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Hospitality Schools in San Francisco, CA with Degree Overviews

The San Francisco, California, area has four schools that offer hospitality programs. Learn about the degree programs, admission info, and program requirements for three schools within 35 miles of downtown and make an informed education decision.

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San Francisco, California, Hospitality Schools

The San Francisco area offers students a choice of schools and programs in hospitality management. This article examines three schools, none more than 40 minutes from the city center, and the hospitality-related programs they offer. There is also a table of pertinent information about the schools, such as school type, enrollment, tuition and graduation rates. This is information that can be useful to individuals who are considering which school to attend. At the end of the article is a list of some other area schools with relevant programs.

  • The University of San Francisco (USF) is a private, Jesuit school just 1.5 miles from the downtown area and features a bachelor's degree program and a minor in the field.
  • Students can also pursue a bachelor's degree or minor in hospitality at San Francisco State University, which is about five miles from downtown. This school also offers a certificate program in hospitality and tourism management.
  • At California State University - East Bay, about 22 miles from downtown San Francisco in Hayward, students can earn bachelor's and master's degrees in fields including hospitality, leisure, and recreation studies. They can also minor in hospitality and tourism.

Comparison of Schools

Prospective students need to be aware of many facts about the schools they are considering. This table makes it simple to compare these three institutions in various areas.

University of San Francisco San Francisco State University California State University - East Bay
School Type 4-year; private, non-profit 4-year, public 4-year, public
Total Enrollment (2017) 11,063* 29,758* 16,538*
Campus Setting Large city Large city Midsize city
Undergraduate Tuition and Fees (2017-2018) $46,250* $7,254 in-state;
$19,134 out-of-state*
$6,834 in-state; $18,714 out-of-state*
% of First-Year Students Receiving Any Form of Aid (2016-2017) 83%* 77%* 79%*
Undergraduate Acceptance Rate (2017) 66%* 70%* 74%*
Retention Rate for First-Time Students (2016-2017) 85% full-time;
33% part-time*
81% full-time;
52% part-time*
75% full-time;
50% part-time*
Undergraduate Graduation Rate (Students began in 2011) 77% (13% transfer-out rate)* 54% (7% transfer-out rate)* 42% (3% transfer-out rate)*

Source: *NCES College Navigator

University of San Francisco

USF opened as a Jesuit school in 1855 with just three students. It survived earthquakes and fires, and gradually expanded into a 55-acre main campus with four branch campuses. Among USF's five schools is the School of Management, which features studies in hospitality management through the business administration program.

Minor in Hospitality Management

USF offers non-business students an opportunity to learn about hospitality industry management. This minor requires the completion of 21 core credits in courses such as accounting and organizational dynamics. Specialized courses provide training in beverage management, restaurant management, culinary arts, and revenue optimization.

Bachelor of Science in Business Administration - Hospitality Management

Participants in this program fulfill core requirements in business studies, including micro- and macroeconomics, accounting, business analysis, finance, and business strategy. They also select from among several 20-credit majors, including hospital industry management. Courses in this major explore the hospitality industry, food-service, and how to optimize revenue. Students can focus on meetings and events, where they learn about planning, project management, and venues. An alternate focus is hotel and restaurant management, which provides training in hotel operations, culinary skills, and management of food and beverages. To graduate, students must complete a two-part industry experience.

San Francisco State University

San Francisco State University was founded in 1899 as a teacher training school. Today, it offers bachelor's programs in 124 areas, as well as master's and doctoral degrees. Undergraduate studies include accounting, art, biology, business administration, chemistry, English, and environmental studies. A bachelor's degree, a minor, and a certificate in hospitality and tourism management are also available.

Certificate in Hospitality and Tourism Management

Students can earn this 24-credit certificate by taking nine courses that include learning about Asian and California food, wine, and culture, as well as leisure, business, and international travel and tourism. A management internship is included. The certificate is offered through the College of Extended Learning.

Minor in Hospitality and Tourism Management

A minor in hospitality and tourism management is available to non-hospitality majors and business students who want a second focus. The program requires students to complete a minimum of 24 units in hospitality courses, exploring hotel operations management, food service, marketing, organizational behavior, human resource management, and accounting. Participants also select two electives, chosen from among the concentrations outlined below.

Bachelor of Science in Hospitality and Tourism Management

This 120-unit bachelor's degree program combines a business foundation with professional hospitality training. Required courses explore topics such as hospitality and tourism management, restaurant and catering management, financial accounting, business statistics, business finance, and marketing. Students also have the chance to pursue a special interest through an interdisciplinary concentration. Options include hotel operations management, restaurant and catering management, international tourism, event management, hospitality labor relations, and hospitality entrepreneurship.

California State University - East Bay

With two campuses and a professional center, California State University - East Bay offers more than 100 fields of study through both undergraduate and graduate programs. The Department of Hospitality, Recreation, and Tourism awards a bachelor's degree and a minor in hospitality and tourism and a master's degree in recreation and tourism.

Minor in Hospitality and Tourism

Students may select hospitality and tourism as a minor; 24 units of study are required. Courses include lodging management, hospitality law, food and beverage management, resort management, menu planning, and event leadership.

Bachelor of Science in Hospitality and Tourism

Students must complete 120 units in hospitality and tourism, along with the university's core requirements. The comprehensive curriculum includes an introduction to hospitality and tourism, recreation, philosophy of leisure, computers in hospitality, finance, leadership, and special events management. Specialized training examines lodging management, hospitality law, food and beverage management, business communication, and the dimensions of tourism. Students also participate in a 400-hour internship. This program is offered online.

Master of Science in Recreation and Tourism

This program is presented fully online and requires 30 units to graduate; it must be completed within five years. Applicants must have a bachelor's degree in recreation or hospitality and two years of related work experience. Students delve into hospitality fiscal management, advanced marketing, organizational development, and strategic leadership. Students also complete a two-part research project.

Other School Options

Diablo Valley College, a 2-year school located about 30 miles from downtown San Francisco, offers students an opportunity to study hospitality management. In addition, Napa Valley College and San Jose State University are within a 50-mile radius of the city and offer programs in hospitality.

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