Lipian Bongani: “One must go for the Master's in LGBT Tourism at CETT-UB as soon as an opportunity arises”
Lipian Bongani Mtandabari (he/him) was born in Zimbabwe but now he is based in South Africa. Lipian is currently leading the LGBTQ Diversity and Inclusion masterclasses for tourism service providers in Africa. In 2018, he started Ntsako Travel Africa, a LGBTQ+ travel company, with the aim to sell Southern Africa as an emerging destination for the LGBTQ+ community, as well as capacitating the service industry to embrace the LGBTQ+ travel and to become inclusive. He is also passionate about wildlife and environment conservation, and he has received several awards regarding his work.
LGBT tourism in Barcelona
Why did you decide to study the Master's in LGBT Tourism at CETT-UB?
Education plays a pivotal role in Africa, in terms of being accepted amongst professionals and how credible and authentic you become to your audience across the spectrum. When the opportunity presented itself to take up this program, I told myself that I would grab it with both my hands and run with it.
What knowledge has it given you?
This program has given me so much from the time I started; basic understanding of the history of the LGBT+ community across the world, including the history in Africa, the history of the community and most importantly, how LGBT+ tourism contributes to important issues such as the sustainable development goals among others. Above all, it has given me the necessary knowledge and expertise to understand the facets and dialogues of the market.
How do you think this master's degree can influence your professional career?
It increases my credibility amongst other tourism leaders and professionals, it boosts my knowledge skill when engaging in issues of the community and tourism market, and allows me to have a greater in-depth discernment. It increases my knowledge and resource scope.
Tourist attention to the LGBT collective
What is your opinion about the learning process of the master’s degree?
The learning process allows a student to engage at all levels and it cultivates a need in oneself to understand research processes that is involved in the studying process. It literally allows you an opportunity to understand the academic processes and inculcating it in the work environment easily.
What would you say to anyone who is thinking of studying this Master’s degree but has not yet fully decided?
This Master’s Degree is unique and very beneficial. One must go for it as soon as an opportunity arises. This offering is so unique and a game changer for the community, allies and the LGBT+ tourism market. One would not want to miss an opportunity of being part of this process.
How do you see your career in five years?
Once I’ve finished I am going to make sure I’ll continue to expand my learning scope. I see myself being one individual whose voice is relevant and beneficial to the advancing of the LGBT tourism in Africa and beyond. I am relevant to the cause because I am a qualified expert.