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DNA - Monday, August 10, 2009
Riding on the vocational wave
By - Gauri Rane and Prachi Nayak


Rhea Nasta, head designer, Rhea Studios Taking vocational training puts you on the on the career track sooner than the regular academic structure. I took up jewellery designing as I wanted to personalise my personal jewellery. In early 90s there were not many institutes which offered good curriculum for jewellery, so I signed up for a series of workshops by Decta a UK-based company. This gave me an international exposure which I had never experienced while learning from karigars in the Indian market.

Students who wish to join jewellery courses can begin early and also pursue specialisations like gemology, diamond grading or even market friendly portfolio's like quality control, retail merchandising etc. Jewellery is a lucrative vocation as well. A fresher can expect a salary of 1.2 lakh per annum, but I advise students to seek better companies rather than negotiate for a better pay. In the industry, your worth is not only based on your creativity but also on who you have worked with. Also, those who want to hone their skills, this is the right time, the market is low due to the economic slowdown and work coming in is also not that great so I feel people should complete as many courses and ready themselves when the markets open up again.

Indian Institute of Jewellery
Indian Institute of Gems and Jewellery
Rhea Studio

Sumeet Nagdev, founder director, Expressions Modern Dance Company
Dance has been my passion right from the beginning. I worked part time during by BMS degree and collected money to pursue several courses, right from classical to ballet and contemporary dance forms, I learnt as much as I could. I even trained abroad in New York and Singapore. There are three routes that one can take in this profession-dancer, dancer trainer and choreographer. Each of these is completely different. I decided to start my own dance company. In the last two years I have trained around 50,000 dancers in India and abroad and also choreographed for several projects. In India, Bollywood is over-rated as even dance professionals who work outside it have proved their mettle. The profession is not for those whose focus is earning lots of money; it is for those who want an extremely satisfying career and not a run of the mill job.

Nalanda Nritya Kala Mahavidyalaya (NNKM)
Expressions Modern Dance Company (EMDC)
Shiamak Davar Institute of Performing Arts (SDIPA)

Pranay Verdia, director rooms, Park Hyatt Goa Resort and Spa
The thought of interacting with people from across the globe on a daily basis drew me to this industry. Operations always presents one with the opportunity to work with people from diverse cultures and backgrounds.

A course equips one with in depth functioning of a hotel or resort.At the start of my training in operations, I thought it would always be the food and beverage department for me, until I started training in Rooms Hotel industry involves combination of various skills like management, food & beverage service, housekeeping, Rooms operation, Sales and Marketing, Finance. Hard work and perseverance are essential for progress in any industry. A practical first hand experiences helps you understand the dynamics of the job and choose the appropriate field.

Hotel management is a rewarding career option in the contemporary job market. Career training from a recognised and reputed hotel management institute is just an icing on the cake. The passion, dedication, commitment to serve people and ability to connect with people can take an individual long way. More and more domestic and International hotel chains have entered the Indian market with huge expansion and development plans which means demand for well trained quality personnel will grow impressively.

Atharva College of Hotel Management and Catering Technology
Kohinoor-IMI School of Hospitality Management, Khandala
ITM Institute of Hotel Management

Jamy Alex, senior executive, retail sales, SOTC
It was because of my passion to travel that I enrolled into an IATA foundation course four years ago. Because of erratic shifts, working in the cabin crew for airlines was not an option for me. Today, I design tour itineraries. It is the most fascinating job because we are sent on familiarisation tours to be able to study and sell locations in India and overseas. Starting off in the industry was tough, because reputed companies didn't hire freshers. The trick is to start off as a trainee at a stipend of Rs5,000 in a small agency and get at least six months experience After this the salary moves up to Rs10,000-12,000. Yearly appraisals help in raising one's designation. But for a lucrative career, one must gain substantial experience in one agency and shift jobs. Ticketing with airline companies and planning tour itineraries with tour operators are the two career tracks available. Those with excellent contacts and the confidence to tackle sturdy competition can also set up their own agency after six years in the industry.

Institute of Hotel Cargo and Tourism Management (IHCTM)
India International Trade Center (IITC)
Kuoni Academy

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