This past wednesday I finished a 10.5 hour hospitality and tourism certification program called “Destination Lehigh Valley,” which is conducted semi-annually by Northampton Community College (NCC) and Discover Lehigh Valley. The course is intended to provide new hires to the tourism industry with a greater understanding of the importance that superior customer service and hospitality have in our industry. With roughly 23,000 jobs in Lehigh Valley revolving around tourism, this course could really be beneficial for a lot of service industry businesses in Lehigh Valley.

David Schweiger, the director of the Hotel and Restaurant Management Program and Hospitality Career Institute at NCC (he might also hold the Guinness World Record for longest job title ever), conducted this certification in conjunction with Mike Stershic, President of Discover Lehigh Valley.

The first two classes were basic customer service statistics, class discussions and case studies, but the last class was what I was looking forward to most. It was a 3-hour tour (insert Gilligan’s Island joke here) meandering our way through Lehigh Valley’s picturesque cities and towns, visiting popular destinations such as Martin Guitar Factory, Two Rivers Landing, Valley Preferred Cycling Center and finishing up with a delicious lunch at Burgers & More by Emeril in Sands Casino Resort Bethlehem.

I met some really cool people in the class, and all-in-all it was a pretty fun way to spend a few Wednesday mornings (It was also nice to get out of the office and stretch my legs a bit). After taking the tour ,I have a list of about a million things that I want to do this summer in Lehigh Valley so I imagine I’m going to be pretty busy.

If you’re interested in signing up for Destination Lehigh Valley, or you think this short course could help an employee of yours get oriented to the area, then follow this link to sign up for the next course at Northampton Community College.

Is this a course any of you would be interested in? If you have any questions regarding the details, feel free to leave them in the comment section under this post. Have a safe and happy Memorial Day weekend!