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CQTN...Hospitality Works for Northeast Tennessee

On Thursday, October 27, 2022, over 700 high school juniors and seniors representing 17 high schools from around the region, took part in the first ever, CareerQuestTN…Hospitality Works event at the MeadowView Conference Resort & Convention Center in Kingsport.

Students had both hands on experiences and panel discussions with regional industry leaders in hospitality and tourism. A sector which has proven to be one of the most vital to our state and region. CareerQuestTN…Hospitality Works was designed to educate students about careers right here in Northeast Tennessee.

The main areas of focus included food/accommodations, events/marketing, recreation and entertainment. During lunch students learned successful interviewing tips heard from , Kevin Triplett, former tourism commissioner for the State of Tennessee. Lottie Ryans, who spearheaded this effort through the FTDD shared her thoughts on Hospitality Works, “we are pleased to see our industry leaders and our schools embrace the opportunity. It is through career exploration such as CareerQuestTN that students can make informed decisions about their their post-secondary and career choices or even discover what they are not interested in pursuing” In addition to CareerQuestTN, the FTDD provides career exploration opportunities for area college students via internships. Carrie Patrick, a Workforce Intern with the District assisted with planning Hospitality Works added that "on my first day on the job, I was introduced to CareerQuestTN…Hospitality Works. Ever since, I have seen this project come together and watched as community leaders supported this effort.”

The event would not be possible without the support of companies and organizations that make the tourism industry in the region so strong, they include:

Food and Accommodations: - Chick Fil A – Johnson City Crossing - Compass Healthcare - MeadowView Marriott Conference Resort & Convention Center - The Kitchen at Grace Meadows - Encore Event Management and Marketing - Greene Co Partnership - Tiebreakers - Northeast TN Tourism Association - Visit Johnson City - Meet the Mountains Festival - Visit Kingsport - Visit Jonesborough - Tri Cities Airport Recreation and Entertainment - ETSU Martin Center for the Arts - ETSU Campus Recreation - ETSU Sport and Recreation Management - USA Raft - Doe River Gorge - Southern Appalachian Wilderness Stewards - YMCA Kingsport - The Kitchen at Grace Meadows - Bays Mountain - Roan Mountain

CareerQuestTN is a program of the First Tennessee Development District representing career exploration for students throughout the region. The flagship event, CareerQuestTN will be held in April at ETSU and CareerQuest TN...It’s All About Busine$$ will again be held at Northeast State Community College in March.

For additional information on CareerQuest Events, please contact Lottie Ryans at

For additional information on this or other news from the First Tennessee Development District, please contact Mark Stevans at

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