Young professionals can get leg up in booming industry

YOUNG professionals from Ipswich working in the tourism industry are encouraged to apply for a chance to gain invaluable experience from senior figures, in the midst of an unprecedented "wave of investment" in the sector.

The Queensland Tourism Industry Council's six-month young professionals mentoring program is open for applications.

Successful applicants under 35 are matched with highly experienced senior industry professionals to gain "priceless" experience and knowledge.

QITC chief executive Daniel Gschwind said southeast Queensland is in the middle of a tourism boom and urged people from Ipswich to get a leg up by getting involved in the initiative.

"A few years ago, we recognised there was a really important role that mentoring played in our industry," he said.

"It's maybe an art that's been a little bit forgotten. The result of the partnerships were so encouraging that the program has been expanded from year to year.

"The benefits are significant in terms of giving young people a clearer direction, giving them new ideas and opening up new doors for them into a long term career. It's challenging. It inspires you to do better."

Mr Gschwind said demand for tourism and hospitality services has never been higher and is on the rise.

"We have never seen a wave of investment into tourism as we currently observe in Queensland," he said.

"It's in the tens of billions of dollars of tourism investment going into Queensland as we speak. We have never seen anything on that scale.

"More and more people across the generations, from the millennials to the baby boomers, allocate more disposable income to experience as opposed to buying just more goods. The World Tourism Organisation is predicting globally, tourism demand will grow and the tourism economy will grow at nearly twice the rate as the rest of the economy.

"This is supported by the rise of the middle class in some developing countries. That really makes for a pretty bright future for our industry.

"Queensland is on that trend line to grow significantly and generate jobs. We have been a substantial contributor to job growth in Queensland with now almost one in 10 Queenslanders are employed in tourism and hospitality. The diversity of jobs is really breathtaking. Queen's Wharf is one very prominent (project) but we have related projects like the investment into the Brisbane Airport which will put us on par in terms of aviation capacity with Singapore."

Applications close at 5pm on November 17. Visit the QITC website to apply.