President Michel meets top tourism student


President Michel congratulating Ms Lavigne

Present with Ms Lavigne on her visit to State House was the Minister for Tourism and Culture, Alain St Ange, the principal of the Seychelles Tourism Academy (STA) Flavien Joubert, the chief executive of the Seychelles Tourism Board (STB) Elsia Grandcourt and Ms Lavigne’s proud father, Dennis Payette.

After winning the STA’s Best Academic Achiever Award in 2011, Ms Lavigne was selected for a scholarship to pursue her degree in hospitality management at the Shannon Hotel School of Management in Ireland.

“You and the other students have done well to make our country happy and proud,” said President Michel to Ms Lavigne. “You are a shining example of our students’ ability to excel. I hope you will make good use of your knowledge to build the Seychelles brand and be a role model for Seychellois tourism managers in the future.”

Ms Lavigne expressed her gratitude to President Michel and the government of Seychelles for their unwavering support and funding of the STA’s training programme.
As a prize for being the best overall student, Ms Lavigne won a scholarship worth €3000, which she says she would like to use to further her studies.

“I’m interested in doing a master’s degree in business studies or finance. Maybe in a year’s time, once I have acquired some experience I will pursue my studies further.”
When asked how she achieved such high marks in her studies, Ms Lavigne said she set high goals for herself and achieved them through self-discipline.

“I wanted to do well, so I ensured that I achieved the best marks I could for my coursework during the year and of course studied hard for my exams.”
“The experience was life-changing. I had to do a lot of growing up while I was there. I always say that I learned a lot at STA, but the international experience does wonders for your confidence. I remember the first time I had to serve a guest in a hotel, I was trembling, but now I’ve come back from Ireland I am so much more confident and I look forward to pleasing the guests and making them smile.”

Ms Lavigne’s accomplishment highlights the strategy and programmes being put into place by the STA to pave the way for Seychellois hospitality management professionals to take up key positions within the Seychelles tourism industry.

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