Hospitality Administration at HBCUs: Changing Attitudes and Dispelling Myths

Article excerpt

Hospitality Administration at HBCUs: Changing Attitudes and Dispelling. Myths

Travel and tourism has become the world's largest industry.

According to the U.S. Travel Data Center, employment in the travel industry is projected to grow more than 30 percent in the next decade. This means that 150 million jobs will be created. By 2005, growth in hospitality will exceed all other industries. As a result, the next 15 years will present numerous opportunities for African Americans. How can we take advantage of them?

First, we, as African Americans, need to change our views of the hospitality industry. Misperceptions about hospitality administration need to be transformed. Our history of servitude in this country may help explain our students' lack of interest in hospitality administration/management professions.

The times have changed. The hospitality industry now provides a broad range of opportunities for our community, and should be weighed as a career option. It is imperative that hospitality administration/management programs at historically Black colleges and universities (HBCUs) promote careers in the hospitality, travel and tourism fields.

Second, myths about careers in hospitality administration/management being confined to food services, wait staff, and dishwashers must be changed. There needs to be a greater understanding about the new opportunities now available in the industry.

The numerous career choices that should be looked into include: night auditor; controller; food and beverage director; general manager; conference and convention planner for hotels, cities, state and federal governments; architect for hospitality venues; special events coordinators; hospitality lawyer; occupational and safety engineer; and hospitality medicine. …

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