WGSHA’s 31st Annual Day – An Ode to Hospitality
On the 2nd of February, MTTN was given the opportunity to partake in the 31st Annual Day Celebrations of the Welcomgroup Graduate School of Hotel Administration. The Event started at 6 pm with the guests being ushered in with respect and hospitality. The entire college was in a jubilant mood, as was clearly visible from the eager faces of everyone present at the extravaganza. The building was embellished in a rather appealing manner, complete with decorative lighting and a plush canopied path leading to the entrance.
As the crowd of students, parents and dignitaries settled down, the invocation and floral tribute by the MC followed in quick succession. The Principal of WGSHA Prof Parvathavardhini Gopalakrishnan gave the welcome address to the dignitaries and invitees of the event and the Annual Report of the year was presented. The Chief Guest of the day, Mr. Anil Sharma was then invited up on the stage to give the keynote speech.
Mr. Sharma has decades of experience working in the Hospitality Industry and now holds the position of Executive Vice President, Human Resources and Learning Services, ITC ltd. His speech was eloquent and full of anecdotes – he recalled how the prominent philosopher J. Krishnamurti once said that a person couldn’t change something that he was himself a part of, and extended the analogy to how aspiring individuals should be courageous to swim against the current. He also mentioned that advice is not always a positive thing and people’s decision making should be fortified by their own past mistakes.
Following the Chief Guest’s address, the students excelling in academics and co-curricular activities were honoured with the Annual awards. A wave of applause was heard when Chef S. Anthuvanraj was called up on the stage and bestowed the Best Teacher award of the year. The award for the best Girl student in terms of academic excellence instituted by Chef Vikas Khanna was presented to Aathira Sethumadhavan. The distinguished alumnus honours were given to Mr Neil George of the 3rd Course.
Mr. Daanyaal Lari, the president of the Student Council of WGSHA then took the dais and expressed his thanks to all those involved in organising the event and all the dignitaries who graced the event. Following this, a series of cultural programs took place to entertain the distinguished gathering.
While the cultural events continued, we were ushered into the place where all the magic was brewed. We were guided by the Student council representative, Mr. Rakshit Shetty through a series of turns in the labyrinthine corridors till we reached the Advanced Training Kitchen of the institute. As we got closer the inviting smell of the flavour infused air got us spellbound. It was bustling with busy chefs and kitchen-help fixed in an unending effort to create edible art.
As we stepped into the bakery, our pupils dilated and our hearts began racing at full throttle. The sweet aroma of freshly baked dough, chocolate syrup and strawberries was intensely mouth-watering, so we asked Rakshit in all honesty how they managed to hold back from eating while they were cooking, to which he said rather plainly with a straight-face that they never did. “Don’t trust a skinny chef”, he said. The food was an abbreviated version of the classic French 17-course meal, with the main course consisting of predominantly Indian cuisine and an assortment of desserts from around the world.
By 8:15 pm, dinner service was called and the food counters were flooded with people, who were served while a very talented student body serenaded them with live music. The dinner was a feast to remember with flavours aplenty. The dignitaries and faculty were served in the Banquet hall while a buffet was set up for everyone else in the lawns behind the institute.
Thus, the 31st Annual Day of WGSHA was brought to a close, with everyone leaving the venue fully satisfied, while carrying with them a bunch of memories to last them until, at the very least, their next Annual Day.
– Pranav Parashar and Rahul Basu for MTTN
(Pictures by Arun Raj and Niharika Nayak)