The 2020 season of the Cape Breton University Community Engagement Program (CEP) is well underway and will operate until October 23. The program began in 2019 with 17 tourism and hospitality operators and more than 80 students. The shuttle service set out to remove employment barriers for students seeking employment by matching them with local businesses across the Island and arranging transportation. This year, CBU students will be transported from Sydney to various Island destinations including Ingonish, Margaree, Dundee and more.
Kevin Hurd, General Manager of Keltic Lodge says the CEP is a valued program for tourist operators. “Rural hospitality operations need sufficient staff to deliver continued quality service to our visitors and guests,” he says. “This is our second year participating in the program. The students have been a terrific addition to our staff.”
This year, the program has been modified to meet the health requirements associated with COVID-19. The University’s Max Bell Health Centre developed a van policy and various procedures that will ensure the health and safety of students. Vans are limited to four student passengers and are equipped with plexiglass barriers. All passengers and drivers are required to wear masks, and complete a screening process before boarding the vehicle.
With safety precautions in place, the program will continue to assist tourism operators with staffing gaps while enabling students to earn an income. The brightly coloured orange and green vans can be spotted on Island roads seven days a week from 7:00am-11:00pm. Have you spotted one yet?
Tourism and hospitality operators in Inverness, Victoria and Richmond Counties are encouraged to contact Kent MacIntyre (firstname.lastname@example.org) or Rahul Luthra (email@example.com) if they are interested in more information about student employees.