The hospitality industry is enormous and offers an array of rewarding management positions at hotels, private clubs, restaurants, food service companies, resorts, cruise lines, casinos, and more. A rise in business travel and a growing interest in domestic and foreign tourism have increased the need for skilled hospitality managers. While a degree is not always required to work in the hospitality management field, a higher education certainly gives you a competitive edge in the job market. If you love to travel, enjoy working with people, and are looking for a way to incorporate your education into your busy schedule, learn about what it takes to earn a hospitality management degree online.
Earning a Hospitality Management Degree Online
Online hospitality management degrees enable students to fit their studies into their busy lives. Not only are online programs flexible, but they also give students the opportunity interact with other students from around the world. Hospitality management degrees are offered at the associate’s, bachelor’s, master’s, and doctoral level.
Two-year associate’s degrees and four-year bachelor’s degrees in hospitality management qualify graduates for most entry-level jobs, while master’s degrees are appropriate for those who would like to pursue advanced leadership roles. Doctoral degrees in hospitality management, which involve a great deal of research as well as a thesis, prepare students for positions like university professor or hospitality/tourism researcher.
Hospitality management is also an available concentration for the Master of Business Administration (MBA) and Doctor of Business Administration (DBA), which provide a broad business foundation in addition to hospitality courses. Master’s degrees take one to two years to complete, and doctoral degrees take three to five years.
Curriculum & Prerequisites for Hospitality Management Online Degree Programs
The admissions requirements for undergraduate programs in hospitality management are typically a high school diploma or GED, standardized test scores, and a minimum required GPA. Graduate degree programs in hospitality management usually require students to have a bachelor’s degree from an accredited institution, GRE or GMAT scores, and a minimum required GPA. Some doctoral programs may also require a master’s degree, as well as professional experience in the hospitality industry.
The curriculum of hospitality management online degree programs varies depending on the degree level, but there are a variety of subjects you are likely to study, including the following:
- Customer service
- Operations management
- Hospitality accounting
- Cost control
- Meeting and event management
- Hotel management
- Human resource management
- Quantity food production
- Restaurant management
- Tourism management
In addition to taking a variety of business courses, students are also encouraged to pursue internships in their areas of interest so they can be exposed to the hospitality industry both inside and outside of the classroom. Hospitality management is a truly international industry, so many programs offer study abroad opportunities, as well.
Hospitality Management Career Outlook
The hospitality industry offers a world of opportunities. Individuals trained in hospitality management oversee operations where food, lodging, and other services are provided. The internationally recognized skills that an online hospitality management degree provides may qualify you for the following job opportunities:
- Lodging manager
- Restaurant manager
- Guest relations officer
- Front office manager
- Banquet/event coordinator
- Sales and marketing manager
- Food and beverage director
Hotels and other hospitality venues tend to offer a wide range of services and amenities, which allows hospitality managers to tackle a variety of tasks. The duties of a hospitality manager might include coordinating front-office activities; setting hotel room rates and budgets; greeting guests; ensuring that customer service, housekeeping, and food-quality standards are met; interviewing, hiring, and training staff members; monitoring staff performance; and so much more.
However, the hotel and restaurant management industry tends to be very competitive. From 2010 to 2020, the Bureau of Labor Statistics reports that employment for lodging managers will increase at a slower than average rate of 8%, whereas employment for restaurant managers will decrease slightly at a rate of 3%. Although the travel and tourism industry is anticipated to be strong, hotels are expected to cut-back on their full-service amenities. Furthermore, fewer eating and drinking establishments are projected to open over the next decade. Fortunately, those with a degree in hospitality or hotel and restaurant management are expected to have an edge of the competition in the job market.
In 2012, the median annual salary for lodging managers was $46,810, while food service managers earned $47,960. If you would like to build an exciting, people-oriented career with incredible opportunity, launch an exciting career in hotel and tourism management by earning an online hospitality management degree. Explore hospitality management schools online today!