School of Tourism and Hospitality Management Sant Ignasi (Barcelona) " World Tourism Day Statement"
This past Friday, September 26th, the School of Tourism and Hospitality Management Sant Ignasi (HTSI) celebrated World Tourism Day (promoted by the World Tourism Organization) with the publication of a statement on "Tourism and Community Development", theme around which the celebration has centered this year. In lecture rooms, HTSI students reflect this public statement, which underlines the faculty´s wish to "unite their academic effort to all institutions and organs of society to seek the harmonious development of relations between tourism, hospitality and the lives of men and women who open their populations and social environments in a spirit of hospitality that humanizes us and builds the future of our global planetary community. " The School of Tourism and Hospitality Management Sant Ignasi defends this manifesto whereby tourism "opens us to discovery, to creative curiosity, but especially it opens us to the exchange of values and ways of understanding the world" and reaffirms that "sharing the wealth of identity inherent in tourism is artistic, every trip becomes a canvas that is colored with the impressions that tourists visiting bring in together with the hospitality of local communities.¨ Despite this, HTSI wishes to emphasize that "there are certain types of tourism which do not collaborate in community empowerment but rather degrade or may even destroy it" and cites cases such as Venice or Barcelona itself, stating that "this tourism is not the tourism we wish to promote: the new millennium tourists seeks authenticity and real contact, because it is in feeling and experiencing something that leaves a mark. Real exchange with the local community can provide this." Finally, HTSI points out that "developing our own values and communicating through the tourism profession should be the objective of all men and women living with and from tourism. HTSI believes that we have not reached any limit for tourism in our country and we still have much to be thankful for and to offer in our industry, such as mutual benefits for the locals and visitors alike. 4th year HTSI students as part of the module "Managing the Tourism Experience" developed a collaborative document, agreed by all students from different nationalities (Netherlands, Norway, United States, United Kingdom, Spain, and the Czech Republic) which gave their vision of tourism and reflected on their relationship with the development of local communities.