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Study sustainable tourism

03.03.2020- A contribution by Gina Kümmel


An experience report

Who doesn't know them, annoying questions about future plans after graduating from high school! Some have clear ideas about what they want to do and still others wander hopelessly back and forth in the jungle of study and training opportunities. Tourism has always been an interesting industry for me, but I didn't want to complete the classic dry tourism degree. That's why I searched the Internet for various tourism courses in North Rhine-Westphalia and came across the course in sustainable tourism by chance. The name of the course immediately piqued my interest and I began to find out more about it. In contrast to the classic tourism courses, such as B. Tourism industry, tourism management or health and sports tourism, the Sustainable Tourism degree program differs in its ecological component. As in other tourism courses, it is made clear at the beginning that tourism is the most important economic factor in many countries. On the one hand, tourism creates new jobs for the local population, on the other hand, the environment is increasingly affected.

At this point we come to the topic of sustainable tourism. One of the aims of this course is that the graduates develop sustainable tourism concepts and thus promote sustainable tourism in certain destinations. For this reason, the Sustainable Tourism course was introduced at the HSRW Kleve and is so far the only location in all of Germany. A standard study period of seven semesters (three and a half years) is stipulated for this bachelor's degree, with the option of studying dual or full-time. Now let's take a closer look at the structure of the course. In the first three semesters, students are taught basic knowledge of the tourism industry, e. B. from the areas of destination management, business administration and mathematics. The knowledge acquired is then deepened in the following two semesters. In the sixth semester, you have the option to choose between a semester abroad or a practical semester so that the theoretical knowledge can now be applied in practice. The preparation of the bachelor thesis takes place in the seventh semester, the students receive a lot of support from the university through so-called block events. There the exact structure and the formalities of a bachelor thesis are conveyed. After successfully completing the course, graduates have two options. Firstly, continuation of the course with completion of the master’s degree and later specialization in sustainability. Second, the path into the professional world and activities such as B. in tourism and travel management, in tourism planning, in environmental organizations etc.

I am now studying sustainable tourism in my second semester and I am very happy with my choice. All of my interests, especially the subjects of destination management and ecology and sustainability, were dealt with in great detail and deepened through a lot of practical work. Our professors attach great importance to the fact that the topics are not only taught theoretically, but can also be put into practice. This includes project work, data analysis and presentations. The latter is specially trained in this course, as tourism professionals must be able to present in front of many people and to sell people something credible. I particularly like the fact that our subjects are always changing and that we have new subjects on the schedule that the semesters before us did not have and will no longer have. This is because students and professors sit down after graduation and discuss which subjects are or would be useful for this course. Thanks to the regular exchange, it is possible that the module handbook for the degree program will be changed and adapted.


Even if my degree is only two years from now, I already have a clear idea of ​​what I want to do later. I would like to work in nature conservation later and sensitize tourists to nature. Especially in the lectures of the subject “Ecology and Sustainability” we talked about the negative consequences of tourism e.g. B. spoken in national parks that the tourists cause. These include B. Destruction of flora and fauna. In this regard, it is necessary that more educational work is done in order to induce tourists to observe certain rules for the protection of nature. I would like to support and expand this concept.

Also interesting: studying sustainability management - there are these sustainable courses


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