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Program Web Address

www.hhdev.psu.edu/shm

Abstract

Despite the almost one-hundred-year history of hospitality-management education; the hundreds of well-established two-year, four-year, and graduate programs worldwide; and the hundreds of thousands of graduates those programs have prepared for careers in the industry, hospitality-management education’s merit and place in higher education are still questioned at times, to the dismay of hospitality educators the world over. This article delineates several features of hospitality management that make these programs valuable and unique and provides compelling arguments in its favor. The arguments include: 1) courses tailored to the hospitality industry, the world’s largest industry; 2) focus on small-business management as well as corporate enterprises; 3) emphasis on services and service management, not manufacturing; 4) programs and coursework focused on people management, which it at the core of the hospitality businesses; 5) unique focus on the specific issues of food and beverage management, the largest component of the hospitality industry; and 6) transferability of graduates’ knowledge and skill sets, which are in high demand among other service industries. While business programs focus on the fundamentals of management and production, hospitality- management programs prepare graduates who are aware of general management principles and are particularly well-versed in managing the guest experience and employees in a service environment.