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The Role of Work Experience in Studying and Career Development in Tourism: A Case Study of Tourism and Hospitality Students from Northern Poland



Objective: The aim of this study is to develop and test a research model that investigates relationships between students’ perception of the nature of tourism work and industry-person congeniality and both their burnout and engagement in their studies, both of which may relate significantly with students’ career aspirations in tourism.

Research Design & Methods: 158 tourism and hospitality students with work experience in the tourism industry filled in an anonymous paper-based self-administrated questionnaires.

Findings: There are positive and significant correlations between perceived nature of tourism work, industry-person congeniality and students’ dedication. Simultaneously, the perceived nature of tourism work and industry-person congeniality correlate negatively with students’ cynicism towards their studies.

Implications & Recommendations: There is a need for putting a greater concern on the person-job fit during both enrolment procedures for tourism and hospitality courses in higher education and while recruiting candidates for service job positions in the tourism industry. Greater attention should be put by practitioners on students’ work experience, as it may have an impact on the youth’s attitudes towards their future employment in tourism.

Contribution & Value Added: The research value of this study may result from the fact that both students’ burnout and engagement has not been widely explored in the management literature.


nature of tourism work, industry-person congeniality, students’ engagement, burnout, employment aspirations



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