Zimbabwe Tourism Authority (ZTA) board chairperson, Raymond Mawerera, says the days when parents decided their children’s careers, are over.
Speaking at a prize-giving day at Lady Ereneta International High School, Mawerera urged parents to openly discuss career choices with their children.
Mawerera urged students to consider a career in tourism, stating that there are many options available within the sector, including working in tourism management, hospitality, transport and food and beverages.
“I am sure parents have heard the stories of children that pursued academic careers that their parents, but not themselves, wanted,” said Mawerera.
“An uninspiring story that keeps doing the rounds is about a young man who spent seven years at medical school and, soon after his graduation party, he handed over his certificate to his father and said ‘dad, here is your degree, now I am going to do what I want’ and proceeded to join a music band.
“I do not want to be misunderstood.
“I am not saying do not get involved in your child’s career choice, but I am only urging us, as parents, to create an atmosphere in our homes in which we can sit down with our sons and daughters and discuss openly about where they want their lives to go.
“Our children are products of what they learn and experience and this is mostly at home and at school, where they spend the bulk of their time.”
“Jobs cannot keep up with the numbers of students that we churn out every year and the challenge is finding solutions that will alleviate the problem of highly educated young people roaming the streets.
“The ones we have been giving birth to are a restless lot, but they are very fast.”
He urged students to consider a Tourism and Hospitality degree.
“You can work in marketing, advertising, public relations, ICT, or photography.
“One can be a chef. You can be a travel writer or blogger, you can work in destination management or you can work anywhere along the tourism value chain,” said Mawere.