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Accor launches the 2024 edition of the global TakeOff! Student Challenge, with the enrichment of an exclusive pilot challenge in China

Accor

Registration for the TakeOff! Students Challenge opens on March 11th, 2024, and will conclude on April 7th, 2024. 

PARIS – Accor launches its highly anticipated 2024 edition of the TakeOff! Student Challenge. Aimed at university students worldwide, this innovation competition continues to evolve, with an additional challenge dedicated to China this year, offering an unparalleled experience with significant value for the younger generation.

As a world-leading hospitality Group, our Talent culture is centered around nurturing and empowering nearly 300,000 employees working within the Accor network across more than 5,500 hotels in 110 countries and spanning 45 brands from ultra-luxury to economy. Our dedication to providing the next generation of Talent with a platform for innovation and growth remains unwavering. The goal of the challenge is to encourage students from diverse backgrounds to embark on a journey of discovery, creativity, and professional development.

This year, Accor invites students to celebrate the 50th anniversary of ibis, our iconic economy brand founded in 1974 in Bordeaux, and one of the largest economy hotel chains in the world. To enhance participants’ preparation and experience, the 2024 edition introduces two exciting initiatives. Firstly, all participating students will be invited to a kickoff session with the competition sponsors – ibis, followed by an interactive Q&A session. This initiative aims to provide participants with comprehensive context and information on the competition’s theme and objectives, ensuring they are well-equipped to embark on their journey with clarity and confidence. Additionally, selected contestants on the design thinking shortlists will benefit from exclusive coaching sessions with external experts and access to a variety of learning resources.

As in previous years, participants can anticipate a multitude of benefits during the competition, including the chance to create connections with peers and industry experts worldwide. They will gain priority access to job opportunities within the Accor Group, facilitated by direct connections with HR teams. Through hands-on experience addressing real-world business challenges, participants will undergo significant professional development, complemented by Accor’s support such as coaching, mentoring, and access to learning resources. Furthermore, winners will enjoy an exclusive trip to Paris, where they will have the unique opportunity to meet Group management members, showcase their projects to the board of sponsors, and partake in a tailored program blending city exploration with professional activities.

A significant addition this year will be the launch of a pilot challenge exclusively in China. As a long-term supporter of the TakeOff! Challenge and a participant country in past editions, China now hosts this exclusive pilot initiative. Aimed at younger Chinese students from diverse backgrounds, particularly those with limited academic experience, it invites them to propose solutions to operational hotel subjects. Students will have the chance to meet the Accor teams, visit the hotels, and explore various job roles. This presents a unique opportunity for early career exploration and the promotion of the hospitality profession on a national scale. The pilot program debuting in China aims to pave the way for future international expansion in the coming years.

Launched 12 years ago, the TakeOff! Student Challenge stands as a symbol of opportunity and innovation within the industry. To date, the competition has engaged more than 6,000 students from various backgrounds across more than 40 countries. With the inaugural pilot launched in China this year, we will continue to evolve and expand the challenge, thereby empowering young Talent.

Steven Daines, Chief Talent & Culture Officer of Accor, said: “We are thrilled to launch the 2024 edition of the TakeOff! Student Challenge and the first pilot competition in China. Accor is committed to nurturing young Talent and driving innovation in the hospitality industry. The TakeOff! Challenge not only serves as a talent incubator for Accor but also as a catalyst to inspire the next generation of hospitality leaders. We are excited to witness the transformative ideas and solutions that participants will bring forward to shape the future of our industry.” 

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Theodore is the Co-Founder and Managing Editor of TravelDailyNews Media Network; his responsibilities include business development and planning for TravelDailyNews long-term opportunities.

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