An ounce of practice is generally worth more than a ton of theory (Quote by Schumacher). To put theory into practice, students from the School of Tourism and Hospitality embarked on an intercultural study trip to Medan, Indonesia on the 5th of November 2017. The aim of the trip was to allow students to understand the development of cultural and heritage in Medan, as well as to understand the role of tourism and cultural industry in the country. This trip is extremely relevant to the students, because it comprises of the main objective of the module named “Tourism Culture and Heritage”.
The students visited religious and cultural heritage places such as the Grand Mosque of Medan (Masjid Raya Al Mashun), Istana Maimon of Sultan Deli, Sikh Gudwara, Anna Velangkani Church, Taman Alam Lumbini (Buddist Temple) and Samosir Island. Furthermore, they learnt about the history and the conservation of those cultural places. These locations have their own unique meaningful stories. For instance, the Grand Mosque of Medan is one of the remaining historical buildings of the Sultan of Deli, and it is still used by Muslims for their daily prayers. The architectural style of the Grand Mosque is the combination of Middle Eastern, Indian and Spanish elements. Along their journey, they also learnt about agro-tourism at Taman Simalen Resort.
The trip ended on 9th November 2017. Overall, the trip gave all students a good insight on cultural and heritage tourism in a developing country. This equips them with a better understanding on how to apply the theory they learnt from their modules into real life, and propel them towards understanding and accepting the vast array of culture and community perspectives. Lastly, the students have gained more personal awareness to allow them to further develop soft skills such as self-confidence, self-esteem and resilience, which will help them excel in their career.