Our industry partners return time and again to recruit at RIT because they know our students have real-world experience in addition to classroom smarts. Our co-op program attracts more than 1,900 US-based and global employers giving our students a choice of companies large or small, publicly traded corporations or private ‘mom & pop’ start-ups to consider for co-op positions. Students can choose to do their coops in hotels, restaurants, institutional food service, spas, cruise lines, event management companies, or in consulting firms among others.
The co-op program requires Hospitality and Tourism undergraduate students to complete 30 weeks of paid employment in the industry. The aim of the co-op is to help students make connections between what they learn in the class and the real problems that industry faces. The co-op program ensures hospitality graduates hit the ground running with innovative ideas that will benefit our industry partners.
The co-op program permits students to gain valuable insights about the industry. They also make contacts and are able to network with industry professionals who help clarify students’ career goals. The structured co-op program provides our students a valuable advantage over students from other hospitality programs.
The Hospitality and Tourism Management Department boasts of engaged alumni who help facilitate co-op placement in the hospitality and tourism industry around the world. As a result, our students have experienced real-world work experiences in fun locations and with some of the brightest names in our industry. Our faculty are also very helpful resources in students' co-op searches as many faculty have industry experience and continue to maintain strong relationships with industry partners.
The hospitality and tourism industry supports one in every ten jobs worldwide. Hotels, restaurants, resorts, safaris, cruise lines, airlines, spas, entertainment and theme parks, national parks, visitor and convention bureaus, and transportation are all segments of the hospitality and tourism industry. Our graduates find jobs in any of these segments.
The type of jobs available to HTM graduates include operations or functional jobs. Managers with guest-contact or direct guest-service responsibilities including managers in food service (for example, restaurants, events and catering, institutional food service) or lodging services (for example, hotels, resorts, cruise lines, managed-care facilities) are examples of operations jobs.
Students can also specialize in functional areas like Hotel Development and Asset Management, Finance, Sales and Marketing, Public Relations, Facilities Management, Hospitality Technology, or Human Resource Management. This allows them to find positions within any segment of the hospitality and tourism industry.
A number of related industries such as the retail sector (foods, banking, investment banks), hospitals and managed-care facilities, and vendor companies (such as Ecolab, Oracle) are also destinations for our graduates. The industry is worldwide and provides excellent opportunities for graduates who want to develop an international career.
Some hospitality graduates acquire graduate credentials and join hotel and tourism firms as market researchers, financial analysts, or educational institutions as faculty.
Our undergraduates often find jobs as assistant managers or management trainees in large hotel companies such as Marriott, Hilton, Hyatt, Brinker’s International and similar organizations. Some have also found jobs as managers at independent hotels, Bed and Breakfasts, event management companies or have started their own organizations.
Examples of job titles of our alumni include: Sr. Vice President, President, Owner, Sr. Marketing Manager, Sr. Portfolio Manager, General Manager, Manager - Human Resources Information Systems, F&B Director, Assistant Professor, and similar.