Area: Management

Sub-Area:

  • Lodging Management Including:
    • Operations Management
    • Property Management
    • Facility Management
    • Rooms Management
    • Banquet and Catering Management
    • Human Resources
  • Restaurant/Food Service Management Including:
    • Operations Management
    • Food Quality and Food Safety
    • Menu Design
    • Production and Service of Food
    • Cost Control
    • Human Resources
  • General Management of Other Related Facilities

Employers:

  • Lodging: hotels/motels, resorts, bed and breakfasts, timeshares, RV parks, and campgrounds
  • Restaurants, dining clubs, taverns, and fast food operators
  • Food service providers: catering companies, schools, universities, hospitals, and military
  • Amusement centers and theme parks
  • Historical, cultural, and natural attractions
  • Special event and festival organizations
  • Conference centers and banquet facilities
  • Entertainment industry: casinos, theaters, arenas, and stadiums
  • Leisure organizations: sporting clubs, recreation centers, fitness facilities, and country clubs
  • Ecotourism companies and outdoor outfitters
  • Property management companies

Strategies & Information:

  • Work in a restaurant, catering facility, campus dining hall, or local hotel to gain relevant experience.
  • Acquire supervisory skills and experience by taking on roles such as Assistant Manager or Student Manager.
  • Join student professional associations or organizations and seek leadership positions.
  • Build a strong foundation in customer service and management. Learn to communicate well with a wide variety of people.
  • Learn to work well in teams.
  • Develop the ability to make quick decisions independently and to handle stress all while meeting deadlines.
  • Prepare to work "from the bottom up" to gain industry experience and to relocate for promotions.

Area: Customer Services

Sub-Area:

  • Office Operations
  • Reservations
  • Sales
  • Travel Planning
  • Guest Relations

Employers:

  • Lodging: hotels/motels, resorts, bed and breakfasts, timeshares, RV parks, and campgrounds
  • Tour operators and guide services
  • Reservation companies
  • Historical, cultural, and natural attractions
  • Amusement centers, theme parks, and attractions
  • Conference centers and banquet facilities
  • Entertainment industry: casinos, theaters, arenas, and stadiums
  • Food service providers: catering companies, schools, universities, hospitals, and military
  • Transportation/travel industry: airlines, cruise companies, car rental agencies, travel agencies, airports, motor coach/tour carriers
  • Ecotourism companies and outdoor outfitters
  • Federal, state, and local government: tourism offices, visitor bureaus, convention centers, and park systems

Strategies & Information:

  • Demonstrate enthusiasm for working with the public.
  • To succeed in this area, develop an orientation toward service and attention to detail. Learn effective problem solving tools.
  • Gain experience in sales through part-time or summer jobs.
  • Start in reservations or telephone sales. Master the product line and learn to give excellent service.
  • Hone interpersonal communication skills and become adept at communicating with people from diverse backgrounds.
  • Take courses in a second language.
  • Learn about world geography and international travel regulations.
  • Research government job application processes. Intern with government agencies to increase chances of full-time employment.

Area: Special Events

Sub-Area:

  • Convention and Trade Show Planning
  • Convention Services Management
  • Meeting Planning
  • Entertainment/Event Planning
  • Athletic Event Planning
  • Programs and Activities Planning
  • Children's Programming/Planning

Employers:

  • Large hotels
  • Resorts
  • Amusement centers, theme parks, and attractions
  • Special event and festival organizations
  • Conference centers and banquet facilities
  • Entertainment industry: casinos, theaters, arenas, and stadiums
  • Athletic teams and organizations
  • Cruise companies
  • Leisure organizations: sporting clubs, recreation centers, fitness facilities, and country clubs
  • Trade and professional associations
  • State, federal, and local government: tourism offices, visitor bureaus, convention centers, and park systems
  • Large corporations

Strategies & Information:

  • Take classes in business, commercial recreation, advertising, and public relations.
  • Gain experience through planning activities and events for campus and community organizations.
  • Work with summer conferences and youth groups that your university may host.
  • Complete internships or work part-times jobs with local hotels, conference centers, and banquet facilities.
  • Develop the ability to make quick decisions independently.
  • Display good planning, organizational, interpersonal, and public speaking skills.
  • Learn to think creatively.
  • Attend conferences for student organizations and professional associations.

Area: Sales/Marketing

Sub-Area:

  • General Sales
  • Meeting and Convention Sales
  • Incentive Travel Sales
  • Media Planning and Development
  • Public Relations
  • Publicity/Promotions
  • Market Research

Employers:

  • Tour operators and guide services
  • Historical, cultural, and natural attractions
  • Lodging: hotels/motels, resorts, bed and breakfasts, timeshares, RV parks, and campgrounds
  • Reservation companies
  • Amusement centers, theme parks, and attractions
  • Special event and festival organizations
  • Conference centers and banquet facilities
  • Food service providers: catering companies, schools, universities, hospitals, and military
  • Entertainment industry: casinos, theaters, arenas and stadiums
  • Transportation/travel industry: airlines, cruise companies, car rental agencies, travel agencies, airports, motor coach/tour carriers, and rapid transit (AMTRAK)
  • Leisure organizations: sporting clubs, fitness/recreation facilities, and country clubs
  • Ecotourism companies and outdoor outfitters
  • Trade and professional associations
  • Federal, state, and local government: tourism offices, visitor bureaus, convention centers, and park systems
  • Public or private corporations

Strategies & Information:

  • Take additional courses in marketing and advertising.
  • Gain experience in sales and customer service through part-time or summer jobs and internships.
  • Develop excellent interpersonal and public speaking skills.
  • Learn to think creatively in order to develop unique marketing campaigns and sales techniques.
  • Join student organizations and professional associations and volunteer for publicity committees.
  • Attend conferences and trade shows.
  • Start in reservations or telephone sales. Learn the product line and how to deal with travel agents and customers.
  • Be willing to relocate to a major city like New York City, Los Angeles, Chicago, or Miami for more opportunities.

Area: Corporate Administration

Sub-Area:

  • Property Acquisition and Development
  • Legal Services
  • Research/Market Analysis
  • Marketing
  • Finance and Accounting
  • Human Resources:
    • Human Resource Management
    • Recruiting and Training
    • Employee Support Services
    • Labor Relations
    • Compensation and Benefits

Employers:

  • Parent corporations for large chains of:
    • Hotels, motels, and resorts
    • Restaurants and fast food operators
    • Food service providers
    • Casinos
    • Amusement centers and theme parks
    • Attractions
    • Fitness facilities
  • Airlines
  • Cruise companies
  • Motor coach/tour carriers
  • Rapid transit companies

Strategies & Information:

  • Assume leadership roles in student organizations and professional associations. Attend their meetings and conferences.
  • Study the industry leaders and trends by reading trade journals.
  • Gain experience in decision-making, planning, budgeting, and human resources through internships and summer jobs.
  • Develop excellent interpersonal and public speaking skills.
  • Prepare to work "from the bottom up" to gain industry experience.
  • Be geographically flexible and willing to relocate for promotions.
  • Create a network of contacts.
  • Obtain a graduate degree in business, law, or a related field to increase opportunities for advancement.

Area: Communications

Sub-Area:

  • Writing
  • Editing
  • Research
  • Electronic Media

Employers:

  • Self-employment/Freelance
  • Newspapers, magazines, and trade journals
  • Publishers: guide and travel books, travel newsletters
  • Internet sites
  • Video producers
  • Tour operators
  • Federal, state, and local government: tourism offices and visitor bureaus

Strategies & Information:

  • Study and gain an in-depth knowledge of industry trends.
  • Take journalism or English classes to hone writing skills.
  • Work for campus newspapers and other publications or write for organizational or departmental newsletters.
  • Develop effective research methods and computer skills.
  • Practice paying attention to detail and meeting deadlines.
  • Study or work abroad while in school.
  • Travel as much as possible in the United States and beyond.

Area: Education

Sub-Area:

  • Teaching
  • Research
  • Administration

Employers:

  • Colleges and universities

Strategies & Information:

  • Gain professional industry experience. Attend and speak at conferences, trade shows and professional associations. Network in the industry for professional contacts.
  • Determine an area of expertise. Gain an in-depth knowledge of that industry, its leaders and trends by reading recent books, journals, and annual reports.
  • Develop strong writing and research skills.
  • Maintain a high grade point average and secure strong recommendations for graduate school admission.
  • Obtain a Ph.D. to teach at the university level. Some community colleges may hire candidates with master's degrees.

General Information and Strategies