All Associates in Hospitality Management Degree Programs

Associate degree programs in hospitality teach students a combination of management and communication skills, which are crucial in the hospitality industry. Depending upon the program offered in the college or university of choice, a student can gain other skills such as work specific training in the hospitality department such as hotels, tourist destinations and food and beverages establishments. Full time students may take two years to complete the required combination of degree specific and general education courses. During this time a students may decide to take courses such as associate of arts or associate of applied science in hospitality management or hospitality and tourism.

In many cases the associate degree is divided into two degree programs: hospitality management associate of applied science and hospitality and tourism management associate of science. The hospitality and tourism management associate of science allows students, in some cases, to specialize. Most entry level management courses do not require that one has a degree, however it is mandatory that a person has some post-secondary education to allow for full career advancement.

Associate of applied science in hospitality management

Many hospitality management degree programs include the study of both theoretical and practical management skills, food and beverages management and hospitality business law. Students also need to develop their skills in purchasing, budgeting and cost control. Associate schools require a high school diploma or an equivalent for the student to be able to register and begin the course.

The program course

Associate programs most times take 64-66 hours to complete although this might be variant from university to university some requiring 96 credit hours, one- third of which are dedicated o general education credits. The main course units required from a student with a pass to be considered totally successful in their hospitality career include:

  • Hospitality account
  • Food production analysis
  • Restaurant management
  • Hotel management
  • Food safety and sanitation
  • Hotel and restaurant marketing
  • Restaurant and hotel purchasing and cost control

Common career options

Students with this degree qualify to get jobs in government tourism offices, hotels, restaurants and resorts. Most students in this degree option may feel comfortable choosing some courses more that others. The most popular choices include:

  • Management trainee
  • Dining room supervisor
  • Banquet sales coordinator
  • Guest services manager

Many associate degrees in hospitality management often act as stepping stones for students to get into the bachelors and master’s degree programs in the same field. The industry is often chasing after graduates with B.A.A or M.S degrees in hospitality management within the field because of their technical familiarity. These students have a great chance of rising to the highest levels of management within hospitality organizations.

Associate degree in hospitality and tourism

The difference between this and the associate degree in hospitality management is that this one takes special emphasis on travel planning and tourism skills. The degree requires a minimum of 60 hours of coursework though some may require 90 credit hours. Educational requirements include:

  • Principles of management
  • Cruises
  • Geography
  • Airline computing training
  • Tours and tour products
  • Financial accounting
  • Event planning
  • Hotel operations
  • Tourism sales and marketing
  • Travel sales

Salary and employment outlook

The employment of students with associate degrees depend on how busy the travel and tourism industry is in the country the student wants to work. If it is high then chances of being employed are also high. Nevertheless, some industries estimate that the opportunities for managers are limited. Therefore, students should also look at the tourism and travel industry in their country of choice so they do not lack jobs even after paying for the education required.


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