March 1, 2023 | By Bronwen Largier

New Zealand’s business events industry association, Business Events Industry Aotearoa (BEIA) has taken on 25 industry up-and-comers to be mentored in the tenth year of the association’s mentoring program, while in Australia, the federal government has opened expressions of interest for mentors to be part of a new $10 million First Nations Tourism Mentoring Program.

Now in its 10th year, the 25 mentor-mentee pairs taking part in BEIA’s BE Mentored program will work together for six months, with senior managers from the industry advising mentees coming from event management, tourism and hospitality backgrounds.

“New Zealand’s business events capacity and its people capabilities go hand in hand. With New Zealand in high demand on the world stage, it is more important than ever to be nurturing and developing our business events talent,” said BEIA CEO, Lisa Hopkins.

“With support from Tourism New Zealand, we are able to offer this highly sought-after programme with real benefits for all participants.

“The response from both mentors and mentees who took part in previous programs has been outstanding. We give mentees a personal support system, to help both professionally and personally, while mentors have the chance to share and give back to the sector, nurturing and sharing the wisdom of their experience,” said Hopkins.

The BE Mentored program kicked off for 2023 on Monday, with a launch day for mentors and mentees, giving each group insights aligning to their career stages.

Between now and August, each pair will meet at least six times.

In Australia, expressions of interest have opened as mentors are sought for a new Indigenous tourism mentoring program being overseen by PwC’s Indigenous Consulting (PIC) in partnership with Intrepid Travel and Welcome to Country, a social enterprise working to elevate First Nations tourism and retail.

“It is great to see continued commitment to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Tourism,” said PIC partner Kate Healy.

“We are very excited to work with the sector and administer this program and look forward to partnering with Welcome to Country and Intrepid Travel.”

CEO of Welcome to Country Desmond Campbell said Indigenous tourism was in an exciting and prosperous period.

“We want to ensure this is shared no matter where an operator comes from. This innovative mentoring program will provide our communities with what they need on their terms. And we look forward to working together in partnership with PIC and Intrepid to build and deliver this program strengthening the industry as a whole,” said Campbell.

Potential mentors can submit an expression of interest on the First Nations Tourism Mentoring Program by April 11 to be considered.