The much-anticipated annual NZMA Hospitality and Cookery Careers Expo was held again last week and it was the biggest in the event’s five year history.
More than 900 skilled hospitality and cookery students attended along with 41 of New Zealand’s top industry employers – all the big hotel chains, numerous restaurants, cafés, bar chains, and more were there.
There were on-the-spot job interviews with some great results achieved, guest speakers inspired the students and informed them on what these potential employers had to offer, there were lots of opportunities for students to secure work experience, internships plus part-time and full-time roles in the industry.
And of course there were plenty of opportunities for students to show potential bosses their highly honed cooking and hospitality skills. Groups of students ran the ‘Koru Lounge’, an open kitchen space where visitors to the Expo could enjoy an amazing array of snacks and meals. On the Careers Expo Menu there were two offerings; breakfast and lunch, with three stations for each service – keeping the employers fed while the students had the chance to perform and shine in the kitchen.
Be Staff, a hospitality recruitment agency, accepted 60 CV’s from students, interviewed a short list of 40, with 30 students undergoing training after the expo, which finished at 2pm.
From 2pm onwards, some of the students had the chance to demonstrate their skills in tray carrying, plate serving and clearing, etc. Twenty five students were signed up for casual employment, signing contracts on the spot, and another five applications were in process at the end of the day.
Also at the Careers Expo, Big Bash, an agency that recruits for boxing events, recruited 14 students for an event in November and the CPG group, which has nine hotel properties in five locations in New Zealand is looking to hire several NZMA Cookery and Hospitality Internship students for their properties.