More and more hotels prefer that their employees have additional education, especially for management positions. While most hotels want their managers to have a degree in hotel or restaurant management, many will also accept a liberal arts degree if it is combined with enough experience. Completing an internship, working part-time or during the summer at a hotel is vital to those seeking degrees in the hospitality field. The on the job training that is received is invaluable to graduates and give them great business contacts for their job search. A majority of 4 year degree programs offer work study to fulfill this need.
Previously most management positions were fulfilled from within the hotel by promoting from the lower level positions. While it is still possible to advance in this manner with out any formal education after high school, a degree is a great advantage over the competition. If you have restaurant experience and training, it will also give you a great advantage. This is because a hotels food and beverage services are a huge part of their operations.
Hundreds of different schools currently offer various degree programs in hospitality careers. Depending on your career plan you can obtain an associates, bachelors and graduate degree. That is not including all the technical and vocational institutes that offer certificate programs as well. These degree and certifications are in a wide range of careers such as various management, administration, accounting, business, food service, catering and even hotel engineering positions.
After graduation, most college students start as assistant managers and move their way up when they gain more experience. An increasing number of bigger hotels have created special on site training programs that take trainees through all the departments so they know every aspect of the hotels operations. There are also tuition reimbursement programs for those employees who want to get a degree in a hospitality related field. New hotels, especially one with well established training programs want to hire experienced managers at first but will eventually open positions for those less experienced.
There are going to be more opportunities for jobs and advancement into management positions at the larger hotels and motel chains. Little independent establishments just do not have as many opportunities to offer. However larger hotel and motel chains do often require their managers and assistance managers to relocate every few years. The larger hotel and motel chains are going to have a more extensive career ladder to be climb. At the top of these ladders there are some of the most lucrative management positions when compared to any business industry. While the higher you go the more responsibilities you undertake, the more money, benefits and perks you will receive.