Who doesn't love the sweet escape that a pleasant hotel stay can offer? Whether your sojourn is for business or pleasure, there is something irresistibly comforting about the promise of an endless supply of fluffy towels, crisp linens, room service, and every other little indulgence that a top-notch hotel stay provides. If you're the type of person who delights in the home-away-from-home aspect of a good hotel, a career in hotel management might be right for you.
Hotel Management School: What to Expect
Creating a perfect lodging experience requires a lot of coordination and preparation, and as a result, those who achieve success in the hotel management field often have a significant amount of formal training and experience in the tourism and lodging sector. Indeed, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the best opportunities in the hotel management field are likely to be reserved for job seekers with degrees or specialized training.
The training programs that require the least time, money, and effort are certificate programs in hotel management. Offered both online or in traditional campus settings, these short programs can typically be completed in a matter of months and offer a basic introduction to concepts of hotel management theory and practice.
At the other end of the spectrum are traditional degree programs in hotel management at the associate's, bachelor's, and master's degree level. These comprehensive curricula prepare job seekers for elite positions in the industry, such as serving as the hotel manager in a five-star, full-service lodging establishment. With today's distance learning opportunities, some of these hotel management degree programs can be completed online.
The specific course content of a certain hotel management degree varies according to the level of the program and the specific focus of the program. Typical course topics likely include:
- Introduction to management concepts
- Food service management
- Facilities management
- Hotel administration
- Financial management
- Guest experience management
- Hospitality legal issues and ethics
Career Options for Hotel Management School Graduates
There are as many career paths in the hotel management field as there are different types of lodging establishments. Entry-level jobs in the hotel management field could include serving as a supervisor or assistant manager at a limited-service motel. At the other end of the spectrum, top-ranking positions in the field could include serving as the general manager of an elite resort or filling the role of an executive officer for a worldwide hotel conglomerate.
A hotel manager's daily tasks vary depending on the type of hotel she works in. Examples of common duties include:
- Supervising hotel employees
- Inspecting rooms, food service facilities, and other areas of the property
- Greeting guests and handling customer complaints
- Overseeing financial and accounting activities
- Making hiring and firing decisions
- Making marketing decisions
- Creating promotions geared to increase the property's revenue stream
Salary Outlook for Hotel Management School Degree Holders
The average salaries in the hotel management field can vary widely according to factors such as education, experience, property location, property type, and managerial ranking. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the mean annual salary for hotel managers is $53,500.
Salaries vary by location as well; for example, the mean salary for hotel managers in Nevada is $74,180, while the mean salary for the same role in Mississippi is $39,410. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, candidates who complete at least a bachelor's degree in hotel management are likely to be positioned for the most lucrative jobs in the field, even as the overall number of opportunities in the field is likely to decline slightly in the years to come.
If you think that this field might be right for you, check out the latest offerings in online courses in hotel management to find an introductory program that piques your interest. Distance learning opportunities offer prospective hotel management students a great way to find out if this field is the right path before committing to a full-length course of study.