WELLNESS AND SPA SERVICE DESIGN AND MANAGEMENT

New schoolyear has started!

Today the new schoolyear started. Every new year brings changes and new things that make the students life at Pärnu College exciting. Today I want to introduce our new lecturer of the programme, Margrit Kärp. We met a month ago to discuss the course and the teaching and she agreed to give me an interview. I am happy to share it now with you.

Interview with Margrit Kärp, our new lecturer of Wellness History and Philosophy

Margrit Kärp, lecturer at University of Tartu Pärnu College
  • KT: Margrit, you start lecturing at Pärnu College for the first time this autumn. Please tell me, how have you been involved in spa and wellness industry?

  • MK: I have been in love with spa and wellness industry since 2003 when I started my career in Tervis Paradiis as a water park manager. This was the love from the first sight. I was busy with managing water park for almost 6 years, then I had a great chance to run the spa services department in the same enterprise – Tervis Spa Group. It was a great possibility to develop the new services, also it was a challenge to keep equally skilled staff as well the equally high service level. Then, coincidentally, I got the job of my dreams – I was selected to be a member of the leading group as a spa manager to open the Hedon Spa Hotel from the very beginning. It was the time full of intensive brainstorming and mindwork, but in such creative and motivated team it was all worth it and very satisfying.
  • KT: We have worked together before. You were hosting our students at Tervis Medical Spa for many years. Please tell us more about your work as a spa manager.
    MK: As a manager of one department I was responsible for the everyday functioning as well for the longer term strategic directions. The budjeting, revenues and expences, pricing the services, developing the new services and training the personnel, developing the network of suppliers, organising the working schedules, job interviews and training new staff etc, etc. The list of tasks was various and unbounded – whatever it takes to make the department to operate in high level.
  • KT: I think you liked working with students. Our conversations, I remember, were always very open, sincere and friendly. The students got a lot of useful information from you.
    How does it feel to start working with students?
    MK: Indeed, I liked it. It is always great to see the radiance in students’ or anybody else’s eyes. The students are usually in the beginning of their careers and they are very keen to see and learn something new, to create their own vision of their own growth and possibilities.
    And today I feel the same excitement, it is something that is brand new for me and I think the time is right to do it.
  • KT: You have studied here at Pärnu College. Can you tell us more about it? What was your favorite topic?
    MK: Actually it is quite hard no highlight some, because the program is complete and the topics were integrated and supported each other. Of course there was some topics that were not so attractive for me personally, but looking back from where I stand now – I wouldn’t have seen the whole picture if some of the not-so-attractive topics were not included into the program. Usually these kind of topics give the fundamental knowledges and without the basics we hardly understand the details and cannot see the big picture, the connections between different fields. And finally – the main role of the university is to teach us think, to observe, to evaluate, to synthesize, to compare, to respect, to analyse, to understand, to create etc. The aim is not to offer topics that are just for fun.
  • KT: What was your Master’s Thesis about?
    MK: As a former athlete I wanted to find out if either at all and how the non-profit Estonian sport organisations can measure their performance. Accordingly to the results of the survey, no systematic activities for performance assessment have developed, although heads of Estonian National Sports Federations have recognised the need for performance assessment and the importance of different performance indicators. At present National Sports Federations are more focused on the fulfilment of requirements for obtaining support from the state budget and on the achievement of top results in sports than other indicators of the performance of an organisation.
  • KT: Margrit, you have grown up here. How can you describe Pärnu to our students who just arrive and adapt to a new life. Do you have some tips, suggestions?
    MK: The mouse does not run into the mouth of the sleeping cat. So, if You want to see something, if You want to meet someone and if You want to become somebody, then You just have to get out of Your room. Pärnu is the ideal combination of small quiet safe city and fast-flowing information, You can find friendly and hospitable habitants, You can focus on Your studies in peaceful environment without lacking any newest information of accomplishments in science. The world is right here, You just have to reach it.
  • KT: Thank you so much, Margrit, and I wish you good luck!

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