By Jessica Tuggle
VERO BEACH -- Indian River State College and a number of partners are bringing hospitality courses back to Indian River County.
The county has 778 establishments identified to be in the leisure and hospitality industry and currently 5,612 people are employed in that sector, according to statistics by the Florida Labor Market.
Several of those establishments, including John's Island Beach Club, Orchid Island Golf and Beach Club and Quail Valley Golf Club, are interested in continuing to build up the industry workforce with quality employees and have partnered with the college and Workforce Solutions to offer the hospitality and restaurant management training program right in their backyard.
The certificate course, used by the National Restaurant Education Association, will explore trends and environment in upscale dining and customer service, a press release said.
Classes start at the Indian River State College Mueller Campus in the Richardson Center on July 15 and will end on Aug. 23.
Topics will include food and bar knowledge, dining and bar set-ups, basic sanitation, selling techniques and more.
The program is free to eligible candidates. Course graduates will have the opportunity to compete for open positions by the program partners.
The restaurant and hospitality fields fit under the umbrella of the tourism industry, said Odaly Victorio, spokeswoman for Workforce Solutions.
Total visitors to Florida have been increasing steadily since 2010, going from 82.3 million, to 87.3 million to 91.4 million just last year.
The tourism financial impact statewide in last year alone was $71.8 billion.
In Indian River County, tourist tax revenue has shown an increase from 2012 to 2013. Taxes in March 2012 were $267,951, but in March 2013, the numbers were $280,720, showing a 4.8 percent increase.
The nonprofit Workforce Solutions exists to create and manage a workforce development service for business and job seekers, and the hospitality training course fits in perfectly with that goal.
For more information about the hospitality training course with the corporate and community training institute at Indian River State College, contact Workforce Solutions at (772) 494-2100, Ext. 305.