School and Ranking Information
Atlanta-area students seeking a degree in hospitality management have six school options within 30 miles. The three top schools, based on program offerings, school rankings, and number of hospitality degrees awarded, are listed below; all three hold accreditation from the Southern Association of Schools and Colleges.
- Winner: Georgia State University (GSU) takes the top spot since it is the only one of these schools to be nationally ranked and offer bachelor's and master's degree programs in hospitality.
- Runner Up #1: Gwinnett Technical College (GTC), a short 28-mile drive from downtown Atlanta, takes second place for its wide range of hospitality program options. It offer an associates' degree in hospitality management as well as 1- and 2-year certificate programs in a range of hospitality sub-specialties, such as front desk manager or event planner.
- Runner Up #2: Atlanta Technical College (ATC) also offers an associates' degree in hospitality management and 1- and 2-year certificate programs, but it takes third place since it had the lowest number of degrees awarded.
School Comparison Chart
|Category||Georgia State University||Gwinnett Technical College||Atlanta Technical College|
|Ranking||U.S. News & World Report's 2014 #47 Best National Undergraduate Business Program*||#13 of Community College Week 2013 Top 100 1-Year Certificate Programs 2013***||#45 of Community College Week 2013 Top 100 1-Year Certificate Programs 2013 ***|
|Location||Atlanta, GA||Lawrenceville, GA (28.3 miles from Atlanta)||Atlanta, GA|
|School Type||4-year public||2-year public||2-year public|
|Tuition 2012-2013||$8,157 (undergraduate in-state),
$22,725 (undergraduate out-of-state),
$8,176 (graduate in-state),
$23,728 (graduate out-of-state)**
|$2,434 (in-state), $4,354 (out-of-state)**||$2,242 (in-state), $4,162 (out-of-state)**|
|Degree Levels Offered||Bachelor's and master's degrees||Certificates and associates degrees||Certificates and associates degrees|
|Degrees Awarded (All Levels) in 2011-2012||71**||64**||12**|
|Most Popular in 2011-2012||Bachelors in Hospitality Administration/Management, General (71 awarded)**||Certificate in Hospitality Administration/Management, General (39 awarded)**||Certificate in Hospitality Administration/Management, General (4 awarded)**|
|Graduation Rate (in 150% of normal program time)||51% 2006 Entering Class (17% transfer-out rate)**||17% 2009 Entering Class**||23% 2009 Entering Class**|
|Noteworthy||The Robinson College of Business is accredited by the Association for the Advancement of Schools and Colleges of Business (AACSB).||A GTC degree comes with a warranty from the Georgia Department of Technical and Adult Education.||The Department also guarantees degrees from ATC.|
Sources: *U.S. News & World Report, **NCES College Navigator, ***Community College Week
Winner: Georgia State University
- The hospitality management program is accredited by the Accreditation Commission for Programs in Hospitality Administration.
- The program also holds accreditation from the International Council on Hotel, Restaurant and Institutional Education.
- Students have the opportunity to learn about the hospitality industry in Europe through a unique study-abroad opportunity.
At Georgia State you will study for a bachelor of business administration (BBA) degree with a major in hospitality management. Required courses will introduce you to the concepts and skills necessary to manage a hotel, restaurant, event facility or private club; additional course work enables you to specialize in the management of one of these venues. You will learn budgeting and financial analysis, human resources and marketing principles, as well as food production and safety, interpersonal skills and the ethical underpinnings of the hospitality industry. In addition, you will also complete general education courses and a work-study experience in a hotel or other facility. For students already possessing a bachelor's degree, the university also offers a one-year certificate program in hospitality management and a fast-track master's degree in global hospitality. The hospitality management program at GSU is highly regarded by U.S. News and other industry-related associations. For students interested in career preparation at the baccalaureate level, GSU is the top choice in the Atlanta area.
Runner-Up #1: Gwinnett Technical College
- Students have extra-curricular opportunities to hone their leadership skills through the Hospitality and Educational Leadership Program.
- GTC has numerous articulation agreements with 4-year colleges and universities, which means your course work will be accepted for credit by those institutions participating in the agreement.
The most popular hospitality management program at Gwinnett Technical College is the 2-semester (15 credits) certificate program for hotel management specialist. However, you should be aware that this program's compact nature means you're not eligible for financial aid. You also have the options of pursuing either a 3-semester certificate (or diploma) or a 4-semester associate's degree. Your decision among the three should take into account whether you believe you might someday wish to pursue a bachelor's degree--in which case, the associate's program might be best for you. The core course work for all options is the same: you will take courses in hotel operations, marketing and law as well as event planning. In addition, for a diploma you will add courses in computing, food and beverage management and travel industry subjects. You will also enroll in an internship, basic communications and mathematics courses and complete several additional requirements. Finally, for the associate's degree you will add in courses in general education. GTC is located in Lawrenceville, a suburb near Atlanta; enrollment mirrors the broad diversity of the city in which it is located.
Runner-Up #2: Atlanta Technical College
- ATC has a student-exchange agreement with Felix-Fechenbach Technical College in Detmold, Germany.
- ATC's Institute for Males provides support services to help at-risk young males succeed at the college.
- A conference center and restaurant are located on campus.
While ATC's certificate, diploma, and associate's degree programs enroll fewer students than those of GTC, the curriculum at the Atlanta-based college is essentially identical at all levels. This is not a bad thing--it reflects the requirements of the Georgia Department of Technical and Adult Education, which establishes mandatory learning goals for programs offered in the state's public institutions. Students have such on-campus resources as Flavors Restaurant and the Dennard Conference Center in which to hone their skills. Of special interest to some students is ATC's Institute for Males, which is designed to help male students familiarize themselves with the college environment and help them learn the habits of mind that lead to success in college. ATC is located in the city of Atlanta. Its enrollment, however, is not nearly as diverse as the city itself.