Masters in Hospitality Management Online Degree Programs of 2021

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Why Earn a Master’s in Hospitality Management (HM)?

Working to achieve a Master’s in Hospitality Management, either online or in flexible weekend/evening courses, is one of the best ways to ensure that your career in the hospitality industry or tourism industry continues to grow and develop. Employers value higher education more and more these days, so you might even find that your employer offers tuition reimbursement if you keep your grades up. Thus, if you are working in tourism and hospitality or hospitality business management and are eager to build on your education, you will be well-served by completing an online master’s in hospitality management program and you'll soon be able to rise into upper management. Hospitality professionals who are returning to a university as students in graduate hospitality management programs may focus on tourism and hospitality, international hospitality management, hospitality business management, lodging, and more.


There are many positive aspects of earning a master’s degree in hospitality and tourism management. The chief benefit is that you will attain the knowledge and skill to do your current job even better. Your improved performance, plus the degree itself, will soon lead to a higher salary, more calls from recruiters, and promotions up the corporate ladder.

When you enroll in an online or in-person master’s hospitality management degree program, you will essentially declare a dedication to your career in the hospitality industry. The resulting mastery of your field thus solidifies your personal investment, making hospitality your life's work. That sort of dedication is always rewarded, and you'll see your salary rise far beyond those who have completed only undergraduate hospitality management programs.

A master's also opens new opportunities. If you work in a large hotel chain, for instance, you could move into upper management or into their international hospitality management team. Then, once you put the degree on your resume, you'll find that you start receiving more offers for job interviews and interest from recruiters. A master's will often make you a hot item on the employment market.


Though there are many upsides to a master's hospitality management degree, there are also negatives. If, for instance, you pursue an online master's without a true drive and devotion to the hospitality industry or tourism industry, all of the expense and hard work might not be worthwhile. Perhaps you could choose a different degree, or a different field altogether.

Master's programs are also a huge commitment. If you are working full-time in the real world, your studies will add another 15-20 hours to your workweek for at least a year. Then, if you need to work overtime, the stress could become intense. And, if you are attending online and stretch out your courses, you could be in school off and on for four more years.

Finally, a master's degree is not a guarantee. While it may seem true that most graduate degree holders experience an increase in pay and receive promotions, that doesn't always happen. If it doesn't happen, then you are saddled with debt and a lot of lost time.

Before you enroll as a student in a graduate hospitality management program, be certain that you want the knowledge and education for its own sake and make sure you do some research on the income of graduates with master’s degrees in your field and region.

Overview of a Master's in Hospitality Management

What Hospitality Management Master’s Degrees are Available?

  • Master of Science in Hospitality Management
    An MS degree in Hospitality Management will focus more exclusively on the quantitative analysis involved in the field. That is, you might focus more on how to account for inventory and employment data.
  • Master of Arts in Hospitality Management
    An MA in Hospitality Management will provide a more well-rounded approach to the field. That is, your courses may cover softer topics such as leadership or theories of management, but you'll still cover things like inventory control and accounting.
  • Master of Management in Hospitality
    If you wish to focus exclusively on management and are less interested in topics like accounting or marketing, this could be the degree for you. If you graduated with a liberal arts degree in college, this may be the perfect choice.
  • Master of Business Administration – Hospitality
    An MBA program that offers a focus on Hospitality Management provides a comprehensive core business curriculum with an industry-centered focus on Hospitality. An MBA of this sort is a great move if you aspire to the C-suites.

Online Admission Requirements

If you want a master's degree in hospitality management, you will first have to be admitted to a program. Thus, you should have a strong academic background and strong experience in the field. Even online master's degrees sometimes require that you have experience in the field, and nearly all online degrees require the same tests and previous education as traditional programs. Depending on your intended program, you may need to have certain courses on your transcript, if not specific degrees. For instance, an MS or MBA may require that you have particular quantitative skills in, say, accounting.

Even if you aren't required to have business courses on your transcripts, you will likely need to show practical experience in the field and a strong GPA, too. All graduate programs want to see a solid history of academic achievement.

How long does it take to earn an Online Master’s in Hospitality Management?

You can earn a master's degree in hospitality management in as little as a single year if you focus nearly solely on your online education. Such accelerated programs are a great help if you can dedicate yourself to academics for a solid 12-month stint. On the other hand, there are online and traditional programs that take up to two years.

While it is recommended that you work hard on a full-time schedule so that you complete your degree in a timely fashion, not everyone is able to do this. Thus, when you make the decision to apply for a graduate program, create a workable schedule of courses that you can complete in no more than three years. Make sure you adhere to your timetable. After all, this degree will help steer the course of your life.

Potential Careers in Hospitality Management with a Master’s Degree

  • Meeting, Convention, or Event Planning
    Larger conventions and events need someone with the background to handle hundreds of moving parts with aplomb. Your management skills and business knowledge will help you pull off major logistical challenges with no worries. Professionals in this field earn a median salary of $57,800 and soon you'll be able to command that and more.
  • Food Service Management
    From a small diner to large-scale banquet operations, food service needs skilled management. Your master's degree will put you at the top of the field. If you have a culinary degree, you could work as an executive chef in a five-star hotel or maybe you can climb into upper management and oversee regional food service operations for a chain of restaurants or hotels. Professionals in this field earn a median salary of $46,500.
  • General Manager, Hotel
    If you are working in a large hotel with hundreds of rooms, you'll be happy that your master's degree in Hospitality Management prepared you to keep the operation running smooth. After all, you'll need to be prepared to oversee housekeeping, marketing, bookings, and every other aspect of a hotel. Professionals in this field earn a median salary of $57,100.
  • Sales Management
    Your graduate degree in Hospitality Management will prepare you to oversee a department that sells products such as resort packages, brokers conventions, and contracts hospitality packages for corporate executives. When your team meets your sales projections, you may even receive a bonus. In the meantime, executives in this field earn a median salary of $61,300.
  • Marketing Management
    You'll need to hone your creative an analytical skill for this position, and that's what your graduate degree is for. Your duties will include studying market data, conceiving new marketing strategies, and launching new marketing campaigns. You might also conduct market research studies to determine what contemporary customers need the most. Your hard work will help guide the future of the company. Professionals with this job description earn a median salary of $65,900.

Options to Advance

If you are working in the hospitality industry, one of the best ways to take your career to the next level is by earning a higher degree, as we've discussed with online master's degrees. Thus, if you are just starting out in the industry, you should first ensure that you have a bachelor's degree. Then, after you have approximately five years of experience under you belt, you should consider a graduate degree.

With a graduate degree, you can take your career past being a kitchen manager or overseeing a single department in a hotel. You'll could find yourself advanced into upper management of your current location, if not becoming a regional supervisor. One day you might even rise into the C-suites. You will certainly need a graduate degree if you wish to rise that high.

Best Master’s of Science in Hospitality Management (MHM) Programs

  • University of Memphis
    Memphis, TN

    The University of Memphis is home to The Kemmons Wilson School of Hospitality and Resort Management, a top-tier leader in hospitality management education. They offer a Master of Science degree that includes research and data analysis, pricing, marketing, and other management courses.

    Degrees Offered:

    • Master of Science in Sport and Hospitality Management – Hospitality Management Concentration
    • Master of Science in Sport and Hospitality Management – Sport Commerce Concentration
  • Boston University – School of Hospitality Administration
    Boston, MA

    Boston University is among the top schools in Boston, and that says a lot. When you go to school in such a bustling city, you will have ample opportunities to land an educational internship or your first post-graduate job.

    Degrees Offered:

    • Master of Management in Hospitality (MMH)
    • Bachelor's degrees in Hospitality Administration or Hospitality & Communication
  • University of Nevada – Las Vegas / William F. Harrah College of Hospitality
    Las Vegas, NV

    UNLV was one of the pioneers in offering undergrad and graduate degrees in Hospitality. After all, the school is smack-dab in the middle of a town virtually built on the Hospitality industry. Your coursework can be easily augmented by stimulating internships, and then you are sure to land a job without having to uproot to some other city of state.

    Degrees Offered:

    • Master of Science – Hotel Administration
    • Master of Business Administration & Master of Science – Hotel Administration
  • San Ignacio University
    Miami, FL

    School Info – Miami is a town built on hospitality. In fact, the entire state of Florida relies on tourism for its economic health. The graduate school at San Ignacio specializes in Tourism and Restaurant management. Thus, with one of these concentrations you will rise to be a leader in the Hospitality industry.

    Degrees Offered:

    • Master of Arts in Hospitality Management
    • Master of Business Administration
  • Cornell University – SC Johnson School of Business
    Ithaca, NY

    School Info – This AACSB accredited degree is sure to be recognized all over the world. If you have plans to open your own hotel or restaurant chain, this MMH program offers a special concentration in entrepreneurship. Though Ithaca isn't a bustling tourist town, your Cornell degree will open doors nationwide.

    Degrees Offered:

    • Master of Management in Hospitality

Traditional Schools Offering an M.S. in Hospitality Management

  • Johnson and Wales
    Providence, RI & Online

    School Info – Johnson and Wales was an early pioneer in culinary instruction in the United States. Now they have branched out to offer graduate degrees in Hospitality, and many other concentrations, too. Thier two-year MBA program, for instance, is comprised of 8-week courses that immerse you in the subject matter.

    Degrees Offered:

    • Master of Business Administration – Hospitality
    • Master of Science – Hospitality Management
  • Monroe College
    Online & New Rochelle, NY

    School Info – This college offers a one-year, online program in Hospitality. The program includes two-week residencies that bookend the program with experiential learning. These residencies are on campus in New Rochelle, NY, a short train ride to NYC.

    Degrees Offered:

    • Master of Science in Hospitality
  • Florida International University – Chaplin School of Hospitality & Tourism Management
    Online & North Miami, FL

    School Info – Who knows hospitality and tourism better than Florida? FIU's Chaplin School offers graduate degrees in as little as 12 months. Your online education will include a practicum as well as a comprehensive suite of courses designed to ensure lifelong success.

    Degrees Offered:

    • Master of Science in Hospitality Management
  • Purdue University Online
    Online & West Lafayette, IN

    School Info – Purdue is one of the most widely recognized institutions of higher learning in our nation. If you are already working in a high-tourism area and want to take your career to the next level, Purdue's online option for Hospitality Management is for you.

    Degrees Offered:

    • Master of Science in Hospitality and Tourism Management
  • University of Central Florida
    Online & Orlando, FL

    School Info – UCF is located in the heart of one of the nation's top tourist destinations – Orlando, FL. Your instructors are sure to be steeped in cutting edge approaches and winning strategies that will give you an edge in your hospitality career.

    Degrees Offered:

    • Master of Science in Hospitality and Tourism Management
    • Event Management – Certificate
    • Hospitality and Tourism Technologies - Certificate

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