Associate in Hotel and Restaurant Management Program Guide

BestColleges.com is an advertising-supported site. Featured or trusted partner programs and all school search, finder, or match results are for schools that compensate us. This compensation does not influence our school rankings, resource guides, or other editorially-independent information published on this site.

Ready to start your journey?

By Bethanny Parker

Published on April 19, 2021

Share on Social

If you have an interest in making guests comfortable or serving great food, an in-person or online associate degree in hotel and restaurant management might be the right choice for you.

Graduates with an associate degree in hotel and restaurant management qualify for jobs as lodging managers and food service managers. Although these jobs do not necessarily require an associate degree, earning a degree can give candidates an edge over applicants without a degree.

Should I Get an Associate Degree in Hotel and Restaurant Management?

It usually takes two years to earn an associate degree in hotel and restaurant management.

Although the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) projects a 12% decline for lodging managers between 2019 and 2029, it also projects an available 50,600 jobs in the field by 2029. Additionally, the BLS expects the demand for food service managers to grow by 1% between 2019 and 2029.

It usually takes two years to earn an associate degree in hotel and restaurant management. As such, this degree makes a good choice for prospective students who want to enter the workforce quickly.

An associate degree can also be a launching pad for students who want to continue their education. Students may be able to transfer to a four-year college or university to complete their bachelor's degree after earning their associate degree at a community college. If you choose to take this route, check with the school you plan to enroll in and make sure your credits will transfer.

Hotel managers can opt for a variety of certifications that might boost their resumes. Examples include destination management certified professional (DMCP) and certified government meeting professional (CGMP). Restaurant managers and workers may need to be ServSafe® certified.

Check out the Best Online Associate in Hotel & Restaurant Management Programs

What Will I Learn in a Hotel and Restaurant Management Associate Program?

Students in a hotel and restaurant management program explore the fundamental issues that affect hotels and restaurants. They learn how to manage a hotel or restaurant, including ordering supplies, marketing services, and providing excellent customer service. Many programs prepare students to become ServSafe® certified.

Required courses differ by program but usually include general education and business courses, including courses specific to hotel and restaurant management. At Joliet Junior College, for example, core requirements for hospitality management include beverage management, customer service for hospitality, hotel and restaurant law, and cost control for the hospitality industry.

Most schools that offer an associate degree in hotel and restaurant management offer either an associate of science (AS) or an associate of applied science (AAS). An AS degree prepares students to transfer to a four-year school, while an AAS degree prepares them to enter the workforce.

Still Looking for the Right Fit? Discover Similar Programs

Associate in Hospitality Management Program Guide Associate in Administrative Assisting Program Guide Associate in Accounting Program Guide

What Can I Do With an Associate Degree in Hotel and Restaurant Management?

Associate in hotel and restaurant management degree-holders most often work in the accommodation and restaurant industries. They may also work in special food services, at RV parks and campgrounds, and in the meetings and special events industry.

Career opportunities include hotel guest services, housekeeping, event management, hotel bars, and revenue management. Graduates can also pursue careers in restaurant management, catering management, wedding planning, and convention center management.

Popular Career Paths

Popular Continued Education Paths

How Much Money Can I Make With an Associate Degree in Hotel and Restaurant Management?

According to the BLS, the median pay for a lodging manager is $54,430 per year. Restaurant managers make slightly more, with a median salary of $55,320 per year. Meeting, convention, and event planners earn a median income of $50,600 per year. Related careers include gaming service worker ($23,520) and travel agent ($40,660).

Frequently Asked Questions About Associate Degree in Hotel and Restaurant Management Programs

What is an associate degree in hotel and restaurant management?

An associate in hotel and restaurant management is a two-year degree that prepares students for jobs as restaurant and hotel managers. Students learn about the various aspects of hospitality management, including marketing and cost control.

How much does it cost to get an associate degree in hotel and restaurant management?

The cost of an associate degree depends on the tuition rate at the school, which can vary considerably. The average cost of an associate degree at a public school is $6,740 for an in-state learner, and the average cost at a private school is $31,950.

Is an associate degree in hotel and restaurant management worth it?

Whether a degree is worth it depends on the cost of the degree and the expected outcome. Compare the cost of an associate degree at your school of choice with the salary you expect to receive after graduation to determine whether the degree is worthwhile.

What can you do with an associate degree in hotel and restaurant management?

Graduates can expect to work as managers in the hotel and restaurant industries. They may hold jobs, such as restaurant manager, hotel manager, bar or lounge manager, or meeting planner.

What's the difference between an associate degree in hospitality management and an associate degree in hotel and restaurant management?

Hospitality management and hotel and restaurant management have much in common, but hotel and restaurant management focuses on hotels and restaurants exclusively. Hospitality management also covers other aspects of hospitality, such as the relaxation industry, travel, cruises, and event management.

Explore the top software engineering bootcamps offered online and in person, and learn more about software engineer career paths. Learn about Coding Dojo bootcamp programs and explore frequently asked questions about this top coding bootcamp. An MBA can open the door to many high-paying jobs in the business field. Learn about the best MBA jobs in 2021, from accountant to product marketing manager.

BestColleges.com is an advertising-supported site. Featured or trusted partner programs and all school search, finder, or match results are for schools that compensate us. This compensation does not influence our school rankings, resource guides, or other editorially-independent information published on this site.

Compare your school options.

View the most relevant school for your interests and compare them by tuition, programs, acceptance rate, and other factors important to find your college home.