Don Bosco Hospitality & Studies

By Annabelle Rodrigues, Head of Department
Annabelle Rodrigues,Head of Department

Annabelle Rodrigues

Head of Department

Annabelle Rodrigues, HoD
Annabelle Rodrigues is an accomplished entrepreneur who successfully established and operated a restaurant in California, USA for approximately a period of two decades. She is a hotel management graduate in IHM, Dadar, worked for a few years in the field of education and hospitality before shifting to America. She returned to her home ground a decade ago and took up the baton to lead DBC-HS in the role of HoD, with finesse, flair and a focus on always pushing the standards of excellence and bringing the best out of the staff and students in all that they pursue. Rodrigues is a voracious reader, avid researcher in the field of hospitality scouting for upcoming trends and innovations with a precise eye for detail.

The quintessential cuisine of Mumbai provides a smorgasbord of cooking styles to the people who immigrate from different part of the world. Indeed, Mumbai ' the commercial capital of India ' has also been the largest hospitality market in the country. While, both international and domestic hotel chains are flooding in Mumbai with new inventory, the scarcity of skilled labour remains the biggest challenges of this industry. Quenching the thirst for quality workforce in the growing hospitality industry in the city is Don Bosco Hospitality Studies (Don Bosco College - Hospitality Studies). Affiliated with the University
of Mumbai, DBC-HS is offering courses like three-year B.Sc. Degree in hospitality studies, One-year short certificate course in Culinary, Food and Beverage Service, Rooms Division Management and Bakery. "We have an official tie-up with Starbucks, an American coffee company to train our students for intensive hospitality review. We have also signed MoUs with other hospitality industry organizations to enhance the skill-sets of our students," says Annabelle Rodrigues, Head of the Department, DBC HS. The institute provides their students with an opportunity to work with well-reputed industries like Trident hotels, The Oberoi, Hyatt hotels and resorts, Vivanta by Taj, ITC hotels and many more.

In the past ten years, the institute has strategized and strived to provide the best professional training to their students through their industry relationship. "Being close to the industry, we understand that they want to recruit the graduates who can work from the day one. We are trying to demystify stress by nurturing the students with the real-life work situations, so that they succeed when entering the industry," claims Rodrigues. As an emerging institute in the hospitality sector, DBC HS has fine-tuned its curriculum with the changing dynamics of the industry.

"Our courses are designed to ensure that the students get hands-on training with advanced equipments to make them highly skilled in the hospitality sector. We also provide them with the same live hotel situation, so that they will understand the heat of the industry," explains Rodrigues. The customized course provided by the institute are making the students to understand the fundamentals levels of food production serving at the multi-level restaurant to the advanced levels of cuisine available in five-star restaurants. As the industry is witnessing a change in the serving
dynamics, the institute is training them to work in stand-alone fine-dine restaurants.

"The shift is now from five-star hotels to stand alone fine-dine restaurants in the city of Mumbai. Now, our focus is no longer limited to five-star hotels where the rate of progression in career could be slower as compared to a standalone Fine-Dining Restaurant," says Rodrigues. DBC-HS has gradually shifted its focus to stand-alone restaurants, which also provide a platform to several hotel management graduate students to get jobs as management trainees and eventually managers in restaurants. The extensive utilization of the expertise available in the industry can also be seen in the classrooms of DBC-HS, where the management has employed faculty members who have been working with various hotel chains before they took up teaching as a major profession.

The institution has a strong pool of faculty members who are experts in the field of hospitality with an experience of more than 15 years. "Our faculty members have worked with the industry before they started their career as a trainer in our organisation. Our team of trainers has ensured that the students are trained in specified techniques like housekeeping and food production training, which are absent in several institutes," opines Rodrigues. The institute also invites guest lectures and conducts workshops to narrow the gap between the industry needs and academics. In addition, the academy has all necessary parameters like state-of-the-art infrastructure, experienced faculty members and meaningful industry tie-ups, now has many ambitious plans in the upcoming years. The institute wants to an emphasis on the integration of assignments to real life industry scenarios and exposure to new trends in the culinary world.