Food and Beverage Management Schools: How to Choose

Managers in the food and beverage industry, also known as hospitality managers, supervise staff members, oversee back-end operations of a restaurant or other food service facilities and ensure that customers receive the best service. Managers in the food and beverage industry frequently have at least an associate's degree in hospitality, business administration or a related field.

Students can receive food and beverage management training at multiple education levels. Tuition can vary greatly for in-state and out-of-state institutions.

Schools With Food and Beverage Management Programs

Schools across the country offer degrees in food and beverage management. Here is a list of some of those schools:

College/University Location Institution Type Degrees Offered Tuition (2015-2016)*
American River College Sacramento, CA 2-year, Public Certificate, Associate's In-state: $1,104; Out-of-state: $7,440
Central New Mexico Community College Albuquerque, NM 2-year, Public Associate's In-state: $1,448; Out-of-state: $6,704
City College of San Francisco San Francisco, CA 2-year, Public Associate's In-state: $1,598; Out-of-state: $7,554
CUNY LaGuardia Community College Long Island City, NY 2-year, Public Associate's In-state: $5,218; Out-of-state: $8,098
Florida State College at Jacksonville Jacksonville, FL 4-year, Public Certificate In-state: $2,830; Out-of-state: $9,944
Harrisburg Area Community College-Harrisburg Harrisburg, PA 2-year, Public Certificate, Associate's In-district: $6,015; In-state: $7,500; Out-of-state: $8,940
Tarrant County College-Southeast Campus Arlington, TX 2-year, Public Associate's In-district: $1,320; In-state: $2,064; Out-of-state: $4,920

Source: *National Center for Education Statistics

School Selection Criteria

Since there are numerous schools that offer different degree options in food and beverage management, it is important to consider the following when choosing a program:

  • Students who wish to pursue a degree in hospitality may want to consider schools that have partnerships with local restaurants where students can gain hands-on experience.
  • Students may also want to look for schools in bigger cities, which naturally offer more opportunities for internships with local businesses and better job prospects after graduation.
  • Aspiring food and beverage managers who want to keep their career options as open as possible should consider schools that offer degree programs with cross-training in the related fields of tourism and recreation, hotel and resort management, event management, and casino and club management.

Associate's Degree Programs

Many community colleges offer a 2-year associate's degree program in hospitality. An associate's degree program generally qualifies graduates to enter the field as an assistant food and beverage manager. These programs will train students in food preparation and safety, basic business management and customer service skills.

There are many options for individuals interested in pursuing a food and beverage management program. Think about the location and cost of different programs before making your final decision.

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