Overview of Hotel Management Degree Program

Overview of Hotel Management Degree Program

Mar 25, 2015 | 8:00 am

A hotel manager oversees the everyday operations of a hotel, motel, guesthouse, and other lodging establishments. The responsibility of hotel management employees may entail ensuring the quality and availability of hotel amenities, managing housekeeping, setting room rates, and organizing conferences.

Although a graduate of hospitality courses usually works in restaurants and hotels, earning a bachelor’s degree in this field qualifies graduates to work in catering establishments, cruise lines, airlines, hotel consulting firms, boarding facilities and theme parks. Advanced education, employment in a reputable company, and experience increases salary prospects and employability for hotel managers. As of 2012, the typical salary for lodging managers according to the United States Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) was $46,810.

Earning an Associate’s Degree in Hotel Management

An associate’s degree in hotel or resort management will prepare a student to fill entry-level leadership posts in the hospitality industry. A local college might offer a two-year associate’s degree course in this field. Interested applicants are expected to present their high school diploma or GED.


In an associate degree program, students will learn the fundamentals of operating a hotel as they also cultivate interpersonal skills needed in the hospitality industry. General education units are designed to complement the core courses. Students should expect the following common coursework:

•Legal issues
•Front office management
•Fundamentals of food preparation
•Hospitality marketing
•Principles of hotel management

Common Career Options

Although a graduate of a two-year hotel or resort management college program may be qualified to fill managerial positions in a small or medium-sized hotel, the graduate is more likely to support a manager with more education and experience. Common career options include:

•Guest services manager
•Dining room supervisor
•Assistant food & beverage manager
•Management trainee

Earning a Bachelor’s Degree in Hotel Management

This degree program consists of hospitality overview classes and general education credits. Within really large facilities, the duties of hotel managers is mostly divided into several areas, so applicants who wish to earn a bachelor’s degree may decide to focus on elective classes on a particular area, like events, kitchen management or sales. However, most four year bachelor’s degree programs ensure that every graduate is prepared for different administrative areas within the hospitality management field.

Anyone who wants to apply to a hotel or hospitality management program at the bachelor’s degree level will need to demonstrate a pure desire to work for and with other people. Having a background in business will prove helpful. In addition to this, applicants must be truly comfortable with the idea of working long hours; this includes weekends, nights and holidays. Applicants will also be required to present their high school diploma or GED. Some colleges will require students to present their SAT or ACT scores.


It is important to understand that most bachelor’s degree programs have a strong business component. Graduates of this program are trained and prepared to effectively handle financial files like marketing plans, inventory reports, pay schedules, and consumer reports. Students are also expected to complete internships. Example of course topics:

•Facilities management
•Sustainability & Environmental concerns
•Cost & resource control
•Food & Beverage systems
•Hotel business law

If you have a strong passion to work in the hospitality industry, earning a degree in the field is one way to start.