Hospitality and Tourism Management Major

The Department of Hospitality and Tourism Management (HTM) at Grand Valley State University (GVSU) offers a practical, management-oriented program that seeks to integrate theory with experience. The program was established in 1977 in response to the need for professionally trained managers. The HTM program offers a Bachelor of Science degree with career concentrations in the following areas: Food and Beverage Management, Lodging Management, Meeting and Event Management, Recreation and Leisure Management, and Tourism Management.  Our program also builds upon Grand Valley's tradition of a liberal arts orientation. More information on the Bachelor of Science in Hospitality and Tourism Management can be found in the University Catalog.

We are dedicated to personal attention to students, professionalism, and practical application.  HTM students complete 1000 hours of industry work in the form of internships, are expected to display excellent written and oral communication skills, and a high degree of professionalism.

Our program includes international, transfer, non-traditional, and out-of-state students, as well as those from all over the state of Michigan.  With vibrant student organizations, majors have the opportunity to interact professionally and socially with their fellow students, the faculty, and industry experts.

Why Study Hospitality and Tourism Management at Grand Valley?

Hospitality and tourism management (HTM) is a very dynamic sector of the service industry encompassing a wide variety of career opportunities that include lodging, food and beverage, recreation, club management, resort operations, travel, tourism, and event management.

Hospitality and tourism management students can expect the following:

  • A curriculum which reflects contemporary industry concepts and best practice.
  • Classes taught by experienced faculty members with academic and industry experience.
  • An engaging learning environment where theoretical concepts are applied to the practice of industry.
  • Individual faculty members mentoring where your career goals are at the heart of curriculum planning decisions.
  • Experiential learning opportunities facilitated through a structured internship program.
  • Networking opportunities with faculty, peers, alumni, professional organizations, and industry stakeholders.

Other related activities include class trips to vineyards, food production operations, hotel and convention center tours, faculty-led experiences such as attending the Munising Ice Festival, and other events.  For example, the department has sponsored a number of students to accompany Assistant Professor Scott Rood to the Resort and Commercial Recreation Association (RCRA) conference (sponsorship assisting the costs of  their flights, accommodation, conference fees).  All these activities are designed to embrace our 'applied teaching and learning philosophy'.

This is just a sample of the many activities one can engage in.  We encourage student participation as a way of enhancing educational development.

HTM 323 Students Working at ArtPrize 2017.

HTM 323 (Festival and Special Event Management) students get first-hand, real world experience working a large-scale festival each semester. Here are HTM 323 students working at ArtPrize 9 in downtown Grand Rapids during the Fall 2017 semester.

HTM Career Concentrations

(for students beginning at GVSU under the Fall 2019 catalog or later)

The HTM Program requires the completion of TWO (2) Career Concentrations with each concentration requiring nine (9) credit hours of coursework. Each concentration offers course electives relative to a specific career path in Hospitality and Tourism Management. Please explore the HTM Career Concentrations, and connect with faculty mentors to discuss your interests.

Please note that it is important for students to connect with their CCPS Advisor to ensure they are completing their concentrations and all degree requirements correctly.

Food and Beverage Management

Lodging Management

Meeting and Event Management

Recreation and Leisure Management

Tourism Management

Notice: A sixth, customizable career concentration is available. Students interested in creating a customized concentration will need to meet with Dr. Kristen Jack for approval.

Key People

Department Chair:
Scott Rood

Internship Coordinator:
Amanda Stansbie

GVSU Career Center Contact:
Lori Staggs and Megan Riksen

Library Liaison: Sheila Garcia

CCPS Academic Advising

The College of Community and Public Service (CCPS) Academic Advising Center is a collaborative partnership between students, faculty, and staff committed to developing meaningful educational plans aligned with students' values, goals, and interests.

HTM Academic Advisor: 
Renica Minott

CCPS Academic Advising Center
Grand Valley State University
401 W. Fulton St., 321C Richard M. DeVos Center
Grand Rapids, MI 49401
616.331.6890 |

Degree Planning. Goal Setting.

Employment Outlook and Career Advice

Connect Early, Connect Often

Make regular appointments with your faculty mentor and with a Career Center advisor to discuss your post-graduation plans.  

Keep in mind that your internship experience is a prime opportunity to build your professional network and gain marketable skills.

HTM Career Guide

The mega HTM industry encompasses a variety of career pathways including:

  • Restaurants
  • Clubs 
  • Resorts 
  • Corporate Dining Accounts 
  • Airlines 
  • Cruise Lines 
  • Vacation Ownership Resorts
  • Catering Businesses 
  • Country Club Management 
  • Conventions and Visitors Bureaus
  • Hotel Sales Departments
  • Convention and Conference Centers

Many of our alumni are employed in Business/Management, Entrepreneurship and Sales careers.

See where some of our alums are currently employed!

Program Transparency

Graduation Rates:

  • 76.2% students graduate within 6 years of declaring a Hospitality and Tourism Management major.
  • 4.4 years is the average time to graduation for Hospitality and Tourism Management majors who started as freshmen at GVSU.
  • 2.9 years is the average time to graduation for Hospitality and Tourism Management majors who transferred to GVSU.

Class Size:

  • 22 students is the average class size for both upper and lower division HTM courses (2018/19 reporting)


  • 98.6% of recent graduates are successfully employed either full or part-time.
  • 1.4%  of recent graduates are in graduate school.

Student Learning Outcomes:

Student Body Profile:

HTM majors at time of graduation, August 2013 to April 2019

  • Total graduates: 746
  • Age under 25: 93%
  • Age 25+: 7%
  • Female: 84%
  • Male: 16%
  • White: 85%
  • African-American/Black: 7%
  • Hispanic: 4%
  • Asian: 4%
  • Mixed-race: 0%
  • Foreign citizen: 1.1%
  • Transfer students: 19%

Recent GVSU HTM Alumni

Alica Arnold, 2014 GVSU HTM Alum

Alica Arnold, '14, CTA
Donor Relations & Special Events Coordinator
Mercy Health Saint Mary's Foundation
Grand Rapids, MI

Megan Boler, 2018 GVSU HTM Alum

Megan Bolger, '18
Bushie's Kitchen, LLC.
Grand Rapids, MI

Amber Cullison, 2014 GVSU HTM Alum

Amber Cullison, '14
Communications Manager for Design, Strategy + Delivery, the Americas
Marriott International
Bethesda, MD

Jaclyn DiPiazza, 2016 GVSU HTM Alum

Jaclyn DiPiazza, '16
Director of Events, Marketing & Membership
Blythefield Country Club, Home of the Meijer LPGA Classic
Belmont, MI

Rachel Nowicki, 2015 GVSU HTM Alum

Rachel Nowicki, '15
Travel and Logistics Manager
Bedrock Ventures
Detroit, MI

Molly Whatley, 2016 GVSU HTM Alum

Molly Whatley, '16
Total Event Resources
Schaumburg, IL