By Jody Mayo

What happens when employers looking for hospitality talent meet talented hospitality interns who need work experience? We think it is a match made in heaven.

People support businesses making a social impact. International internship programs provide an important cultural element to the hotel and lodging industry.

As Texas lures more travelers from around the world to visit our communities, it is essential that they are greeted with both local charm and international flair. Business globalization creates demand for greater diversity, and consumer brand loyalty depends on the business character and philanthropy initiatives.

In an exclusive partnership with South Africa’s Ubuntu Institute, the Alliance Abroad Group is matching hospitality students, trainees, interns and young professionals with opportunities to work and train with Texas hotels, resorts, and other lodging establishments.

Alliance Abroad Group, a U.S. Department of State designated J-1 visa sponsor based in Austin Texas, in partnership with the Ubuntu Institute, has brought over 150 hospitality interns into Texas communities including Austin, San Antonio, Bryan and Horseshoe Bay.

H.R.H Princess Celenhle (Cee) Dlamin is the Ubuntu Institute’s Chief Operating Officer. Much like her grandfather, Nelson Mandela, Princess Cee is passionate about improving the lives of South Africans by providing them with skills, training, educational, and employment opportunities. Hospitality students and young professionals from disadvantaged communities are sent to the United States for 12 months to train in the hospitality industry, which is one of the fastest-growing industries in southern Africa.

Some of the United State’s most distinguished hotels and resorts are actively participating in the program. The interns, referred to as “Ubuntu Institute Fellows,” are placed in culinary arts, front desk, food and beverage, restaurant and food service management positions. Learning from their host employers, they are contributing to efficient and effective hotel operations, and provide warm, genuine hospitality in their various roles.

Program participation not only helps Texas businesses diversify their workforces with international talent, it makes a huge difference in the lives of the young adults. As a participating host employer, your hotel will have the opportunity to make an impact by providing underprivileged youths with life-changing training and work experience.

If you believe that your business can benefit from the enriching and personally rewarding experience of hosting an Ubuntu intern, we would love to get you started.

Contact Vanessa Noel at Alliance Abroad Group: or call 512.565.8405.

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