A successful second year is about to conclude for the ON-IT – Online Internship in Tourism project that has taken important further steps in the definition of a guidance framework for quality virtual work-based learning experiences.
2022 marked a lot of achievements for the ON-IT consortium. In April its 3rd coordination meeting was held, hosted by the University of Macerata. At the meeting the consortium approved the ON-IT Guidelines (the second main output of the project, after the ON-IT report on Experiences of Virtual Internship in Europe issued in 2021) that were published soon after on Zenodo and the project’s website.
Aimed at defining quality criteria, processes and rules for the implementation of effective remote and hybrid curricular internships in higher education, the ON-IT Guidelines are the result of an extensive work on part of the project partners that includes literature review, field research and data analysis, as well as a process of consultation with an expert audience for validation.
Based on the Guidelines, the consortium developed the ON-IT protocol for online and hybrid internships in universities that was presented at the ON-IT webinar on The Challenge of Remote Working in Tourism: Reflections for Virtual Internships in Higher Education, organised by the University of La Laguna on 13 October 2022 in the framework of the annual celebration of the Erasmus Days.
The protocol, which is currently being tested through actual remote or hybrid internships in tourism, covers the three main phases of the internship experience: preparation, implementation and evaluation. For each of them it provides useful tools and procedures for students, company supervisors and university tutors to ensure a proper monitoring and successful outcome of the internship experience.
At the end of the piloting process, the ON-IT consortium will revise the protocol to adjust possible critical points and will publish all related materials and resources to be freely implemented by further universities in many different fields.
At the same time, as part of its learning resources, the ON-IT partners started to develop an online course to support university students in succeeding in their online internships. The course will be provided in all the different languages of the consortium and will include useful learning and self-assessment tools for students to develop crucial skills for effective online internships.
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About the ON-IT project
The ON-IT – Online Internship in Tourism project aims to develop a guidance framework and practical tools to design and implement quality online tourism internships in higher education. By actively engaging all actors involved in the internship experience, the ON-IT project focuses on equipping them with the necessary knowledge and skills to face the challenges of digital transformation in the labour market.
Co-funded by the Erasmus+ project of the European Union, the project gathers 7 partners from all over Europe, committed to explore the challenges and opportunities of remote work-based learning: the University of Macerata (Lead Partner, Italy); the University of La Laguna (Spain); JAMK University of Applied Sciences (Finland); Faculty of Tourism and Hospitality Management of the University of Rijeka (Croatia); Montpellier Business School (France); Mediterranean Universities Union – UNIMED (Italy); and IGCAT (Spain).