2020 Global Youth Economic Opportunities Summit Virtual Series


Thursday, September 24, 2020
9:00–11:00am EDT

Online event

Session: The reemergence of the travel and tourism sector – why youth matter

In conjunction with the 2020 Global Youth Economic Opportunity Summit, FHI 360 and co-sponsor, the Adventure Travel and Trade Association, will explore youth economic opportunity in the travel and tourism sector from the perspective of professional development, economic growth and key market segments. The session will be conducted virtually.

According to the International Labour Organization, approximately 68 million youth around the world are unemployed at present, and an additional 41 million youth will enter the workforce by 2030, challenging economies to absorb a growing young workforce. The travel and tourism industry, which provides 1 in 10 jobs globally according to the World Travel and Tourism Council, presents economic opportunity for youth.

According to multiple studies, however, youth perceive the sector as providing only entry-level, short-term employment rather than long-term professional careers. Although the tourism sector has suffered during the pandemic, it is uniquely positioned to recover rapidly and be a major driver of youth employment and economic recovery. Education, sensitization and awareness building on opportunities in the sector will support poverty alleviation and livelihoods development for youth around the globe.

The two-hour interactive session will feature lightning talks with industry experts focused on critical issues for youth engagement and explore the COVID-19 context for travel and tourism. The opening half will address the broad topics of skills development and youth economic opportunities in the industry, implementation of training models, professional growth and job security. The second half will focus on tourism in the post-COVID-19 world, adventure travel, and digital/virtual tourism. In addition, a special Voices from the Field segment will present youth currently engaged in the industry talking about their experiences. Participants will be encouraged to engage through online discussion boards during the session.

Speakers and facilitators include:

  • Dr. Taleb Rifai, former Secretary-General, World Tourism Organization (UNWTO)
  • Natasha Martin, Good Tourism
  • Jessica Shultz, Hyatt Hotels Corporation
  • Aziz Abu Sarah, Mejdi Tours and National Geographic Society
  • Sarah Sladen, Making Cents International
  • Gustavo Timo, Adventure Travel and Trade Association
  • Nick Wedeman, FHI 360
  • Sherry Youssef, FHI 360
  • Niki Zoli, formerly Marriott International

Registration is required and event space is limited.

Special sponsor session from:

Media Inquiries

For any questions about the event, reach out to our FHI 360 media contact.
Allison Bozniak
Associate Director, Corporate and Regional Communications
Photo credit: Hinterhaus Productions/Getty Images