Ashley Lim

Ashley Lim

Hostess, The Grill - SkyCity Auckland
Bachelor of International Hospitality Management in Accommodation and Human Resource Management

The Bachelor of International Hospitality Management is a great mix of hospitality and business skills, says Ashley Lim.

“I would recommend this degree, particularly to people who want to learn about the business side of the hospitality and tourism industry. I initially planned to study business; however I realised that I loved being with people and interacting with others, and wanted to pursue a career that was more hospitality-based than corporate-based.

“The degree has given me the flexibility to follow two different careers as it’s not focused solely on hospitality but also gives you exposure to the departments of the business world.”

Ashley’s studies have helped her develop essential skills for her career, no matter where the future takes her.

“The degree teaches you the importance of knowing your strengths, weaknesses and the essential aspects you need to focus on when job hunting after university. Furthermore, the emphasis on building good relationships and a strong network not only makes it easier to find jobs but also build reliable connections for the future.”

Finding her path
Ashley’s initial plan after high school was to become a flight attendant.

“Initially, my intended plan after high school was to study a tourism course at a private training establishment, and then go straight into flight attending. However, I was reminded that it’s always good to have a back-up in case your intended option does not go as planned. Because AUT has such a strong reputation both nationally and internationally, I knew that even if something disrupted my path to my ideal career I would have a degree from an established university. Even with the impact of COVID-19, this degree has given me something to fall back on.”

While she still dreams of eventually working as a flight attendant in future, Ashley says her time at AUT has opened her eyes to the different careers a hospitality degree can lead to.

“With the majors I chose I expected to pursue a career as a hotel manager. However, when I completed my workplace experience at the end of my degree, I had the chance to gain practical experience in recruitment and marketing. This made me realise that I eventually want to secure a career in talent acquisition or student recruitment.

“Currently, I'm furthering my study by learning two languages at another university this year before going into full-time work. This not only helps my CV, but also improves my life skills and expands my potential career opportunities. I’ve also been working at a SkyCity restaurant for the past year, giving me first-hand experience in the restaurant industry.”

Advice for other students
Ashley has some great advice for other students.

“My advice would be to build strong relationships, not just with your friends, but also with your lecturers and other vital individuals. This will not only make your university life more fun, but can also benefit you in group projects or classes.

“Don’t forget to take advantage of events like career fairs or visits from guest speakers. They’ll help you develop the skills to confidently talk to recruitment agents or representatives from big companies, and land a job in your potential dream career. The Hospitality and Tourism Career Fair enabled me to connect with one of the recruitment agents at Air New Zealand and gained me a summer job, which was the best job I've had.”

AUT offers plenty of support for students, she adds.

“Personally, the biggest challenge I faced at university was moving to online learning during the lockdown periods of COVID-19. However, AUT's lecturers and staff helped us manage throughout the lockdown, and AUT listened to how students wanted to proceed throughout the rest of the year. That made it manageable to get through it.”

*The Accommodation and Human Resource Management majors have been replaced by the new Hospitality Enterprise and Hospitality Management majors.

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