Sign up for the FREE Hospitality Heroes Program offer at Johnston Community College -- become a tourism ambassador! Sign up for the FREE Hospitality Heroes Program offered at Johnston Community College!

Since 2010, the Johnston County Visitors Bureau (JCVB) has partnered with Johnston Community College’s Small Business Center to offer the hospitality training course known as “Hospitality Heroes”.  This training course is offered online monthly and is FREE to new and existing tourism industry employees in the county.  Over the past three years, the program has had over 100 graduates.

“Having an easily accessible educational program for our visitor industry partners was a long-term goal of the bureau’s and with the help of Johnston Community College we are providing that service,” stated Donna Bailey-Taylor, Executive Director. “Knowing your product is the first step in sales and Johnston County is our tourism product; we consider every front line employee an ambassador for tourism.”

Over the summer break, Hospitality Heroes was updated to include information which will help students answer visitor questions when approached on the job.  Information important to know includes Johnston County’s new attractions, hotel openings, restaurants, and the many shopping and outlet opportunities available for visitors to enjoy.  Just having the basic information and knowing the Visitors Bureau provides marketing materials like the Visitors Guide, Visitor Maps, Event Calendars and Websites will help front-line employees find the resources they need to help visitors.

Facts and figures about national, state and local visitor spending, visitor demographic profiles and many additional resources have been updated.  The new Hospitality Heroes program features JCVB’s five new promotional YouTube videos based on the following themes: Agritourism, Arts & Entertainment, History & Heritage, Shopping New & Old, and Outdoor Recreation.  The new program also highlights the results of the Visitor Profile Study conducted by East Carolina University’s Center for Sustainable Tourism in 2013.

With course completion, each graduate will receive a Hospitality Heroes certificate, a gift bag from JCVB, and vouchers to local attractions within the county that they can visit complimentary.  Knowing more about the destination will help front line employees direct visitors, answer questions and help give them a better impression of our communities.