Eileen: A passion for hospitality

With qualifications in business, IT, marketing, hospitality management, accounting and wine education, Eileen’s commitment to learning has paid off with a challenging and rewarding career. She graduated as Dux from Le Cordon Bleu’s Master of International Hospitality Management and now works for Pernod Ricard Australia. With her eye on the future, Eileen is exploring promotion opportunities and intends to complete further study with a PhD in hospitality management.

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How did you get into the hospitality industry?

I was raised in a family who work in hospitality, but I started in the industry a bit later. After secondary school, I studied a Diploma in Business (IT) in Singapore and a Bachelor of Business (Marketing) at RMIT University. It wasn’t until my mid-twenties that I decided to study hospitality management at Le Cordon Bleu. Because I came to the hospitality a little late, I’ve worked really hard by studying and working in the industry to develop the skills I need.

What sort of work experience have you had since graduating?

I’ve worked at the Intercontinental Hotel and Adelaide Casino. My first full-time job after graduating was at Sean’s Kitchen, and I then became Duty Manager at Madame Hanoi, both restaurants at the casino. I’ve worked in food and beverage, rooms division, cafes and fine dining. My passion for the industry is my secret to success. I believe in working from the bottom to the top. You have to be willing to do every job, to study and improve constantly. Otherwise, you’ll be left behind.

Tell us about your current role at Pernod Ricard.

I’m now at Pernod Ricard Australia working as the Brand Experience Manager for the wine brand, St Hugo. It’s a challenging role where I run daily operations, create strategies, oversee profit and loss, manage a team of 25 and more. The hospitality industry is very rewarding and always evolving, so you need to be open to discover new things.

What’s your five-year plan?

My five-year plan involves exploring promotion opportunities with Pernod Ricard. I’d also like to do a PhD in hospitality management and would love to teach at Le Cordon Bleu as well.

How do you like life in Adelaide?

It’s a great place to work and study. Australia is like my second home. I’ve lived here for over ten years. I love that Adelaide is a peaceful, spacious and uncluttered city. The hospitality industry is really growing with new venues opening all the time. South Australia is on the verge of a major transformation in the hospitality sector.

What’s your advice for other students and graduates?

Never stop learning. Trust yourself and continuously challenge yourself with work and study.

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