From the bellhop to the valet to the friendly efficiency of the front desk, the hospitality industry broadly describes services to guests. This includes hotel management, tourism, and restaurant management, among other fields.
Degrees in hospitality management may also be referred to as hotel management, hotel and tourism management, or hotel administration. Degrees conferred in this academic field include Bachelors of Arts, Bachelors of Science, Masters of Science, MBA, and Doctorate of Philosophy.
Community colleges, junior colleges, and many universities in Seattle offer certificate or degree programs in hotel, restaurant, or hospitality management leading to an associate, bachelor, or graduate degree. Seattle's technical institutes, vocational and trade schools, and other academic institutions also offer courses leading to formal recognition in hospitality management.
When making a decision on which specific degree program to pursue in Seattle, prospective students must first consider their desired specialty, such as restaurant management, hotel management, tourism, marketing, or special events, and then look for programs that have particular strengths or available concentrations in that particular area. Employers look for candidates with knowledge and skills in several areas including: information technology, human resources, organizational behavior, multiculturalism, and leadership. In today's competitive market, it is important to seek out a program that fosters the development of each of these areas.
Another very important part of a hospitality education is hands-on experience. Many schools offer internship opportunities for students to gain relevant work experience in local restaurants, hotels, and convention centers. Some schools have on-campus facilities that serve as learning centers for hospitality students. This hands-on experience gives students an edge over the competition when seeking a job.
Hotel Managers make management decisions about the hotels they run, including who to hire, rates to charge, and how to settle disputes. Depending on the hotel and the size of its staff, hotel managers may either perform or direct housekeeping, personnel, office administration, marketing and sales, purchasing, security, maintenance, oversight of recreation facilities, and other activities. Hotel management degree programs are generally considered good preparation for this career, since they cover both business and management concepts, and issues related specifically to tourism and accommodations.
Restaurant Managers run restaurants and similar food service establishments. They oversee the buying of food, menu creation, food preparation and service, employees, costs, and many other things. Sometimes chefs with experience and money open and manage their own restaurants; business owners with other experience may do the same thing. There are also restaurant management programs that prepare graduates for the field.
Event Planners responsibilities includes budgeting, establishing dates and alternate dates, selecting and reserving the event site, acquiring permits, and coordinating transportation and parking.
Wherever you want to go in your career, a graduate education from Keller Graduate School of Management can help get you there.
American Hotel and Lodging Association - Association of hotel representatives working toward positive business for the industry
American Society of Travel Agents - Largest organization of travel agents works to enhance profitability and professionalism for travel professionals
Hotel Online - Hospitality industry resources include news, trends, catalogs, messages, and classified ads
National Restaurant Association - Trade organization that provides its members latest news and trends along with myriad other resources