The University of The West Indies’ Chancellor Robert Bermudez’ virtual keynote address marked the official launch of The UWI Alumni Association Centre for Hotel and Tourism Management Chapter (UWIAA-CHTM).  The Chancellor noted that the Chapter was the first established under his tenure.

The UWI CHTM Virtual Reunion 2020 was the result of a year-long planning process by a team of CHTM graduates. With Initial plans to have an on-island, inperson reunion event impacted by the current COVID-
19 pandemic, the planning team decided to shift to a virtual event in June 2020.

The Virtual Reunion was held over the period October 2 – 3, 2020. The event included social gatherings as well as Round Table Discussions on Product Development and Sustainable Tourism, Education and Human Capital Development, Industry Investment and COVID-19 Best Practices.
Chancellor Bermudez exhorted over eighty (80) graduates who gathered on October 3 2020, to collaborate and cooperate, to engage and contribute as these actions were the key values for the new Chapter to gain success. These values, he asserted, will form the core of any successful effort to thrive and meaningfully contribute to the Caribbean Region’s Tourism and Hospitality industry. He noted the impact of COVID-19 upon the Region’s tourism activity; observing that the post-recovery era will be a significant challenge for all.


“…even at the moment
as we look at the
situation, it seems very
difficult to return to
what was normal …but
opportunity is being
created, we just have
to identify it an
optimize it for our
people and our islands”
Robert Bemudez
Chancellor of The UWI





Stalwart friends of The CHTM and its graduates were also in attendance at this signal event. These Included regional tourism luminaries such as
Vincent Vanderpool-Wallace, former Caribbean Tourism Organisation
Secretary General and Clifford Hamilton, present Senior Tourism Advisor to the Trinidad and Tobago Ministry of Tourism.
The Alumni and its Inaugural Executive were also congratulated by Mrs Celia Davidson-Francis, Director of Alumni Relations for The UWI. Davidson-Francis noted her pleasure at seeing the multi-cohort, multi-territory representation, a vital marker for a Regional effort intended to make a difference. Alumna and Current Acting Head of The CHTM, Dr Michelle McLeod was also present, serving later on in the proceedings as a panellist/presenter on the Education and Human Capital Development Round Table.


The UWIAA CHTM Chapter Executive, Led by its Inaugural President Richard Blades, graduate of 1992, now proceeds into the planning and execution phase of its activity to deliver a fully functional CHTM Alumni Chapter with a clear mandate and mission to impact Caribbean Tourism, provide graduate employment and student internship opportunities, drive philanthropic ventures and support industry-wide eMentorship programmes.


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