Ramandeep Kaur | NT KURIOCITY
Student of V M Salgaocar Institute of International Hospitality Education (VMSIIHE), Lionel Noronha was awarded the Outstanding Student Award. Each year the college presents the award to the brightest and most talented student of the college.
Lionel completed his schooling at Vidya Vikas Academy, Margao up till class 12 and then joined VMSIIHE to gain a BSc degree in hospitality education. Currently training at Goa Marriott Resort and Spa, in the front office department, Lionel aims to someday become the general manager of one of the many Marriott hotels.
The 20-year-old who hails from Loutolim first came to know about the award when his senior won it. “Up until then we didn’t know that there was an award for outstanding students. However, once I became aware of the award, I made it my goal to perform well even, though I had been performing well since the first year. I put a lot of effort both in curricular and extracurricular activities,” he said adding that he also maintained good relationships with everyone as it’s not only about performing well in academics but becoming an all-rounder in college.
Explaining what drew him to the hospitality industry, he says: “When I was a child we used to go on a lot of family holidays especially to the Marriott and other places in Goa and when I saw the people working there I liked the profession. I realised this when I was probably in class eight and I felt that this is what I would like doing and if I can do it as a job then why not.”
Speaking about the challenges and benefits of working in a hospitality industry, Lionel says that challenges are definitely long working hours and working during public holidays and weekends. He adds: “People often think that it is all fun and games but it is not. We actually put in a lot of hard work to ensure customers have a wonderful experience to remember. When I am in front office I get the chance to interact with a lot of people and that is something I really like doing.”
Lionel recently went on a student exchange programme to Portugal, describing the experience he says it was amazing because it’s not something he has ever done before. One month away from his family and country was an entirely new experience for him. He says: “We not only know about the culinary experience but also know about the wine, the places and Portuguese culture. It was really a great experience being with friends and meeting students from Portugal and learning their culture. I will recommend anyone who has an opportunity to go to Portugal and experience the fascinating cuisine and culture of the country.”
While his hobbies include playing football and other sports like table tennis, badminton, Lionel also enjoys the occasional videogame and watching movies over the weekends.