Back in 2018, our First President – Elbasy Nursultan Nazarbayev, during a visiting meeting in the Akmola region, noting the importance of the development of the domestic tourism industry, gave a protocol order to create the first specialized International University of Tourism and Hospitality in the country.
In turn, the Head of State Kassym-Jomart Tokayev during the international tourism forum “Ulytau-2019” stated the need to train qualified personnel in the field of tourism, as our country has something to offer the world in this difficult, but perhaps the most interesting area.
Thus, the International University of Tourism and Hospitality under the Ministry of Culture and Sports of the Republic of Kazakhstan was established by the decree of the Government of the Republic of Kazakhstan in March 2019.
And it is very symbolic that the International University opened its doors in Turkestan, an ancient city located in the heart of the Silk Road.
It was here, exactly two years ago, that the Elbasy laid the first stone in a large-scale construction. And now the magnificent architectural ensemble of the city has been supplemented with the University buildings in the oriental style.
Currently, the University conducts the educational process in six educational programs – organization of the tourism and hospitality industry, international and domestic tourism, organization of excursion services and individual tours, hotel and restaurant business, management of tourist destinations, physical culture and sports.
The best Russian and foreign professors were invited to the University. The teaching staff consists of 37 teachers: 12-professors; 11-doctors and candidates of sciences, 4 foreign professors.
In 2020, its first academic year, the University enrolled 588 students from different regions of the country. This figure indicates the high interest of modern youth in the tourism sector, the rich potential of which we will have to reveal together.
The University is rightly proud of its students, among whom 22 students are the owners of “Altyn Belgi”, 34-graduated from school with honors, 45-winners of international sports competitions, and are candidates and masters of sports.
By the way, the sports building of the University includes football, wrestling and boxing halls, a gym – all this is for students of the higher educational institution.
Students who came to study in Turkestan from different parts of the country not only joined the educational process, but also took a number of initiatives to actively develop student life. And we must pay tribute to the guys, they have achieved the desired goal – student life has begun to boil.
Thus, with the support of the University administration, the Aq niet volunteer club, the University’s Student Parliament were established, and cooperation with the Center for Youth Initiatives of the Turkestan Region was established.
What is characteristic, the guys, as they say, immediately “rushed into battle” – they took part in the environmental campaign “Taza Meken” on the territory of the sacred objects Orangay, Kusshi Ata, and just recently, led by the leadership of the University and University staff, they held the action “Atadan mal kalgansha tal kalsyn” for planting seedlings in the microdistrict “Otyrar”.
Of course, it is necessary to note the daily involvement of students in various types of round tables, seminars, online webinars, conferences and motivational trainings.
Only in October-November, the University organized such events as: a round table on the topic “Youth and science: problems and prospects”, an event on the prevention of religious extremism and terrorism ” Independent Kazakhstan – the secular state”, a virtual international conference jointly with the private Indonesian university Al Asiariah Mandar “Building institutions for sustainable development: Education, Economics, Research and Practice”, a panel discussion with one of the leading universities in India Ajeenkya DY Patil on “The state and prospects of the tourism industry in the post-covid period”, and many others.
Taking into account the simple fact that everything is much easier to learn and remember in practice, the University regularly organizes visiting master classes for students to master the art of hotel and restaurant business, in small groups and with respect to social distance. In this sense, the University has established an extensive network of partnerships – this is the Rixos hotel Turkistan, the hotel and restaurant complex “Eden”, “Silk Way”, “Central Kazakhstan Association of Tourism, Hotel, Restaurant and Handicraft Business”, “Kazakh Tourist Association”, “Association of Tour Operators of the Republic of Kazakhstan”, “Kazakh Association of Hotels and Restaurants”,” Astana Hotel Management “LLP,” Astana Hotel Management ” LLP “President Hotel ” and many others.
The crowning achievement of such an attentive and individual attitude to students was the creation of the language center “Excellence”, where students will not only develop their skills in foreign languages, but also deepen their knowledge of the culture and traditions of the countries and peoples whose languages they are studying.
Here, the University is particularly assisted by the representative Office of the European Union and the British Council in Kazakhstan, with which an agreement has been reached on both in-depth study of foreign languages and cooperation in the field of European educational programs.
Within the framework of the Center, courses in English, French, Chinese, Arabic and Turkish are conducted.
In general, the development of human capital, the formation of young people as individuals who are ready to boldly overcome the waves of challenges of the modern world, and their training as first-class specialists in the field of tourism and hospitality, who will be in demand both at home and abroad – the main task of the University.
The University constantly establishes and develops contacts with its foreign partners, the number of which is constantly growing from day to day.
These are the Institute of Tourism and Hotel Management in Salzburg, Austria, the International University of Tourism “Silk Road” in Samarkand, Uzbekistan, “Taylor University” Malaysia, the Institute of Cultural Heritage in Sharjah, UAE, the Pegasus Educational Group “KinderWorld” Singapore, the Peoples ‘ Friendship University of Russia in Moscow, the Russian Federation, the Academy of Tourism in Antalya, Turkey.
Currently, the University management has agreements on cooperation with leading higher education institutions in the United States, France, Italy, Portugal, Slovakia, Hong Kong, India and others.
The University’s cooperation with international organizations, such as UNESCO (a specialized agency of the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization) and the United Nations UNWTO (the United Nations World Tourism Organization), is a common thread.
The interaction of the University with the above-mentioned international organizations, with the most authoritative Swiss schools of hospitality and management in the field of hotel business Les Roches and SHL, as well as the opening of the UNWTO Center, will allow the University not only to become a leader in the region, but also the third such educational center in the world after Portugal and Spain, and in addition to the appropriate accreditation, graduates will receive two international diplomas.
Here, of course, we must also pay tribute to the local executive bodies. Akim of the Turkestan region Umirzak Estayevich Shukeyev keeps his finger on the pulse and personally supports the development of the University of this level.
And not for the sake of a red word, we can say that at present the history of the University is being made, the first specialized higher educational institution of its kind to train qualified personnel for the development of the tourism industry of Kazakhstan, for the future of our country.
The history of the city, where the unique University is located, is the history of the Kazakh people. The revival and renewal of ancient Turkestan will always be under the control of Elbasy Nursultan Nazarbayev as the architect of the historical process. This was repeatedly noted by President Kassym-Jomart Tokayev himself. The history of the ancestors calls for achievements. This is the understanding of the mission of the people who remember and honor the great heritage.
In this sense, the International University of Tourism and Hospitality is proud to be a part of this Great Heritage.