The mission of the National Tourism Foundation is to
benefit society through the support of education and
research contributing to the values of travel and tourism.
Designated by the National Tourism Foundation Board of
Trustees as its top priority, education remains an issue
that inspires passionate support from travel and tourism
professionals at all levels. These individuals in the
industry recognize the importance of the Foundation and its
efforts to increase the quality of services available to
the general public.
The Foundation supports curriculum development in travel
and tourism education programs, cultivates the study of
packaged tour management and related travel curricula,
promotes the professional career opportunities provided by
travel and tourism, and enhances the basic education
criteria that will increase the worth of tourism at all
The Foundation heads up many efforts designed for students
in post-secondary education, with many scholarships awarded
annually to students from the United States and Canada
pursuing careers in travel and tourism. Various states and
provinces, private entities, and corporations sponsor these
scholarships. To date, more than 400 students have received
Foundation scholarships, valued at more than $1.5 million.
The Foundation also supports outside organizations devoted
to the betterment of the industry such as programs designed
with travel and tourism curricula directed toward
exceptionally gifted students. The Foundation is honored
to offer scholarships and certificates of excellence to
qualified students in these programs.
As scholarship recipients, the students are recognized by
the entire industry as exceptional, opening doors that may
not be there otherwise. The Foundation is proud to say that
a great deal of its past scholarship recipients now find
themselves established in positions within the industry.
In addition to the cash award, most recipients are given
the opportunity to attend the National Tour Association's
Annual Convention - an all-expense-paid trip that includes
Convention registration, travel expenses, room and board.
This benefit alone is valued at more than $3,000 per
student. While at the Convention, the scholarship winners
benefit from a full week of access to more than 3,000 of
the industry’s leaders, attend educational programs,
participate in professional development seminars and much
more. It is here that they can make that one connection
that propels them into their career.
Ever striving to enhance the educational opportunities of
today’s students, the Foundation publishes and distributes
a listing of internships offered by tour suppliers, tour
operators and destination marketing organizations. These
lists are available to students pursuing a future in the
industry. Student interns are featured in Foundation
publications to stress the values of internships. Every
year hundreds of students and educators request the
Foundation’s internship list of more than 200 positions
The Foundation is also proud to offer two internships.
These positions are annual, fall semester, paid internships
to students of travel and tourism who meet the application
requirements set by the Foundation. Most of the
Foundation’s interns go on to work for tour operators,
hotels, and/or convention and visitors bureaus.
In an effort to continue to "educate the educator," the
Foundation has formed a program whereby educators have the
opportunity to learn firsthand about the National Tour
Association, the National Tourism Foundation, and the
overall packaged travel industry. An educator is selected
from among his/her peers to visit NTA Headquarters
for three days to meet with members of the NTA and the
Foundation management teams and discuss areas such as
conventions, marketing, education, industry and government
relations and membership. The "visiting scholar" is also
invited to attend NTA’s Annual Convention where he/she will
participate in various programs.
The Foundation conducts annual Pro/Am conferences where
students and faculty of the industry are invited to attend.
Each conference, in which the Foundation hosts at least 50
students and educators, allows "amateurs" to meet
the "professionals" in the tourism industry and gain
firsthand knowledge of how the packaged travel industry
operates. More that 100 schools across North America have
participated in this event.
CERTIFIED TOUR PROFESSIONAL (CTP) CERTIFICATE PROGRAM
A certificate program has been established by the
Foundation for educators to use when instructing students
in travel and tourism programs. This program allows student
to jump ahead of their peers by gaining up to one-half of
the credits needed to become a Certified Tour Professional.
This program is offered to students at the college level,
specifically designed to educate the student about the
packaged travel consumer and the travel industry in general.
The Foundation is committed to publicizing career days for
colleges and universities across North America. The
Foundation provides this information through its
publications and maintains a list on NTF Online.
The National Tourism Foundation, supports research that is
relative to travel and tourism, educational and scientific
in nature, and of use to the general public, academic
institutions, and the industry as a whole. This research is
intended to enhance the quality of the tourism industry by
improving the planning, development, and marketing of
Currently administering three research awards, the
Foundation supports outstanding studies of the tourism
industry. The Charles R. Goeldner Research Grant will be
made available to students conducting research in travel
and tourism once the grant reaches the minimum funding
level, and on behalf of the Travel and Tourism Research
Association, the Foundation sponsors a travel research
award. It also administers the annual $2,500 Luray Caverns
grant to a qualified graduate student conducting research
on a thesis, dissertation or terminal project related to
the industry. Topics covered include: "A Process for
Developing an Environmental Code of Ethics for the Escorted
Tour Industry," "The Tourism Satellite Account,"
and "Ecotourism--Attitudes of Tour Operators."
From 1992 through 1995 the Foundation published the "Tour
Traveler Index: A Profile of the Group Tour Consumer," a
five-year study prepared by the research firm of Davidson-
Peterson Associates, which identified trends, patterns, and
preferences of group tour consumers in North America.
Because of a grant from the National Tour Association, the
Foundation also conducted a panel study of group leaders
from across North America.
Several topics included in the Tour Traveler Index were:
tour travelers’ views of different tour features, the
relationship between price and date of booking a tour, the
interest in rail tour, and the importance of different tour
As part of the Certified Tour Professional program, the
Foundation also maintains a file of research papers written
by candidates of the program. These papers are timely and
informative and are available through the Foundation’s
The National Tourism Foundation is at a crossroad. The
Foundation, although celebrating its 20th anniversary, is
still young; however, it has established a record of
growth. Scholarships, fellowships, grants, and special
events have fueled this growth. They have included:
The Board of Trustees must continuously focus on the
Foundation’s future role and how to make the Foundation
more effective. Naturally, greater resources are necessary
to meet emerging needs.
To maintain the Board’s vision of the future, the National
Tourism Foundation has established corporate giving and
planned giving programs.
The corporate giving program, known as the Corporate Fund,
enables businesses who share the vision an additional
opportunity to participate in enhancing the travel
industry’s future. Corporate giving includes sponsorships,
patron gifts, cause-related marketing and grants.
The planned giving program is for those individuals who
recognize the importance of the long-term mission of the
Foundation. Planned gifts include bequests, cash or
appreciated assets, entering into a life income plan such
as a charitable annuity and trust. Life income gifts often
offer substantial tax benefits. Each gift ensures the
future heritage of the Foundation.
The National Tourism Foundation is dedicated to ensuring
that the travel and tourism industry has the capacity to
grow and prosper while serving the general public. The
industry must be able to anticipate change, adapt to that
change, and then educate and train our future leaders for a
different tomorrow. Growth in development initiatives will
fuel the Foundation’s ability to help the industry meet
these future challenges.
- Silent and Live Auctions
- Rock The Foundation
- NTF Golf Tournament
- Cruise Giveaways
- Luray Caverns Grant
- Memorial Scholarships
- State/Province Scholarships