Friday, January 24, 2020 (1:24 pm)

OC Fair & Event Center participates in newly launched county tourism workforce initiative

PATCH.COM Jan.24, 2020:

ANAHEIM, CA —When tourism is your most significant industry, it is only natural to look to the youth to find the future of your workforce. Enter Orange County’s Tourism Workforce Initiative, a plan to encourage and develop young minds into future paid employees within the city of Anaheim’s broad tourism trade.

The year-long county-wide program got off to a great start Thursday with speakers, videos, career resources, and prizes from local attractions, retail outlets, and more in a presentation to members of the junior and senior classes at Anaheim High School.

“This is going to be a game-changer,” said Anaheim Union High School District Superintendent Mike Matsuda in kicking off the event.

A customized transit bus, wrapped with images of tourism industry professionals and the initiative’s tagline “OC Tourism: Grow Great Careers Here,” was staged on the quad steps away from the auditorium where the program took place. The event began with a brief opening ceremony featuring remarks by Anaheim Union High School District Superintendent Michael Matsuda and Anaheim Mayor Pro Tem Stephen Faessel.

The presentation included talks by engaging young professionals in the tourism industry who shared their educational backgrounds and career paths, short videos by the California State University System on educational opportunities, and videos specifically on hospitality industry careers. Prize drawings featured tickets to Knott’s Berry Farm, the OC Fair, and Star Wars-themed gift bags from Disneyland Resort.

“When you have a dream, when you want to make something happen, you need a lot of support,” said Jay Burress, President, and CEO of Visit Anaheim and Chairman of the Initiative. “I want to thank those who have made this possible,” he continued as he recognized the partners.

Anaheim Resort Transportation, Visit Anaheim, Best VIP Chauffeured, California Community Colleges, California State University System, Orange County Community Services, Knott’s Berry Farm, Newport Beach & Co.,, Travel Costa Mesa, Visit Huntington Beach, OC Fair & Event Center, Visit Huntington Beach, Irvine Retail Properties and South Coast Plaza.

The launch was attended by several special guests including Anaheim Mayor Pro Tem Faessel; President of the Anaheim Union High School District Board of Trustees Annemarie Randle-Trejo; 4th District Orange County Supervisor Doug Chaffee; Anaheim Union High School District Superintendent Matsuda; Field Representative Rachel Rolnicki from the office of Congressman Lou Correa; District Director Norma Campos Kurtz from the office of Assemblyman Tom Daly and more.

“Anaheim is all about tourism,” said Anaheim Mayor Pro Tem Stephen Faessel. “We’re celebrating the opportunity of our Anaheim High students to consider careers in tourism.”