Graduate Story – Atis (Shane) Suksingha

Thai Hospitality Management graduate Atis (Shane) Suksingha, has always had a strong interest in business management and travel, as such a career in hospitality management was a good fit for him.

He chose QRC due to it’s location in NZ’s tourism capital but more importantly the extensive networks the College has with leading tourism and hospitality management companies.

Using his previous work experience of working in ski fields in Japan he joined NZSki as rental assistance up The Remarkable and Coronet Peak for his fully paid internship.

Upon graduation Shane headed straight to the University of Otago where he is in his first year of a Bachelor of Commerce, majoring in International Business.

He feels the biggest difference between QRC and university life is that at Otago you have to have a greater amount of self-discipline. “No attendance is taken in lectures and it would be easy to take the occasional class off” he says.

Economics is his favourite subjects as it is the study of choice and the allocation of resources, key to any successful business.

After completing his degree he plans to get some more work experience then head back to Thailand before completing his masters.

The best piece of advice he has ever had was from his parents:


“It doesn’t matter what job you get or how much you are making, as long as you’re truly interested in it, getting valuable experience, and being the best version of yourself. That’s the key to happiness and success”


Read more about Shane’s journey below.


On the Couch with Atis (Shane) Suksingha


Q: Why did you choose to follow a career in tourism/hospitality?

A: I chose to study Hospitality and tourism because I see hospitality as the fundamental to any business operation, not only for the customer but your employees as well. Tourism is also a huge sector for nearly every business; understanding how to satisfy this sector can benefit your business in many ways.


Q: Why did you choose QRC?

A: I chose QRC because of its integration within the local hospitality and tourism industry. QRC work closely with many operators in New Zealand, especially Queenstown. You can find QRC’s alumni or interns in nearly every hospitality-related business in Queenstown. Furthermore, Queenstown is a growing tourist destination that evolves day by day; the industry welcomes innovation and is quite adaptive to any situation (as shown during Covid-19). Therefore, in my opinion, QRC is the place to go to get first-hand experience in this ever-growing industry.


Q: Where did you undertake your internship?

A: I did my internship with NZSki as rental assistance up The Remarkables and Coronet Peak; it was an amazing experience, getting to head up the mountains every day and ski while there’s not a lot of customers around. I did apply for a role in the Food & beverage department. Still, since I had previous experience working in the ski field in Japan, NZSki recommended joining the rental department. While working, I received an opportunity to train as a ski instructor and received the qualification by the end of my internship


Q: Was it difficult to find this job?

A: Although I went on my internship at the start of the first lockdown, there was no lack of position available after lockdown. There were many positions available in the hospitality sector after lockdown, and I was able to start my role by the end of the first week after lockdown.


Q: What was the biggest “takeaway” from your internship experience?

A: The whole experience was amazing; I enjoyed every day up the mountains. The biggest takeaway would be that there is always up and down to each day; some moments are great, some are not, but at the end when you look back to the day before, you can always find the motivation to keep going. It can sometimes be tiring, but looking back at it now, I will definitely do it again if possible.


Q: What degree are you studying and where?

A: I’m currently studying Bachelor of Commerce, majoring in International Business at the University of Otago


Q: How does university life differ from QRC?

A: The main difference is the amount of self-discipline required. Since there is no attendance and every lecture can be replayed online, you will have to motivate yourself to go to class and put in enough time to understand the materials covered in class. Since QRC’s contents covered the first year of university quite well, the main goal is to make sure you fully understand the content and are able to evaluate the concept in different contexts.


Q: How well prepared did you feel moving from QRC to Otago?

A: The contents taught at QRC connects to first-year Bcom perfectly. Subjects such as economics, accounting, and hospitality management teach you most of the fundamentals you need for your first year in Bcom. Therefore, I was quite confident moving from QRC to Otago, and after half a semester, I’m glad I went to QRC.


Q: What is your favourite subject so far at Uni and why?

A: Economics is one of my favourites since QRC. The subject establishes the logic behind every business and its customers, explaining the cause and effect of what you see in your day to day life.


Q: What are your plans for the future?

A: After getting my bachelor’s degree, I plan to work for a business back home in Thailand to get some work experience before pursuing my master’s degree.


Q: What’s the best advice you were ever given? Who was it from?

A: “It doesn’t matter what job you get or how much you are making, as long as you’re truly interested in it, getting valuable experience, and being the best version of yourself” an advice from my parents and those I hold close to me.


Q: What advice would you give to someone thinking of continuing their studies at Otago Uni?

A: Although the first year of uni covers some of the things you learnt about at QRC, pay attention to the content because the course will explore the concept deeper than the content covered at QRC. Stay open-minded and try out different things.

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