Trusted Advisor Program

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What is the Trusted Advisor Program?

The Young Tourism Network (YTN) is a not-for-profit organisation that was established in 2005 with the aim to provide students and young professionals the opportunity to learn and grow through networking opportunities and professional development programs, gaining valuable knowledge and building strong relationships across the broader industry.

YTN’s Trusted Advisor Program started in 2017 as a one-to-one coaching program. The program has been reviewed to assess the needs of students, and it is taking a new form in 2020 – to address and mitigate concerns regarding the COVID-19 crisis. 



YTN’s Trusted Advisor Program aims to provide tourism, events and hospitality students (Advisees) the opportunity to learn from experienced professionals (Advisors), and gain a better understanding of the tourism industry and the jobs available within the different sectors.

The program offers development and networking opportunities for both Advisors and Advisees while delivering additional membership benefits for YTN members through sharing of knowledge and industry experience. 


For 2020, the goals for the Trusted Advisor Program are: 

1) To provide students with an understanding of the tourism industry.

2) To provide students with a link to the tourism industry.

3) To provide opportunities for students in tourism, events or hospitality to learn from experienced tourism professionals.

4) To provide established tourism professionals with an opportunity to enhance their existing leadership and communication skills by becoming an Advisor.


The program will run from August until late October with the expected commitment to be a 30-45 minute catch up, on a fortnightly basis. More time can be allocated pending the schedules of advisors and advisees. 

There will be an expectation on Advisees to initiate contact and organise meetups/phone calls/zoom conversations with their respective Advisors. However, we ask that Advisors assist as necessary with this, as many Advisees may not have the experience or confidence to.

Due to the social distancing regulations and the uncertainty that remains regarding what will and will not be permitted in Victoria, we ask that all Advisors and Advisees partake in this program with a flexible mindset.

Benefits and Requirements

Benefits of the program 

With 2020 already being an immensely turbulent year for tourism in Victoria, there is a strong need to connect emerging professionals with established professionals through programs such as the Trusted Advisor Program, to ensure professional development and mentoring experience is available for students and young professionals. 

Advisees will gain an understanding of the broader tourism industry, higher awareness of career pathways in tourism, receive career and professional guidance from an experienced professional and build a strong network within the industry. 

Through this program, Advisors will have the opportunity to enhance their leadership, coaching and communication skills while contributing to the future of the Victorian tourism workforce.


Key Dates*

  • Applications for Advisors are now CLOSED
  • Applications for Advisees are now CLOSED
  • Meet and Greet (Advisors & Advisees): Tuesday 11 August 
  • Program officially begins: Tuesday 18 August 
  • Workshop with Mel Neil (positive psychology practitioner and consultant, founder and CEO of Mind Insurance): Wednesday 19 August 
  • Closing networking event: Monday 19 October


*Please note that these dates may be subject to change

YTN will provide further information and some talking points and advice throughout the program.

If at any time you have any questions, please feel free to reach out via email:

Meet Mel Neil

Mel Neil- Mind Insurance

Mel Neil is an Australian positive psychology practitioner and consultant. She designs and delivers custom emotional intelligence and strengths based leadership and performance programs for public and private sectors. As a credentialed trainer in leading emotional intelligence and positive psychology assessment instruments, Mel also provides certified training, course facilitation and coaching.

Mel’s innovative programs are recognised by peak bodies both domestically and internationally. She co-designed the first Australian Government accredited Diploma of Positive Psychology which is now delivered in the United Kingdom, Canada and New Zealand. She also co-designed and continues to facilitate the award-winning Melbourne Tourism Leadership Program. 

The uniting theme of Mel’s work is her desire to empower and facilitate the success of individuals and communities. This objective drives the astute application of her positive psychology research, knowledge and skills to teach both leaders and teams how to increase personal, business and collective well-being.

All Advisors will gain access to an enriching session with Mel at the beginning of the program.


Applications for advisors are open – see link above.
Please keep subscribe to our newsletter to be advised on when advisee applications open.

Advisees: only current members of the Young Tourism Network are able to participate. Students may be from any University, TAFE or Institute, however must be studying tourism, events, hospitality or a related field (e.g. marketing, business). Students may be at least half-way their studies.

Advisors: do not need to be a member of the Young Tourism Network but must have at least 5 years’ experience in one of the following fields:
– Marketing
– Customer Service/Front-of-house
– Events
– Tour operator/Tour Guides
– Sales/Business Development

You will be notified as decisions are made by the committee by email or phone.

With thanks to our Program Partner, Mind Insurance, the Trusted Advisor Program is entirely free for participants.

Thank you to our Program Partner: