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Angliss alumni shed light on the state of the experience industry


After a tumultuous year, we're excited to see what 2021 has in store for the experience industry. We have so much to look forward to with restrictions being eased - from restaurants being back open to iconic Melbourne events going ahead. 

According to the Australian Industry and Skills Committee data, most hospitality-related occupations are projected to show growth to 2024 with the strongest growth expected for café workers to close to 19% and chefs with over 16%. Employment for Conference and event organisers are projected to grow by 16% to 2024.

To shed some light on the state of the industry, we had a chat with three industry experts - all Angliss alumni! Here's why they’re saying you should keep your chin up for the year to come.

Alumni and their expertise

Daniele James
In 2019, Daniele started working as an Events Coordinator for Perfect Events. With almost seven years of industry experience, Daniele has dipped her toes in many different types of events - from catering for the Grand Prix, managing greenery and floristry for the Australian Open and Portsea Polo to getting involved in production of the Melbourne International Film Festival

Daniele credits the courses she completed at Angliss for giving her the initial training and knowledge she needed to break into the industry. Daniele completed a Diploma of Event Management, the Advanced Diploma of Event Management and before moving into a Bachelor of Event Management, finishing in 2017. You can read more about Daniele, here.

Vimmi Bangari
Before realising her passion for hospitality, Vimmi initially studied Graphic Design with the hope of working in advertising. While studying graphic design, she worked in hospitality and found she loved the industry because of the supportive community. 

After leaving the design industry, Vimmi enrolled at Angliss for hospitality, and during her time here, she was connected with Mantra Hotels. Fast forward 10years later, she's still working in Accor Hotels (which owns Mantra Hotels). In the past decade, Vimmi has worked in food and beverage, reception, reservations, and as a manager.  She has also assisted in opening a new hotel.

Nabil Ansari
Initially, Nabil pursued aviation in Dubai, but he did not enjoy the maths and physics part of his program. During this time, Nabil's mother started a catering company where Nabil would help cook whenever he could. It was meant to be. 

In 2015 he looked into the best food training facility in Melbourne and Angliss came out on top. Nabil applied for our Commercial Cookery course the same year. Nabil currently works as a Sous Chef at Sunda, one of Melbourne's best Southeast Asian eateries. Read more about Nabil here.


What changes did you make in 2020 to survive the pandemic?

It's widely known that the hospitality, foods and hotel industries were highly impacted for most of 2020. Sunda shut their doors and turned their business into a takeaway-only model. "This took a lot of research and development as it's conceptually a casual fine dining restaurant," said Nabil. Many people had to be very flexible with their roles too, with the front of house handling food packaging and their manager taking over delivery.

Nabil was ineligible for JobKeeper and JobSeeker so had to develop a creative way to sustain himself. That's when he started the wildly popular Ansari, a traditional Indian takeaway with exotic ice-cream dessert options. Ansari began in his apartment but soon was made available through The Hotel Windsor.

Daniele at Perfect Events experienced a similar shift. With physical events either cancelled or postponed,  Daniele and her colleagues reached out to their clients to see what they would like to do. Those who opted to shift to for virtual events were guided by Perfect Events and their AV companies who helped produce memorable virtual experiences.

Daniele’s marketing and social media skills helped Perfect Events invest in their own marketing and allowed her to help existing and new clients with their digital marketing needs. 

For Accor Hotels, they tried best to keep as many staff as possible with the JobKeeper scheme. Those who stayed on board had to combine their existing roles with others to close the gap. Front office with housekeeping, maintenance with the front office, and in general, staff were all stepping up to help wherever they can. "Thankfully we have long term residents in our hotel, which helped," said Vimmi.


What was your favourite subject at Angliss?

The most useful subjects can sometimes be unexpected. For Vimmi, the unit on bar work wasn't her favourite. However, it's that same skill that helped secure her first role at Mantra. "My bar work skills came in handy at one of my first big events there. I had to help serve an event for 100 people," said Vimmi. 

Daniele found the subjects under the Advanced Diploma of Event Management practical and helpful. "The core units such as learning how to write a proposal, risk management, staffing and more helped me secure a job in the industry," said Daniele. 

As a cookery alumnus, Nabil enjoyed all of his practical classes. Any time he gets to use the commercial kitchen facilities were valuable time for him. "The first six months of your training sets the tone of the rest of the course. Make the most of it!" said Nabil. 

Nabil would also occasionally flick through his old notes around business planning, which proved helpful as he launched his own business in 2020. 

How do you get your foot in the door? Especially when a lot of job ads want some level of experience.

Applying as a fresh graduate can be tricky as some roles, even when they are entry-level, occasionally still specify some need for experience. All three alumni helped us decode this requirement.

"It's about having a good attitude; how you carry yourself. All the technical elements of the role can be taught and learnt on the job. If you're applying for an entry-level role, this is what we're looking for. Not so much experience but more attitude and customer service skills," said Vimmi. 

"We do gain a lot of experience under the events program at Angliss - and that counts. Yes, you're doing it as part of a course, and it might be volunteer work but you can put it on your resume. You've done it. It's always an advantage to include," said Daniele.

For Nabil, he made the most out of Angliss' Great Chefs event. One night, Ian Curley was the guest chef, and after a night of putting his best foot forward, he approached Ian about working for him in the future. The following week, he applied and started working at one of Chef Curley’s restaurants. "Angliss is the place to meet people and get exposure," said Nabil.   

Are you interested to learn more about our Alumni? Keep an eye on our news section for more success stories.