The 2ТМ Chief Manager Tatyana Meleshkova Tells About the Results of Participation in MITT 2018: The Exhibition Gives Us a Serious Impulse for Further Development

The 25th jubilee Moscow International Travel & Tourism Exhibition MITT 2018 was held on 13–15 March 2018. This is the largest event for the representatives of tourism industry, which unites the most diverse audience from the CIS countries and far abroad. A numerous delegation from 2TM took part in the exhibition. It included employees of the company and representatives from the industry-related faculties of the largest educational institutions in Slovenia, such as the universities of Maribor and Nova Gorica, as well as the educational centre in Velenje.

The chief manager of the company Tatyana Meleshkova tells about the results of participation in the exhibition, the achievements and further plans of 2TM.

– Dear Tatyana. First of all, we would like to know about the practice of 2TM participation in international exhibitions. What place does MITT occupy in this aspect?

2ТМ constantly takes part in various fairs and exhibitions, including international ones. We participate in exhibitions in Serbia, Korea, Ukraine, Slovenia, and the Russian Federation. As for the MITT event, it provided us with ample opportunities to deliver information about education in Slovenia and the activities of the 2TM company. Besides working at the booth in the exhibition pavilion, we held a number of productive meetings with teachers and students. In addition, negotiations were held between the educational institutions of Slovenia and Russia, and concrete results were achieved. I want to note that the 2TM company in general has participated in MITT for the second time. However, this year, the format of our participation has been expanded for the first time, that is, we took part in the exhibition in cooperation with the representatives of Slovenian educational institutions.

– Who were the members of your delegation and why has it this time included representatives of Slovenian universities?

The delegation consisted of the Maribor University Tourism Faculty staff, the representatives of the Educational Centre in Velenje, the representatives of the University in Nova Gorica, the employees of the 2TM company from Ljubljana as well as from the regional offices in Russia and Ukraine.

A number of reasons dictated such a diverse composition of the delegation. The first is the high interest of Slovenian educational institutions in cooperation with educational institutions of the Russian Federation. Secondly, such a composition enhances the level of Slovenian education recognition among university entrants and students of Russian universities. It is very convenient. Students do not need to monitor Internet resources in search of information, do not write e-mails, but just come to the exhibition, ask questions to the representatives of educational institutions and receive answers from the primary source. Another reason for our presence at the MITT exhibition in such an extended format is the interest of educational and travel agencies, primarily regional ones, to the education in Slovenia.

– What did you present to the public in the framework of MITT 2018 and what feedback did you receive from the visitors of your booth?

We presented coloured leaflets and brochures with information about the opportunities and advantages of studying in Slovenia. Including advertising materials with a description of study programmes in different subjects and fields with a focus on professional training programmes in tourism and hospitality. Besides, our booth was equipped with plasma panels, which showed videos with views of Slovenia and sketches of student life. This attracted additional attention of exhibition visitors. They had a desire to stay at our booth and ask various questions.

Many visitors were interested in the topic of studying in Slovenia, because they were already familiar with this country, went there to rest and formed a favourable opinion about it. Therefore, when there suddenly appears information about the real opportunity to live in this country, to receive a popular profession, an European-style diploma with the prospects for further life in Europe, and not to spend a fortune, the majority of people, even those who have not previously thought about the possibility of studying in Europe, start reflecting upon such a turn in their destiny. By the way, this applies not only to students. 2TM also invites representatives of academic staff to improve their skills in the universities of Slovenia. Thus, we are open to multi-vector cooperation.

– As previously reported, during the participation in the MITT exhibition, you held a presentation to students of the Academy of Social Management. What did you talk about? What questions did the students ask?

The students of this Moscow university were not familiar with the opportunities and features of education in Slovenia, although the Academy actively cooperates with European educational institutions in terms of exchange programmes and internships. Therefore, our presentation was aimed at informing students about the opportunities for entering the universities of Slovenia at both Bachelor’s and Master’s degree levels; about study programmes and, of course, about postgraduate prospects. We also told young people about Slovenia, its sights and all the advantages of living in the heart of Europe.

 In their turn, the students actively asked us the substantive questions about the terms of studying, the cost of programmes, the conditions of residence, etc. Therefore, it was clear that they were serious about our offers. Actually, this is quite logical. The majority of our students repeatedly stressed the comparability of prices for education in the universities of the central region of Russia and in the Slovenian universities. At the same time, young people who have chosen study programmes in Slovenian universities automatically receive a residence permit in Europe, have the opportunity not only to develop actively in a professional way, but also to travel freely. Besides, our students learn several languages ​​in the process of studying. After a few years of intensive student life, our graduates receive a European diploma, which opens up to them the prospects for successful employment in virtually any corner of the world.

– If to summarise all the above said, what achievements could be named after the end of MITT 2018?

During the three days of the exhibition, we collected an impressive “baggage” of achievements, for example, the applications from students who are interested in studying in Slovenia; the new contracts concluded with potential partners—educational and tourist agencies, who are interested in cooperation with us. In addition, we received offers from educational institutions in Moscow to hold presentations for their students. We also received an offer for cooperation between 2TM and the Academy of Social Management, which was discussed above.

– You have also mentioned information about the establishment of cooperation between the Russian State University of Tourism and Services Studies and the Faculty of Tourism of the University of Maribor. How will you develop it in practical terms?

The universities, which you mentioned, will conclude a memorandum of cooperation with a detailed record of all their further interactions. In practical terms, it will include the implementation of student internship programmes, exchange programmes, and, as a result, the creation of joint study programmes that meet the requirements of the university curricula in the Russian Federation and Slovenia. The agenda also includes the implementation of joint projects. Besides, of course, a separate topic in terms of interaction between the two universities is a possibility for graduates to receive a double diploma.

– What experience has the 2TM company gained during the exhibition? How will it be used in the future work of both the company itself and educational institutions?

I have to remind that MITT by its nature is a tourism exhibition. The participation in it provided us with an experience of working at non-core exhibitions and promoting our product – study programmes in relevant fields. Equally valuable for us was the experience of holding fruitful business meetings that help to find common ground at different levels and create the foundation for further fruitful cooperation. Undoubtedly, the exhibition gave us a serious impetus for further development.

– What are the 2TM’s nearest plans for participation in such events?

We will continue to take an active part in the activities that contribute to the development of the company and the popularization of knowledge about the opportunities and prospects of studying in Slovenia. We have a lot to tell and offer our clients. By the way, the next international exhibition with the participation of 2TM, “Education and Career” in St. Petersburg, hast started working literally today, which will be held from 23 to 24 March. On this occasion, we invite everyone to visit our booth!

– We wish you success and thank you for the interview!

Thank you!

Interviewer: Diana Kuznetsova