Students in the hospitality lab

About Hospitality and Tourism

Divided into five major service segments: food, lodging, recreation, travel, and convention/meeting, hospitality is a rapidly expanding industry with plenty of opportunities. It’s no wonder why hospitality administration is one of the most popular majors among undergraduate students. 

Buffalo State’s hospitality administration program prepares graduates for management positions in various aspects of the hospitality industry. The department’s mission is to educate and develop proven hospitality professionals by integrating a strong core curriculum with a deliberate emphasis on experiential learning. The department is defined by its extraordinary focus on student development and is firmly grounded in producing graduates that excel in communication, teamwork, professionalism, and problem-solving.

Hospitality Administration, B.S.

Hospitality Administration, Minor

Degree Information

While most hospitality administration graduates do find employment managing and directing hotels, applications can also extend to the travel, tourism, restaurant, and housing management industries. There are many other career options with this degree. Also, if you have a love for a particular language or country, a hospitality administration major may enable you to live and work in that country more than a foreign language major would.

Common hospitality administration job titles: 

  • Banquet Manager
  • Caterer 
  • Casino/Gaming Manager
  • Concierge
  • Club Manager
  • Director of Hotel Sales
  • Flight Attendant 
  • Front Desk Agent
  • Group Sales Manager
  • Guest Services Manager
  • Meeting Coordinator
  • Personal Chef 
  • Real Estate Agent (Vacation) 
  • Restaurant Manager
  • Reservations Agent
  • Resort Director/Manager
  • Room Service Manager
  • Transportation Coordinator
  • Travel Agent 
  • Tour Guide 
  • Wedding Coordinator
  • Wedding Sales Manager

Recent Graduates: Ninety percent of our majors are employed in the field or have enrolled in a graduate program soon after graduation. Recent graduates have taken positions at several local institutions: 

  • AAA of Western and Central New York
  • Ballantyne Resort
  • Buffalo Chop House
  • Buffalo Hotel Supply Co.
  • Buffalo Marriott Niagara
  • Campus House at Buffalo State
  • Courtyard by Marriott
  • Darden Restaurants
  • Delaware North
  • Erie Community College
  • Four Seasons Hotels and Resorts
  • Garden Place Hotel
  • Hampton Inn and Suites
  • Hyatt Hotels and Resorts
  • La Quinta Inn and Suites
  • The Mansion 
  • Niagara Falls Country Club
  • Ritz-Carlton Hotel
  • Seneca Niagara Casino
  • Sodexho
  • Sysco Food Services
  • Wegmans

Campus House: Campus House is a state-of-the-art training facility that is also a restaurant open for lunch, happy hour, and special events for faculty, staff, and alumni. Hospitality students earn academic credit as they create original menus, work in an open kitchen, and manage marketing and event promotions.  

Hotel Henry Urban Resort and Conference Center:  Located in the iconic Richardson Olmsted Complex, Hotel Henry provides real-world experience for Buffalo State hospitality and tourism upperclassmen. They work with guests in the 88-bed hotel and handle food service in the adjoining restaurant, 100 Acres: The Kitchens at Hotel Henry.  

Club Managers Association of America:  The Buffalo State chapter of CMAA provides educational and professional development, networking, fellowship and contacts with nearby club managers, and participation in various social and civic activities. 

National Society of Minorities in Hospitality (NSMH): This national organization is the premier professional organization for hospitality students. It addresses diversity and multiculturalism, as well as the career development of our student members.  

Eta Sigma Delta (ESD): The international honor society for students in hospitality management recognizes hospitality and tourism students for outstanding academic achievement, meritorious service and demonstrated professionalism.

The hospitality and tourism program has a focus on active learning. Majors learn at Campus House, through courses like catering management, event management, training, etc., as well as in the new partnership with Hotel Henry. The department sponsors an annual study abroad experience every spring recess and many of those participants complete research related to cultural tourism.  

Hospitality and tourism majors are required to complete 400 hours of hospitality-related industry experience prior to graduation. Many excellent internship opportunities are available in the Buffalo-Niagara region, other parts of the United States, and abroad as part of the International Student Exchange Program.

Recent Internship Opportunities

  • AAA of Western and Central New York
  • Adam's Mark Hotels and Resorts
  • Aramark
  • Brookfield Golf and Country Club
  • The Buffalo Club
  • Buffalo Niagara Convention & Visitors Bureau
  • Caffé Aroma
  • Delaware North
  • Hampton Inn
  • Harry's Harbour Place Grille
  • Hershey Park (Hershey, Pennsylvania)
  • Holiday Inn Hotels and Resorts
  • Hyatt Hotels and Resorts
  • The Mansion on Delaware Avenue
  • Marriott International
  • Park Country Club of Buffalo
  • Radisson Hotels and Resorts
  • Red Lobster Restaurants
  • Rich Products
  • Seasons Day Spa
  • Transit Valley Country Club
  • Walt Disney World College Program

"I toured the campus, saw what the Hospitality and Tourism Department offers, and thought it was the right fit.”

Largest in SUNY

Ours is the largest accredited four-year hospitality program in the State University of New York (SUNY) system.
 

Special Accreditation

The Buffalo State program is accredited by the Accreditation Commission for Programs in Hospitality Administration (ACPHA). Fewer than 20 percent of all four-year hospitality programs are ACPHA-accredited.

Diverse Options

Students can choose between three concentrations:

  • Restaurant and institutional management
  • Hotel tourism management
  • Culinary arts. 

Faculty

Many of our faculty members have professional experiences in management and leadership in restaurants, private clubs, hotels, and tourism organizations.

Professional Certification

Students can receive professional certification through:

  • American Culinary Federation
  • American Hotel and Lodging Educational Institute
  • National Restaurant Association Educational Foundation, and Training for Intervention Procedures (TIPS).

Departmental Advisory Board

Students benefit from a department advisory board consisting of professional chefs, restaurant owners, casino owners, country club and hotel managers.

The Advisory Board

Real-life Experience

Students can work in two real-world environments as part of their coursework: Campus House, an on-campus dining club, and Hotel Henry, a boutique hotel with accompanying restaurant located across the street from campus. 

Campus House

Hotel Henry

Scholarships

The department is supported by the Statler Foundation, which provides a number of scholarships to our majors. Local hospitality leaders, as well as the department itself, also provide annual awards. And the New York Restaurant Association, The New York State Hospitality and Tourism Association, and the New York State Club Managers Association of America have scholarships available.

"We reflect on the notion that the possibilities of the future are limitless and expect that our applied-learning experiences will strengthen our students’ engagement in the community.”

- Kathleen O'Brien
Chair and Lecturer, Hospitality and Tourism

Kathleen O'Brien

“There is a business behind what we do. And it’s learning the business end of hospitality that I’ve gotten from Buffalo State.”

- Matt Jendrasik Alumni

“Buffalo is a good place for someone in tourism...You’ve got everything—sports, cultural attractions, shopping, restaurants, and nice people.”

- Chenchen Huang Faculty