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ICC Wales taps Swansea University for conference ambassadors

ICC Wales underlined its commitment to bringing international association meetings to Wales by launching a recruitment drive for its Ambassador Wales Programme at Swansea University.

The aim of the Ambassador Wales Programme is to establish a network of patriotic professionals who believe in championing Wales as a conference, event and business event destination.

The university’s academics are seen as ideal candidates to promote this cause.

During the event, which took place in the College of Engineering at the university’s Bay Campus, academics had the opportunity to discover more being an active ambassador for Wales.

After giving the opening welcome, Andrew Rhodes, registrar and chief operating officer at Swansea University, said: “We were very pleased to welcome the team from ICC Wales to Swansea University and it was great to learn more about the venue we have all seen take shape as we drive past along the motorway. This conference centre is a very important new facility for Wales and we were excited to hear about how we can best work together to benefit from this fantastic opportunity, and the part the university and its faculty members can play in attracting and hosting new events.”

Professor Jackie Oldham, director of strategic initiatives, Oxford Road Corridor (Manchester’s Innovation District) and Health Innovation Manchester, gave a fascinating and informative insight into her experiences as a global ambassador for Manchester.

She said: “I used to think the role of ambassador was only for famous people like Brian Cox but I realised I was travelling to lots of conferences and making lots of connections, and that I could make a difference by promoting Manchester to these audiences. Not just the city as a destination but the expertise Manchester has developed within my own field of healthcare. The best example for me was bringing the inaugural World Healthcare Congress Europe to Manchester this year. That was something I never believed we would be able to achieve.”

Meanwhile Ian Edwards, CEO of ICC Wales, said: “Large conferences at ICC Wales will tap into the expertise of university research in the local area and engage university academics as speakers, so there is a real opportunity here to boost the university’s profile. Only a fraction of total conference spend will actually come to ICC Wales, the venue, with the remainder providing a wider economic benefit to the South Wales region projected to be around £70m per annum.”