October 28, 2022

If the complexities of going back to school for your hospitality degree make you want to bury your head under your pillow, you’re in the right place. Uprooting your life, quitting your job, shuffling childcare—it might sound like enough to make you want to quit before you even start.

But with a reliable internet connection and a bit of planning, studying hospitality online is possible. Is it worth it? Keep reading…and find out how you could take steps toward your dream career without relocating or commuting.

1. A Hospitality Degree Can Prepare You for a Wide Variety of Positions

Where could a hospitality career take you?

Perhaps you’d like to be a hotel or lodging manager in a tropical resort. Or maybe you want to run a chic restaurant in Los Angeles for the Hollywood glitterati.

Are you in love with love? Your future may involve wedding or event planning. Or if you’re wild to see the world and help others to do the same, perhaps you would make a wonderful travel agent.

Long wooden banquet table decorated with candles and flowers outside

A hospitality graduate could get into wedding planning, creating lovely tablescapes like this!

At Escoffier, our Hospitality & Restaurant Operations Management degree program includes coursework to prepare students to work in any of these roles. Training in leadership, professionalism, and communications can help with the interpersonal aspects of the work, while courses like Menu Design & Management, Facilities Operations & Compliance, and Catering & Event Operations can dig into some of the specifics unique to the hospitality industry.

Chef Maria Davenport”Escoffier [hospitality management] graduates can choose from a variety of hospitality establishments. They can work for restaurants, bars, hotels, catering companies, etc. There are a wide range of options for our students.”*
Maria Davenport, Escoffier Hospitality & Restaurant Operations Management Instructor

2. An Online Hospitality Degree Lets You Study From Home—Or Wherever You Happen to Be

One of the biggest obstacles to earning a degree is the disruption it may create in other areas of your life. How can you attend school if the program you want to go to is in New York City and you live in Minnesota? You would have to uproot your entire life, at a great financial and emotional cost.

But what if you could get that same education without leaving The Gopher State? No packing up your life. No first month’s rent/last month’s rent/security deposit to secure a new apartment. No haggling with utility companies to get your internet and electricity hooked up.

Just open your laptop and there’s your class! That’s what you can get with an online education.

Person sitting at a desk typing on a computer

With a reliable internet connection, you can attend school from anywhere.

3. Bring a New Perspective to Hospitality

Many students who choose to take hospitality courses online are starting a second (or even a third) career. This means they’re bringing a different perspective to the industry than, say, someone who has worked in the industry since they were a teenager.

After working in a different field, you may see opportunities that others miss. For example, a former bookkeeper or accountant could spot tax savings or cost-cutting measures. A teacher knows how to command the attention of a room, which could make him or her a genius at running meetings. And a former IT whiz could be a valuable asset when implementing new hotel technology.

A father feeds his child while looking at his laptop in the kitchen

This kind of multi-tasking might be invaluable in hospitality!

Plus, with an online hospitality degree, you could get your education while continuing to work in your previous field. (See the next section…)

4. Get Your Degree Online While Working Full-Time

For many adults, taking a break from work while going back to school isn’t an option. There are bills to pay, like rent or a mortgage, car payments, utilities, insurance, and groceries.

But with an online program, students don’t have to choose between work and school. Escoffier’s online hospitality and restaurant operations management degree is designed to be flexible, allowing students to complete their coursework any time, as long as they meet their program deadlines. So it could be possible to work a full-time schedule and attend school during your free hours.

The Escoffier school week runs from Wednesday through the following Tuesday, giving students the option to spread their work across seven days or to batch the work into a shorter timeframe. The program includes assigned reading and homework assignments, as well as live video sessions. But if those live sessions take place at an inconvenient time, students may choose to watch later replays. This flexibility can make school possible, even when working 40 hours per week or more.

Chef Maria Davenport“A major benefit of studying at Escoffier is the program flexibility. Working students find time to complete their coursework around their schedule. Escoffier has invested in technology to keep students in contact with their Instructors–help is just a text message or phone call away.”*
Maria Davenport, Escoffier Hospitality & Restaurant Operations Management Instructor

5. Help the Industry to Innovate

In the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic, hospitality businesses are looking for ways to innovate and diversify. Restaurants have expanded online ordering and added touch-free technology like tableside QR codes. Hotels have implemented contactless check-in and mobile keys that streamline the arrival process.

At Escoffier, Hospitality & Restaurant Operations Management students can take a course in Operations Technology & Innovation, which can broaden their horizons when it comes to automation and new technology. This topical education could make you a valuable asset as the industry works to modernize and mitigate risk from future disruptions.

Close up of hands using a mobile device to scan a QR code and order a meal

New tech like (QR code menus) is becoming more and more common in hospitality.

6. Build a Diverse Network with Fellow Students From Around the World

When students study in an on-campus school, their classmates are likely to hail from the surrounding areas. But when students study hospitality online, their classmates can come from all over the country and the world.

The people you attend school with may become part of your future professional network. These are the people you can reach out to for career advice and to share your wins. A diverse network of colleagues and friends in a large number of cities, states, and countries could widen your reach when you’re looking for future employment opportunities!

Woman with headphones sitting at a desk waiving to the webcam on the computer

Connect with students from all over on message boards and live videos.

7. Study With Other Adult Learners

Data for online vs. on-campus demographics is sparse. But according to UTEP Connect, the average age of an online undergraduate college student is 32 years old, with 68% of online students already established professionals in their careers.

Hotel manager standing next to a desk in the lobby

An Online Hospitality Degree Could Be The Answer!

A hospitality degree can be within reach, if you know what you’re reaching for. Take the obstacles out of your way by getting your degree online.

With professional instructors, an in-depth curriculum, and a hands-on industry externship to tie it all together, a degree in Hospitality & Restaurant Operations Management can help you bridge the knowledge gap between your present and your future.

Plus, Escoffier’s online program is accredited through our Boulder campus. That means students who apply and qualify may be eligible for federal financial aid. Contact us to talk to a financial advisor and start exploring your options!

Learn more about careers in hospitality and restaurant management with these articles:

*This information may not reflect every student’s experience. Results and outcomes may be based on several factors such as geographical region or previous experience.