MBA in Hospitality Management: Degree Overview

Schools offer Master of Business Administration (MBA) programs in hospitality or hospitality management to students who would like to take on leadership roles in hotels, resorts and other businesses in the industry. Keep reading to learn more about these programs' coursework and admissions requirements.

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Master of Business Administration in Hospitality Management

Hospitality management MBA programs can prepare students to work for businesses that cater to international and domestic travelers alike. Through program coursework, students gain the leadership skills necessary to improve a restaurant's customer service, staff a hotel or increase a resort's revenues. They might also get to take advantage of co-op or internship opportunities. Program concentrations may be available in areas that include marketing and event leadership.

Education Prerequisites

To enter an MBA program, students usually need a bachelor's degree. They must also meet minimum grade point average requirements and provide personal references. Students in some programs need to complete prerequisite courses in topics such as hospitality law and event management.

Course Topics

The curriculum for an MBA program in hospitality management usually includes core business courses in accounting and economics. Coursework can also touch on topics in ethical management, career planning and research methods. Other topics covered in a program may include:

  • Decision-making and leadership
  • Corporate managerial finance
  • Event management
  • Event marketing concepts and analysis
  • Tourism issues and strategies

Popular Career Options

With an MBA in Hospitality Management, individuals may qualify for positions in a variety of business. Employers can include hotels, resorts and casinos. Possible job titles are listed below:

  • Event producer
  • Lodging manager
  • Meeting and convention director
  • Director of special events

Employment Outlook and Salary Information

Slower-than-average employment growth at a rate of 8% is projected for lodging managers over the 2010-2020 period, reports the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) (www.bls.gov). The median annual pay for lodging managers in May 2012 was $46,810. The BLS also reported a 44% employment growth projection for meeting, convention and event planners, which is much faster than average. These planners earned a May 2012 median wage of $45,810.

Continuing Education Information

Individuals who wish to teach at the collegiate level or conduct research for private businesses and government agencies can enter Doctor of Philosophy programs in hospitality management. Program focus areas or emphases can include sales and marketing as well as hospitality real estate management.

Voluntary certifications are also available through professional organizations like the American Hotel and Lodging Educational Institute (www.ahlei.org). Professionals who meet eligibility requirements and pass written exams can earn credentials such as the Certified Hospitality Supervisor.

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