Episode 144

Texas Travel and Tourism CollegeJennifer Roush and Erika Boyd

About Our Guest

Jennifer Roush and Erika Boyd

This week on the Destination Marketing Podcast, Adam takes the show on the road to the Texas Travel and Tourism College. Listen to his conversation with Jennifer Roush, Senior Director of Operations and Events at Texas Travel Alliance, and Erika Boyd, Interim President & CEO at Texas Travel Alliance. Topics include the importance of furthering education in the travel and tourism industry, as well as the history and purpose of the Texas Travel and Tourism College.

"Most people in the industry are willing to help each other no matter what . . . because the rising tide lifts all boats. Travel and tourism have a lift across the economy and if we're helping each other in different communities, then we're all going to be stronger for it." -Erika Boyd

Episode Highlights

  • Name: Adam Stoker
  • Position: Co-founder and CEO of Relic
  • Favorite Destination: Fiji
  • Dream Destination: New Zealand
  • Name: Jennifer Roush
  • Position: Sr. Director of Operations and Events at Texas Travel Alliance
  • Favorite Destination: Norway
  • Dream Destination: Greece
  • Name: Erika Boyd
  • Position: President & CEO at Texas Travel Alliance
  • Favorite Destination: Portugal, Morocco and Greece
  • Dream Destination: Italy and Egypt

“Texas Travel and Tourism College” – Show Notes and Highlights

Show Highlights:

  • Travel and Tourism College has a three-year professional development certification program (CTE) led by different leaders in the industry.
  • Topics range from:
    1.     Strategic Planning
    2.     Crisis Management
    3.     Advocacy
    4.     Leadership development
    5.     Digital Marketing
  • Texas Travel Alliance is the leading advocate for the industry making sure that state tourism legislation, promotion and funding is in place.

Trends now seen in travel and tourism:

    1.     Short term rentals
    2.     Leisure travel

 

  • Erika advises not to be afraid to try something new even if you think you are not quite there. Not testing it or giving it a chance to succeed or to fail is not progress at all.
  • Jennifer believes that if people continue to be open to sharing and come together during a crisis, somebody out there might have an idea of how to help whatever the situation might be.

 

Resources Mentioned in the Podcast: 

Episode Transcript

Erika Boyd:               [00:00:00] Most people in the industry are willing to help each other no matter what and to share ideas and to collaborate and to make sure that we’re all successful because the rising tide lifts all boats. Travel and tourism do have a lift across the economy and if we’re helping each other in different communities, then we’re all going to be stronger for it.

 

Adam Stoker:            [00:00:20] Hello everyone and welcome to another episode of the Destination Marketing Podcast. I’m your host, Adam Stoker and we are back on the road. We’re in College Station, Texas at the Texas Travel Alliance Travel and Tourism College and I am with Jennifer Roush and Erika Boyd and we are really excited for this episode. So Jennifer and Erika, welcome to the show.

 

Jennifer Roush:         Thanks for having us.

 

Adam Stoker:            [00:00:45] Who talks when, right? I’ll tell you guys. I’ll go with each of you from here on out. But let’s start with you, Jennifer. We want to first have you introduce yourself and your title and then I’ll have some icebreaker questions for both of you once we’ve done introductions here.

 

Jennifer Roush:         [00:01:02] Alright, sounds good. So, Jennifer Roush, I’m with the Senior Director of Operations and Events for the Texas Travel Alliance. Have been with the association for about 20 years now.

 

Adam Stoker:            [00:01:12] Is that all? 20 years?

 

Jennifer Roush:         [00:01:14] Oh. That’s it. A short time frame, huh?

 

Adam Stoker:            [00:01:17] How cool, how cool it would be with the same organization and watch it grow for so long.

 

Jennifer Roush:         [00:01:19] It is. Such an awesome industry.

 

Adam Stoker:            [00:01:22] Great. Alright, Erika, how about you?

 

Erika Boyd:               [00:01:24] Well, hi, thanks for having us here today. It’s exciting to be with you all and to talk travel and tourism. I’m Erika Boyd, Texas Travel Alliance. I’m the Interim President and CEO and we are just thrilled to be hosting in-person events again and get to do things like this.

 

Adam Stoker:            [00:01:41] Isn’t it great? Great to be in person.

 

Jennifer Roush:         [00:01:42] Yeah, so great.

 

Adam Stoker:            [00:01:43] Awesome. Well, thanks to both of you for joining us. We’ve got some icebreaker questions. I want each of you to answer. We’re going to go Erika first this time, Jennifer second and then we’ll come back around in the second question. So Erika, what is your dream destination? If you could go anywhere in the world, where would it be?

 

Erika Boyd:               [00:02:00] Oh gosh! Put me on the spot. I don’t know if I can pick one place but a couple of destinations that I would love to go to. One, I want to see Italy. I want to see the Sistine Chapel and I would love to see the Pyramids in Egypt.

 

Adam Stoker:            [00:02:20] So in our bucket list contest, so far on the show, Italy is winning for sure.

 

Erika Boyd:               [00:02:25] Nice, nice.

 

Adam Stoker:            [00:02:27] That is a great and popular answer. I should let all our listeners know too, we are at the Junction Market and Cafe inside of the Texas A&M Conference Center and Hotel. And there’s some music in the background from the cafe. And so if you’re hearing that just want to make sure that we let you know kind of where we are. It’s a great, great resort or hotel and so we’re really excited to be here. Now Jennifer, your dream destination.

 

Jennifer Roush:         [00:02:56] Gosh same thing. There are so many places to go. I would say Greece is one place. I would love to visit there.

 

Adam Stoker:            [00:03:04] You guys need to go together and just hit those.

 

Erika Boyd:               [00:03:06] I’ve been to Greece.

 

Jennifer Roush:         [00:03:07] She’s there done it. Yes, I need to go there and then just places like Australia and Africa are still on my list and Japan. So yeah lots of places still to go.

 

Adam Stoker:            [00:03:21] Okay. Australia, Africa and Japan and Greece.

 

Jennifer Roush:         [00:03:23] Yes.

 

Adam Stoker:            [00:03:25] We’re going to make you choose. Which ones first? What’s the highest priority?

 

Jennifer Roush:         [00:03:29] Oh gosh let’s see. We’ll say Greece.

 

Adam Stoker:            [00:03:32] Greece. Okay so when Erika said Italy, she said Sistine Chapel, I knew exactly what kind of her priority was there. What’s yours? What’s the first thing you’re going to see in Greece?

 

Jennifer Roush:         [00:03:41] I just love the scenic, the scenery. So that’s kind of where I kind of picked my locations and things. It’s just I find the nature aspect and things like that and then just kind of being in the culture just learning about them. So that’s kind of what it is for me.

 

Adam Stoker:            [00:03:56] Okay. Beautiful vistas. Alright. Good.

 

Erika Boyd:               [00:03:59] Beautiful beaches. Yeah.

 

Adam Stoker:            [00:04:02] That’s right.

 

Erika Boyd:               [00:04:03] Islands are great.

 

Jennifer Roush:         [00:04:04] Yeah.

 

Adam Stoker:            [00:04:05] So you’re going to be her tour guide, Erika I think is the way we do this. You build her itinerary.

 

Erika Boyd:               [00:04:10] Dial back in my memory all those years ago. Yeah.

 

Adam Stoker:            [00:04:14] Nice. Well, we might be getting to this but tell me about each of your favorite trip you’ve ever been on. We’ll stick with Jennifer to start us off.

                                                       

Jennifer Roush:         [00:04:22] Alright. Well my recent, the last one I did was in Norway. So we took a cruise.

 

Adam Stoker:            [00:04:26] You went to Norway?

 

Jennifer Roush:         [00:04:28] Yes, I know some people that’s like off the wall for them, but I don’t know something about the nature aspect again. We did a lot of hiking in various places. The people are wonderful, the food, it was just amazing. I just loved it and seeing the Fjord was oh my gosh, nothing beats that. I can’t tell you how impressive it was.

 

Adam Stoker:            [00:04:48] You know, it’s funny. I rarely hear Norway on someone’s bucket list, but the people that have been there just rave about it. It comes up on favorite place you’ve ever been so many times.

 

Jennifer Roush:         [00:04:59] I highly recommend it. Absolutely.

 

Adam Stoker:            [00:05:00] Awesome. Who’d you go with?

 

Jennifer Roush:         [00:05:01] I went with a friend.

 

Adam Stoker:            [00:05:03] Okay. Great.

 

Jennifer Roush:         [00:05:04] We had a great time.

 

Adam Stoker:            [00:05:05] Sounds like a great time. How about you, Erika?

 

Erika Boyd:               [00:05:08] Well I got to take a truly once-in-a-lifetime trip when I was in high school. I had a geography teacher who did a lot of work with National Geographic and she got picked to go on a trip that they used to do in conjunction with the Navy and with NOA and so all these different teachers pick students. And so it was like kids from all around the US and we got to go to Portugal, Morocco and Greece.

 

Adam Stoker:            [00:05:38] Oh my gosh.

 

Erika Boyd:               [00:05:39] And we got to spend time on a Navy research ship through the Strait of Gibraltar and across the Mediterranean and kind of learning about all the things that they do at sea and seeing different cultures and just a fantastic trip. Fantastic. And this was pre 9-11. So at the time, I thought I wanted to go to the Air Force Academy. And so my teacher had mentioned that to the flight attendant and she said, “Oh well come with me, and so I got to go into the cabin and sit in like the little fold out seat they have.

 

Adam Stoker:            [00:06:13] The jump seat?

 

Erika Boyd:               [00:06:14] Yeah, the jump seat while they landed coming into Lisbon and it was just so cool because you don’t ever get to see that and you have your tiny window in the plane. But to see like everything that they see and everything that they’re doing was incredible.

 

Adam Stoker:            [00:06:28] See, when you’re a mediocre student like I was, you don’t get nominated for those types of trips.

 

Erika Boyd:               [00:06:34] Perhaps not. It was fantastic though and that’s the kind of travel that opens up your eyes to the rest of the world and like the realm of possibilities that you can experience outside of your own little bubble.

 

Adam Stoker:            [00:06:53] What an amazing trip to take kind of in your formative years as you’re growing up to see the world. You probably get to see it through a little bit different lens than the rest of us who didn’t have that experience.

 

Erika Boyd:               [00:07:04] Yeah, yeah, there’s so much more to experience out there and yeah, it’s great.

 

Adam Stoker:            [00:07:09] Very cool. All right, well Erika we’re going to stick with you. Give us a little bit about your background and how you ended up where you are today.

 

Erika Boyd:               [00:07:17] Okay. well I have worked in a non-profit association, leadership management for quite a long time and I’ve done communications and advocacy, worked a lot with boards, of directors, and I have done everything from working with underprivileged children and the foster care system to law enforcement and then working with Texas Travel Alliance and formerly TTIA Travel Industry Association when I started. And for me, my first job ever was really in the industry. I grew up in New Braunfels, Texas, born and raised. So when you grow up in a town that has a lot of travel and tourism that is really steeped in the community, you can’t help but do things like work at Schlitterbahn.

 

So I was a lifeguard at Schlitterbahn. I worked for a river outfitter. Lots of people to –

 

Adam Stoker:            [00:08:21] Is Schillerbahn the park with that giant waterside where you jump up in the air before you land in the water?

 

Erika Boyd:               [00:08:30] Well you can, I don’t know if they would recommend you do that because you could probably get hurt. But yes, there are so many fantastic rides at Schlitterbahn and family-friendly. Not to be a sales pitch for Schlitterbahn but it is a fantastic resort. It’s super family-friendly.

 

Adam Stoker:            [00:08:43] I feel like I’ve seen some YouTube videos of people breaking the rules.

 

Erika Boyd:               [00:08:47] Probably, probably. Yeah, but when you grow up in that community and it’s all around you, you can’t help it experience it and understand and appreciate the value travel and tourism have on a community.

 

Adam Stoker:            [00:09:03] Very cool. Alright. And today you’re the Interim President and CEO of the Texas Travel Alliance?

 

Erika Boyd:               [00:09:10] Yes.

 

Adam Stoker:            [00:09:11] Okay, Alright. And you’ve been doing that for how long?

 

Erika Boyd:               [00:09:14] Six months. So I started this role in January and then we started our legislative session, so here in Texas, our legislature meets every other year for about six months and it’s a mad dash from beginning to end to get all the business done for the state. It has been quite a whirlwind. It’s been quite fun.

 

Adam Stoker:            [00:09:36] Great, alright, and Jennifer, let’s learn a little bit more about you and your background and how you ended up in your position. Obviously, we know you’ve been at the Texas Travel Alliance for 20 years. How did you get there?

 

Jennifer Roush:         [00:09:48] Sure, so I started out in my twenties and then I came on board as the Executive Assistant to the President and CEO. Just as opportunities came up, I’m always been one who wants to learn as much as possible and if I can help someone with their job, their role with the association, I was always on board to learn more. Just let me just take it all in being a 20 year old, so young and from there I just kind of grew up, got added titles, switching roles and here I am. I’ve been doing the events since 2005. So yeah.

 

Adam Stoker:            [00:10:24] Great. So I think what’s interesting about that is this last year wasn’t your first industry crisis for either of you that you’ve seen throughout your career. It probably helped you a little bit in figuring out what to do over the last 12 to 16 months.

 

Jennifer Roush:         [00:10:38] It has, yeah. My first big conference of attending with what we were previously called Texas Travel Industry Associations, they had a summit and that was 9-11. So our conference was all right on top of that and it happened. So yeah, we went through that. That was just crazy. So I’ve learned a lot though of how to deal and help our members who are in that situation, how we can. We’ve gone through a couple of hurricane situations as well, so trying to figure out, okay, hold off on the event, cancel, still hold it at a future time frame. So yeah. And then the pandemic came. So we’ve had a few things to kind of work through.

 

Adam Stoker:            [00:11:18] Yeah. Okay. All right. Well, you know what? Who better to be in a leadership role in the industry here than both of you who have seen as much as you have. Let’s talk about Travel and Tourism College and that’s one of the main reasons that I wanted to chat with both of you today because I do feel like this is the type of event that every state should be doing. The educational aspect from the Industry Association or what’s now The Travel Alliance, I think that is such a critical role that you play in the industry. So let’s talk about what it is and the value that it brings to its members.

 

Jennifer Roush:         [00:11:55] Sure. So Travel and Tourism College. This is our 11th one. Our 11th year to do this program. It is actually not Texas-specific. We have also had people from you know, Florida, Illinois, Oklahoma, Kansas. So this is a program that is open to any state actually. So I highly recommend taking a look at our program. There’s interest. This is a certification program, so it is a three-year commitment. It’s a week-long of intensive learning programming from different professors who are leaders in the industry. Sometimes college professors themselves, topics range from innovation, trends, marketing kind of what’s new and what you need to know. Gosh.

 

Erika Boyd:               [00:12:43] Strategic planning.

 

Jennifer Roush:         [00:12:45] Yeah, please.

 

Erika Boyd:               [00:12:46] Crisis management, advocacy.

 

Jennifer Roush:         [00:12:48] Leadership.

 

Erika Boyd:               [00:12:49] Yeah, leadership development.

 

Adam Stoker:            [00:12:50] It’s like the full gamut here.

 

Jennifer Roush:         [00:12:52] Exactly. Anything you can think of. Digital marketing, we’re talking to have a TikTok session for the first time, so I really there’s some opportunities there to learn so, and really, and it’s all levels, it’s not just people first in the industry coming in, it is any level that you were at, you will learn something. Then not only with just the content, but there is also a lot of within the networking themselves, there’s a lot of relationship-building during this whole week and we sent just the friendships that have come out of this and how much people have learned from each other. It’s just amazing.

 

Erika Boyd:               [00:13:27] The discussions had in the classroom really lead to not only deeper relationships, but problem-solving and idea development from what others have done well or, learned from and, so it’s a great way to enhance and expand what you do in your own community or your own organization, from learning what others are doing and what they’ve done well or experiences that they had great takeaways from.

 

Adam Stoker:            [00:14:04] Great. I’ve already learned something that I didn’t know I was going to learn in this conversation and that’s that this isn’t just Texas Travel and Tourism College. You mentioned a few of the states that have come down. I mean, it almost feels like every state should be looking at taking part in this type of educational process.

 

Jennifer Roush:         [00:14:27] Absolutely, no, definitely. In each year, we just see more and more come from different out of state. It’s still a small number, it’s mostly Texas, but the word is getting out some, so which is great. And we’ll be doing another reach out for next year as well.

 

Adam Stoker:            [00:14:44] Okay. And what’s the certification that you get at the end of the process? What’s it called?

 

Erika Boyd:               [00:14:48] Sure. The certification is Certified Tourism Executives, CTE. So yeah, that’s the certification. Before they get that, once they’ve complete their three years, they do have to go through a capstone project. So a little added benefit, it’s a nice way for them to contribute to their communities in that way because we’ve seen capstones on crisis management plans, new marketing plans, we’ve seen all kinds of stuff, different packaging deals within their communities, in tractions in the hotels and things like that. So it’s great what comes out of it from an employer standpoint as well.

 

Adam Stoker:            [00:15:24] Oh fantastic. Anything you want to add there, Erika?

 

Erika Boyd:               [00:15:28] Yeah. You know, I think Jennifer covered it well. So the three years of course work you build upon what you’re learning the first year, your second year, your third year and then you get to the capstone and then you really can develop something that you can put into practice in your real-world work life.

 

Adam Stoker:            [00:15:50] So it’s not just hypothetical, you’re working on your destination when you’re here.

 

Erika Boyd:               [00:15:54] Right.

 

Jennifer Roush:         [00:15:55] Absolutely, I’ve heard some success stories, so it’s been great.

 

Adam Stoker:            [00:15:58] So clearly there’s a real benefit to employers here that they can send their people and they can get almost years of tourism experience just by learning from the mistakes of maybe other people that have come before or learning some of the principles that it takes years to learn. What kind of feedback are you hearing from the employers who send their people to complete these programs?

 

Jennifer Roush:         [00:16:22] You know, we’ve had some that came back one person, in particular, learned so much related to how to enhance and make their social media efforts better that this person went back to the employer, I think they attended only two years so far at that time. They got promoted right away by showing them what they learned and everything related to that. I mean that was great. So that was very flattering to hear. But we do see that here and there that people are getting promoted. So it’s great professional development opportunity by coming here. Employers seem to be happy. We see them sending people every time somebody finishes the program, they’re sending more. So that’s just awesome.

 

Adam Stoker:            [00:17:07] Great. Great. Well, obviously the Texas Travel Alliance is more than just Travel and Tourism College. So Erika, do you want to share with us a little bit about all of the different things that the Texas Travel Alliance is involved in?

 

Erika Boyd:               [00:17:20] Sure I would love to. So we are the voice for the industry. We are the leading advocate for the industry, particularly as related to working with the legislature and advocating on behalf of the industry for favorable legislation, making sure that state tourism promotion funding is in place, making sure that our legislation around how hotel occupancy tax dollars are spent is in line with what is allowable and not going beyond those bounds so that we are protecting all of the organizations who truly create the experience and bring visitors in and generate the economic revenues that drive our communities

 

Adam Stoker:            [00:18:08] Great. Yeah, I’m on the Utah Tourism Industry Association Board and my eyes were really opened when I joined that board to all of the work that happens behind the scenes so that destinations and related businesses in the tourism economy can operate really smoothly because the advocacy work is being done, right? So I think that’s really, really great that you guys are doing what you do. You also have kind of a bird’s eye view of the industry, right? You can kind of see holistically what’s going on and I’ll say in Texas travel and tourism, I’m sure you’re seeing beyond here and there.

 

But for the sake of our conversation, we’ll say Texas travel and tourism, what trends are you seeing in the industry right now? What are the main advocacy points that people are asking you to focus on and in a post-COVID world, what are the hot buttons? And we’re not completely post-COVID yet, I know that. But as tourism starts to come back, what are the hot buttons that you’re seeing from your destinations that you advocate for?

 

Erika Boyd:               [00:19:12] Lots to unpack in that question.

 

Adam Stoker:            [00:19:14] I know, right? It’s only a 30-minute question.

 

Erika Boyd:               [00:19:18] So I’ll answer that in five. So let me go back to the beginning of your question and pull apart some of those pieces. So across the industry, there are some issues that are perennial issues. So making sure that funding is in place is always an important issue.

 

Adam Stoker:            [00:19:38] And protected, right? From all the hands trying to lit away.

 

Erika Boyd:               [00:19:40] And protected. Absolutely. Right. And then there are emerging trends in the industry. Five, ten years ago, short-term rentals were not what they are in the market today. And so managing short term rentals, regulating short term rentals, making sure that our destinations know where the short term rentals are and that they are paying occupancy tax is a big issue and it has been an evolving one that we foresee the legislature needing to address further and the way that they’re regulated across varying communities having some standards for the industry, as well as making sure that as our legislature and our city struggle with how to fund varying things that are funding sources do not become the funding source for everything.

 

And, one thing that we’ve seen in this kind of post-COVID era is that many of our destinations were the public information officer for their community. Some because they were the only ones who could do it and some because they stepped into the role and gladly said, we’re going to help and we’re going to make sure the community knows where resources are, how we’re going to get through this and really became the voice for the community to help get them through this crisis. And so that’s a really important role that we can continue to play and to really be a trusted resource in all of our communities.

 

As we are moving past COVID, hopefully, fingers crossed where we’re definitely getting there, we are seeing leisure travel truly leading the way out of this economic downturn that has been COVID, and it is slowly pulling the business travel as well. It’s coming, it is coming and people are eager to be back together in person. We see that with the in-person events that we have started having this year. Our last event was our Unity Dinner Event in April of 2021 was the first time that many people had been together in over a year. There is such just like excitement and enthusiasm to be together. It was palpable to feel that in the room.

 

So we know that business travel and conferences, and meetings and events are coming back. It’s just a little slower than the leisure travel, but I have to say the leisure travel, the numbers that our communities are reporting, they are gangbusters. It is 2019 plus, plus, plus, and 2019 was a great year. So there’s lots of hope and optimism in the industry and the future is definitely bright.

 

Adam Stoker:            [00:22:35] Yeah, crisis is always a hard time right to be in the industry and to watch your friends struggle. Some of them changed jobs because they have to, some of them changed jobs without a choice of their own. But, but as you go through that the people that either pushed through maybe they’re in a new role or whatever, the innovation and change that comes out of a crisis like this in a lot of cases it’s really, really fun to see and to see some of the recovery that’s taking place right now, you talk about the 2019 plus, plus numbers that we’re seeing. I mean, a lot of markets all over the country, especially in the States that are open are feeling that.

 

What type of innovation have you seen in the industry that, that’s impressed you from maybe some of the destinations within the state?

 

Jennifer Roush:         [00:23:25] So when I saw during the pandemic, was the San Antonio Zoo and they created kind of a dry through to her. So to me, I just thought that was fascinating. I love zoos and kids do and families, it’s a family thing to do. So it was really, I thought very innovative and kept people give them the opportunity to go somewhere, you know, but you’re safe on your own vehicle. So to me, I thought that was fascinating. That is one thing that I saw.

 

Erika Boyd:               [00:23:54] Yeah.

 

Adam Stoker:            [00:23:55] I love that, that’s great. So, Erika, we talked about meeting in person and how great it’s been to meet in person again. You guys, you did the Unity Dinner, which is great. You’ve got Travel and Tourism College, which is great to see everybody in person. The next thing is probably a conference. Are you guys doing a conference this year?

 

Erika Boyd:               [00:24:14] We are, we have the Texas Travel Summit coming up in September and Amarillo. We are looking forward to being there and having all of our travel and tourism, friends and partners and allies, everybody coming to Amarillo. They are very excited for us to come to Amarillo and to showcase the destination and the community and all that they have to offer. Yeah, so it’s going to be a fun week September 13 –

 

Jennifer Roush:         [00:24:42] 13 through 15.

 

Adam Stoker:            [00:24:45] Well that’s exciting that you’ve got your conference coming up in September. If people want to attend, what do they need to do, where do they need to go?

 

Jennifer Roush:         [00:24:52] Absolutely. So our website is texastravelalliance.org. If they go there we have an events tab and we’ve got all of our events listed there and I just go to Texas Travel Summit. Registration is up and running. So we’d love to have some people start signing up and we will add information as it comes available. So working on our keynote speakers right now. At the moment we’ve got a couple in the works so we’ll be posting information soon on that.

 

Adam Stoker:            [00:25:19] Exciting. Okay I guess as a parting thought I’d love for each of you maybe to give me, what do you feel like is either something you learned or maybe the best piece of advice that you could give destinations right now as they continue to move forward into 2021?

 

Erika Boyd:               [00:25:38] Ooh that’s a great question. I would say I think this can apply to pandemics or not. Don’t be afraid to try something. Even if you think we’re not quite there, it’s not quite fully fleshed out. But if you don’t test it and you don’t give it a chance to succeed or fail and be able to learn from it, then you’re not making any progress. You’re not moving forward. So don’t be afraid to try something new.

 

Adam Stoker:            [00:26:05] Yes. Take the risk.

 

Erika Boyd:               [00:26:07] Yeah, and we’re still close enough to COVID that you could potentially say, “Oh it’s COVID blame it on COVID.”

 

Adam Stoker:            [00:26:15] So you just gave everybody the out. If you need an out after taking a risk.

 

Erika Boyd:               [00:26:19] Unless I say unless it’s because of COVID, then it actually might be because of COVID. Okay?

 

Adam Stoker:            [00:26:26] Everybody blame Erika if you use that excuse and it doesn’t work. Okay, Jennifer. How about you?

 

Jennifer Roush:         [00:26:31] Oh gosh! Throughout this, I have seen so many people come together with this situation and I say just keep continuing. If you’ve got some kind of issue, I mean this injury is just so friendly and open to sharing what they’re going through. They could be going through the same thing. Somebody out there might have an idea of how to help whatever that situation might be. So I say just continue that. I think I’ve seen a lot more of that during the pandemic, we’ve heard, you got to come together.

 

Adam Stoker:            [00:27:05] I think collaboration has saved a lot of people from making mistakes that they would have otherwise made.

 

Jennifer Roush:         [00:27:11] Absolutely.

 

Adam Stoker:            [00:27:12] We found, even in our business it’s not a destination, it’s a private business, right? But collaboration has really been the name of the game for us to get us through the pandemic as well.

 

Erika Boyd:               [00:27:23] Yeah, and that’s certainly something that is special about travel and tourism in Texas is that most people in the industry are willing to help each other no matter what, and to share ideas and to collaborate and to make sure that we’re all successful because I like to say the rising tide lifts all boats. Travel and tourism do have a lift across the economy and if we’re helping each other in different communities then we’re all going to be stronger for it.

 

Adam Stoker:            [00:27:52] Great advice. Alright, well, thanks ladies both of you for coming onto the show today and sharing your knowledge, telling us about the Texas Travel Alliance and Travel and Tourism College. Thank you very much.

 

Jennifer Roush:         [00:28:03] Thank you so much for having us. We appreciate it.

 

Adam Stoker:            [00:28:05] If somebody wants to reach out to you guys, maybe they want to attend Travel and Tourism College next year. What’s the best way to get a hold of you?

 

Jennifer Roush:         [00:28:12] Just call the office asked for me, Jennifer Roush and yeah, I will get with you and talk about each of the programs interested in and yeah take it from there. So yeah, I would like to reach out to people.

 

Adam Stoker:            [00:28:24] Great, and it’s texastravelalliance.org, right?

 

Erika Boyd:               [00:28:26] Texastravelalliance.org. Start there, do some reading, do some research, reach out to us, both of our contact information the whole team is on the website.

 

Jennifer Roush:         [00:28:35] We have a contact us page with all of us and then my name is of course listed on a lot of the web pages for the event. So easy to find.

 

Adam Stoker:            [00:28:43] Perfect, perfect. Well thanks to both of you again, we really appreciate you sharing your knowledge and your time with us today.

 

Erika Boyd:               [00:28:48] Thanks for having us. Thanks for being in Texas.

 

Adam Stoker:            [00:28:50] Absolutely and thanks everybody for listening. Thanks for bearing with us with some of the coffee shop sounds and the train sounds that happened during the show. But if you enjoyed today’s episode, please don’t forget to leave us a rating or a review that always helps us, helps us to continue to grow our audience. And other than that, we’ll see you next week.

 

Hi everyone, you’ve probably heard the episode that I recorded a few weeks ago with Laurie Jo Miller Farr from the Travel Vertical and eTourism Summit and I’m so excited we’ve got a great new show coming out where Lori and I will be going through the week’s news that you probably see in the Travel Vertical email that goes out. If you haven’t subscribed, you most definitely need to subscribe to the travel vertical email. But in addition to that, we’re going to be every other week rounding up the news from the industry. We’re going to talk about what positions are available in the industry. So if you’re looking for something, looking for a change, make sure you tune in because you’ll find out the latest jobs that are available.

 

We’re also going to talk about the amazing ideas that we’re seeing in the industry, whether it’s a creative campaign, an innovative tactic, a unique partnership. We may even talk about something outside the industry that is really relevant for all of you that are listening. So if you’re looking for more industry content, especially in the form of a podcast, you’re not going to want to miss this show. It’s the Travel Vertical Podcast hosted by me and our friend, Laurie Jo Miller Farr from the Travel Vertical and eTourism Summit. We’re going to do it every other week. You’re going to love this content. It will help you stay up to date with what’s going on in the industry.

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