Degree and University: Adventure Recreation Management, Harper Adams University
Which TUI graduate scheme you’re on: 2014 TUI UK & I Graduate Leadership Programme
What are you doing in your current assignment?: I’m working in the Product Planning department, looking at how we can keep monitoring and improving the quality of our holidays.
What is your favourite thing about working at TUI?:
I love the fact there are so many development opportunities, if you want to better understand a part of the business or work on your personal development there’s always someone willing to give you their time or a course that you can enrol on. The general working environment is great too, the office is open plan, there’s always something going on (though far too many cake sales!) and there’s definitely a sense of being a team and working towards shared goals.
For the less corporate answer I love that work sometimes involves jetting off to sunnier climes (I’m just back from a few days of looking at our hotels in Tenerife) and that we now have a Costa in the office. Skinny hazelnut cortado please.
What were you doing at this time last year?: This time last year I was working for Tourdust (an independent adventure holiday company) and was franticly trying to find my passport for a last minute research trip to Trinidad. It was located just in time, found at the back of the sock draw – a perfectly logical and safe place to keep it.
What has been your best holiday? Taking a road trip through Morocco all the way down to the Sahara. Starting in Marrakech we’d driven out of the city, through the Atlas Mountains (very high, twisting passes, fun to drive, apparently not so much fun for the passenger) and miles of baron plain to get to the desert. On arrival we left the car and headed out by 4×4 to the deep dunes. Here we drank mint tea and watched the sun go down. As it was just us and our guide it was incredibly atmospheric and the first time I’ve ever experienced real wilderness.
What’s your proudest achievement and why? When I was 16 I decided to leave home and join the Army, probably one of my more extreme spur of the moment decisions. At first I found it incredibly tough, the training was intense and it was very different from my old life – all of a sudden people were shouting at me for strange reasons, making me do press ups as well as lots of kit ironing and drill (a complete nightmare for the uncoordinated!). Getting through this, and the consequent 6 years with the Royal Signals (which thankfully was a little more relaxed) is something I’m definitely proud of, though looking back I sometimes can’t quite believe that I actually did it. I think that’s why I have to periodically climb over a wall or leopard crawl through the mud… just to double check I still can.
Who would be your ideal dinner party guest and why? Can I resurrect someone? If that’s ok then it would have to be Spike Milligan, he’d be a hilarious guest and I have a feeling he wouldn’t mind that I can’t cook so long as there was a good supply of wine.
Which world landmark would you most like to visit in the future and why? I’d love to see Angkor Wat in Cambodia, though I’d want to go really early in the morning before there are too many people about. It’s on my hit list after doing a uni project on the country – it’s got such a historical significance and from looking at the pictures, I love how much of it is unrestored, just tangled up with the undergrowth. If I had a few weeks I’d also be able to combine it with a bit of time in Thailand, perfect!