Two decades and two years ago, Dr. Gloria Baken Wong-Siy (AAHRMEI Founding President, now President Emeritus) created AAHRMEI with a vision to be an outstanding organization to serve as a vehicle for all schools offering Hotel and Restaurant Management, Tourism, Food Technology, Home Economics, Nutrition, and other related programs in the quest for leadership excellence among academicians and practitioners towards quality education for all stakeholders.
The passion got fueled by the positive response of the academe, government, and industry partners and AAHRMEI has never ceased to create a Bridgeway creating meaningful, relevant, timely, updated, engaging, and exciting training and seminars through virtual and in-person arrangements. The theme of this year’s convention is
“Recovery Strategies for Hospitality Tourism: Overcoming Diversity, Emotional Wellbeing and Phenomenon-Based Approaches to Education for Molding Global Hospitality and Tourism Professionals in the 4Ns”.
The country’s doors (seaports, airports, land transport hubs) have opened to graciously welcome the delegates from various regions of the archipelago to converge in an attractive accommodation with an idyllic backdrop, the world-renowned Boracay.
The national officers and AJAM (AAHRMEI Junior Associate Members) student leaders warmly received everyone for a three-day convention. Various topics have been articulated like the talk of Mr. Teddy Jimenez, founder of Turismo Pilipinas on “Recovery Strategies for Tourism Industry through a Unified Collaboration with the Academe”; Dr. Danny Cabulay, celebrated author and lecturer, dichotomized “Global and Smart Tourism Professionals in the 4Ns: Phenomenon-Based Approach to Education” through a very engaging lecture that each delegate had wanted for more; Dr. Ignacio Cordova, member of the Philippine Commission on Higher Education Technical Committee for Hospitality and Tourism Education and AAHRMEI Board of Advisers disclosed relevant statistics as he related those data to “HEIs Intervention in Making the Philippines Hotel and Tourism Education Competitive” which to our wonder have made “surprising” revelations; and the convention would never conclude without the “motherly” sharing of “Practical Solutions to Classroom Challenges in the New Normal” by Dr. Gloria Baken Wong-Siy. On a personal note, the quartet (Mr. Jimenez, Dr. Cabulay, Dr. Ignacio, and Dr. Siy) made a stellar performance that left the attendees wanting more.
Each day brought excitement (not to mention the “anticipated” island nightlife after each noon session) to more than 365 delegates and they were treated to meaningful learning sessions, al fresco dining, fellowship, and a night of fun, icebreakers, the crowning of Mr. and Ms. AAHRMEI Boracay 2022, election of new Board Members, oathtaking of new members, treasurer’s report, community singing, and exciting raffle prizes that almost “all” have gone home lucky and not empty-handed. Just on the third day, each has to bid farewell but not goodbyes because the next annual convention, as announced, will be held offshore and tentatively in Vietnam! Glady, the post-convention survey reveals that 95% of the attendees would still want to get reunited next year!
Kudos to the working committee chairs led by Dir. Evelyn Delleva-Antiporda and Dir. Melanie Rulla-Saro, Convention Chair, and Convention Co-chair, respectively. Special mention to Dr. Gloria “Mommy” Baken Wong-Siy for having the vision 22 years ago and the trumpets blow, likewise, to Dir. Vivian T. Dizon (our doting “Tita Vi”) for ensuring that all preparations shall proceed effortlessly. True to this, Together, Everyone AAHRMEIzes More! Indeed, it was a concrescence of esteemed education thinkers, active industry partners, committed student leaders, and movers of society and this convention is one for the books. Mabuhay, AAHRMIE!!!