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I have a few questions for you: Who wants to travel? Who wants to meet new people on a regular basis? Who wants to get paid to do so? Now that I have your attention, let me tell you about a major that will allow you to do this and more.

This major is full of fun classes (see Gina’s latest post), awesome professors (check out my interview with Dr. Roberson) and tons of possible career paths. It involves being creative, personable, hands-on and upbeat. With this major, you have a chance to lift people up and change their whole outlook on an experience. Have you guessed the major yet? It’s Hospitality Management!

So, I bet you are thinking, “Well, this all sounds awfully wonderful! I want to travel. I like people. I want to meet new people. I want to be paid. Sure, Hospitality Management…but what career paths can I actually take as a Hospitality Management major?” Okay, maybe your thoughts may not have been exactly like that, but I will answer your hypothetical thoughts anyway.

Lodging Management

This is probably the most well-known career path for a Hospitality Management major. How would you like to be a part of people’s vacations and help them make memories? Lodging management involves hotels, motels, resorts and any other place that provides people with a place to kick off their shoes at the end of the night.

In lodging management, hospitality management graduates would be in charge of the daily operations of the lodge. They could be involved in marketing, sales, employee relations, customer service, budget and operation. This means you could essentially be a part of almost any area within the lodge! You choose where you want to build you career. Best of all, average salaries range from $30,000-$100,000, depending on experience.

Event Planning

Everything from big parties to weddings to other special occasions need to be planned! A Hospitality Management major provides you with the skills to do so. You can work side-by-side with someone to plan their special day, including decisions like location, time, date and theme. You also get to work with businesses to help with decorations, food and entertainment to help create the dream event. And, you may get to travel.

Student Alison Vogler and her new husband showing off their wedding rings and her bouquet.

Student Alison Vogler and her new husband showing off their wedding rings and her bouquet.

Besides specific events, you could combine your hospitality management skills with another interest. If you like music and sports, you could work for a venue like the Quicken Loans Arena in Cleveland. You may have to work your way up in this industry before getting to plan anything by yourself, but if you are organized, creative and have the proper education, you could have a great career.

Travel

Would you mind working on a cruise line? How about giving tours at a popular vacation spot? Or helping plan dream trips for families? Hospitality Management is a way to get to travel and work with people.  You could cruise the Caribbean Sea with Disney Cruises or give tours on the streets of Rome (learning the beautiful Italian language) or help a family plan an once-in-a-lifetime vacation to London.

Along with the perks of helping people travel, you often get travel perks yourself, including discounts and travel opportunities. Companies may move you or send you somewhere so you can give the client a story from first-hand experience. Besides the possibility of your own travel, you can earn great money.

Human Resources

Still not sure a Hospitality Management major is for you? Hospitality Management provides you with the necessary skills to work in other fields, specifically Human Resources. Human Resources takes the skills that a Hospitality Management major teaches and puts them into play, but instead of working directly with consumers, you are behind the scenes with employees. You can work in benefits, insurance, paychecks, hiring, conflict resolution, and more.

These are only a few of the many career paths a Hospitality Management major could take. Ashland University strives to prepare Hospitality Management majors with the skills they need to take whatever path they would like, and with the many opportunities available to them, along with help from academic advisers, AU students have great opportunities to be happy in their future careers.

Erynn Franks is a senior marketing major at Ashland University. She is a member of Theta Phi Alpha Fraternity and Enactus.

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