Top Schools for Catering and Restaurant Management

Catering/restaurant management or hospitality programs are available from a number of top-ranked schools. Here we'll see ten of the best schools that offer restaurant and food management or catering programs to provide students with the education, skills, and hands-on opportunities they'll need for their future careers.

School Information

Formal instruction in catering and restaurant management can often be found through hospitality programs, which typically include courses in business and culinary arts, as well as field and internship experiences. Relevant programs can be found at the four featured schools below, which include Johnson and Wales University, Paul Smith's College of Arts and Science, the University of Denver, and Boston University—all professionally ranked.

Johnson and Wales University in Providence, RI

School Highlight:Johnson and Wales University's Food Service Entrepreneurship program teaches 2-year cooking or baking students how to manage their own restaurants.

Johnson and Wales University (JWU) is a 4-year private school that tied for the 67th-best regional university in the North by U.S. News & World Report for 2017. The university offers a bachelor's degree in restaurant, food and beverage management, as well as programs that combine food service management with either culinary arts or baking and pastry arts. Graduate students can pursue a Master of Business Administration (MBA) with a concentration in hospitality. In addition to its Providence location, JWU has campuses in Charlotte, Denver and Miami.

Paul Smith's College of Arts and Science in Paul Smiths, NY

School Highlight:The Campus at Paul Smith's College of Arts and Science includes two restaurants, six kitchen labs and a bakery.

Paul Smith's College of Arts and Science is a 4-year private institution that U.S. News & World Report tied for the 31th-best regional college in the North for 2017. Located within New York's Adirondack Park, the school offers a Bachelor of Professional Studies in Culinary Arts and Service Management. In addition to facilities design and operations, cooking and wine studies, students learn about advertising, promotion and financial accounting. The college also offers a 2-year associate's program in hotel and restaurant management that includes training in beverage and table service, human resource management, managerial accounting and food production.

University of Denver in Denver, CO

School Highlight:The University of Denver's Backpacks-to-Briefcases program prepares business students for transition from college to the workforce.

The University of Denver (DU) is a 4-year private school that U.S. News & World Report tied 86th on its list of national universities for 2017. Through DU's Daniels College of Business, students can earn a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration with a major in hospitality management. To graduate, all hospitality management students must study abroad for at least one quarter.

Boston University in Boston, MA

School Highlight: Internship opportunities in Australia, China and New Zealand, as well as a number of European countries

Boston University, a full-term private institution, is tied for 39th place on the list of best national colleges for 2017, per U.S. News & World Report. The school offers an accelerated degree program in Hospitality Administration/MLA in Gastronomy, and a B.S. in Hospitality Administration. Concentrations in marketing or event management are available. In addition to discipline-specific curricula for the bachelor's degree, courses in writing, research, and analysis are also taken. The 4+1 program provides work experience through internships.

Top Schools for Catering and Restaurant Management

Here are some other top programs in the culinary management field:

  • Ohio State University of Columbus, OH, has a hospitality and management curriculum that includes courses in food production and management, menu planning, marketing and purchasing.
  • Pennsylvania State University in University Park, PA, offers bachelor's, master's and Ph.D. programs in hotel, restaurant and industrial management.
  • Purdue University in West Lafayette, IN, hosts an Annual Black Tie Dinner for 200 guests that showcases students' catering and restaurant management skills.
  • SUNY College of Agriculture and Technology at Cobleskill, in Cobleskill, NY, gives working students the chance to earn a degree through the Weekend College program.
  • The University of Illinois at Urbana, in Champaign, IL, is consistently ranked as a top program by the Gourman Report.
  • The University of Nevada in Las Vegas, NV, lets aspiring caterers run events at the Stan Fulton Building.

As we've just observed, these are some top schools that provide programs in catering, restaurant, or hospitality management. Chances to study abroad, a range of award options, or a varied curriculum are common to all these programs.

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