam system of IST College?

IST College is affiliated to Salzburg University of Applied Sciences, Austria and the entire exam system is controlled by the University itself. The University monitors, controls, and conducts exams under its direct inspection and supervision during examination period and issues the certificate on the basis of the examinations. Students are sent to various countries, such as Austria, Dubai, Malaysia, etc for internship. Students will be paid during their internship by the employers.

Do you have any provision to provide credit transfer to students wishing to go to a foreign land to continue their education?

There is a facility of credit transfer of students to any foreign Universities, but it’s too costly to acquire a qualification from a foreign land, especially for Nepalese whose income is average in comparison to the world’s economy. Moreover, students have no facility of part time job in European countries since they have to study full time. In this regard, students should manage all the expenses incurred during their study period. Appallingly, very few students can succeed to attain a degree in such a case.

International bachelor’s degree is of both three years and four years. Which, do you think, is more rewarding?

European countries and India are also following the three-ear course tenure in bachelor level whereas Nepal and the USA have four years’ bachelor degree. The course quality depends on credit hours rather than the course duration. A minimum of 120-125 credit hours is required for a four-year bachelor degree in Nepal.

We have three years’ bachelor level course which engages students for full credit hours’ theory and practical-embedded classes. It means students who acquire a qualification from IST College are eligible to study in Austria, New Zealand and UK etc.

Nepal is celebrating ‘Tourism Year 2020’. What scope do you see in hospitality and tourism sector in Nepal?

Hospitality sector has a wealth of opportunities that can be transferred to passionate students of hotel management course. In other words, it’s the fountain of myriads of job prospects in the global setting. Since Nepal is one of the best destinations for tourists for their leisurely activities, it has high potentiality in tourism sector. In this context, its scope is tremendous. IN addition, the government campaign, ‘Visit Nepal 2020’ will create a huge scope of job opportunities for hospitality graduates. The human resources relating to hospitality sector not only have demand in tourism sector but also their demand is expanded to hospital, research center and many service-oriented sectors.

It is believed by Nepalese people that hotel management education is only for cooking and dishwashing. How do you clear such type of sterotype?

It is traditional mindset that hotel management education is only for cooking and dishwashing. But this mindset has drastically changed over a decade and the attraction has surprisingly increased among Nepalese people, particularly among youths. The charm of hospitality sector is increasing globally now. In this regard, the human resources produced from hospitality sector are demanded globally.

Most people have the mindset that it is easy to acquire an international degree rather than a degree from domestic University. What’s your say?

It is not good to put all the colleges and all the international Universities into one basket. The quality is determined in terms of level of Universities, background of the college management team, their qualifications, commitment and goals. So, before alleging them hypothetically, one should analyze the orientation of a particular college and the standard of the University which has given the affiliation. In our context, we are offering world-class education.

What would you like to suggest students who are in search of earning an international qualification in Nepal?

First of all, I would like to suggest that students should analyze background of management team of the college, offered subjects, stability of the college, fee structure and feedback of former students on college’s performance. Secondly, students should analyze their paying capacity and aptitude to give continuation to the course till the end. In addition, students should choose a subject of their interest and aim of life. We do not compromise on quality, so I suggest students they pay a visit IST College in order to secure a rewarding career.

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