LANSING, Mich. - The Team Lansing Foundation and the Greater Lansing Convention and Visitors Bureau are pleased to announce the launch of a formal educational program focused on increased local tourism asset awareness to be known as the Greater Lansing Tourism Ambassadors Program.

The goal of the program is to equip residents in front-line hospitality and tourism-related positions, such as hotel, local attractions and restaurant employees, with a more in-depth knowledge of the area's many assets so they may help create a more positive and memorable visitor experience. Upon completion of the program curriculum, delivered through reading assignments and one half-day in-class session and exam, participants will receive a thorough education and a nationally recognized certification designation to add to their resume.

"Tourism is about creating experiences and front-line workers can have the biggest impact on making a visitor's time in Greater Lansing memorable," said W. Lee Hladki, President of the GLCVB and Executive Director of the Team Lansing Foundation. "We feel equipping local hospitality staff with this esteemed certification will give front-line workers confidence in their interactions with guests, pride in our region and credibility within our industry."

The GLCVB has partnered with The Tourism Ambassadors InstituteTM (a subsidiary of Mickey Schaefer and Associates LLC) to present this nationwide certification program that is rapidly being adopted by CVBs across the country. To date, over 8,000 individuals in fourteen states have achieved the Certified Tourism AmbassadorTM designation nationwide, with over 10,000 expected by 2011.

The program begins August 24, 2010. While focused on the hospitality community, any interested Greater Lansing resident may enroll. The cost for the course is $20 per person, with group rates also available. To access a class schedule and additional information visit or