Hotel and Restaurant Management

Earn a degree in Hotel and Restaurant Management at Paul Smith’s College to further your path toward the perfect job or career.

Join an academic tradition that’s respected worldwide. Our graduates are sought by prestigious properties around the globe because of the hands-on education and training they receive. In fact, this tradition is even older than the college itself – hospitality has been a hallmark of Paul Smith’s since the property’s original operation as a top-quality resort hotel. Learn how to be an effective supervisor who can oversee a busy team while also making smart business decisions and delivering guest satisfaction:

  • Gain hands-on experience working in one of two on-campus restaurants or in nearby Lake Placid, a world-class resort destination
  • Develop a talent for handling customer relations with integrity, professionalism and teamwork
  • Understand the fundamentals of marketing, business plans and finance
  • Work directly with faculty and industry professionals on management-level projects
  • Develop a competitive edge through semesterlong study abroad opportunities in places such as Germany, Switzerland, Italy, Costa Rica and Ecuador

Students learn the skills and background to enter the field with a leg up on rapid professional development. This associate-degree program also provides a foundation for students who choose to pursue the hotel, resort and tourism management bachelor’s degree.

Key Facts
  • A.A.S. degree
  • 62 credit hours (minimum) required
    • one-third of credits must be in the liberal arts and sciences
  • 400 hours of industry work experience is required
    • 200 hours (minimum) required at each location
    • this is not credit-bearing and there is no tuition fee
Career Options
  • Corporate Events Coordinator
  • Property Manager
  • Hotel Sales
  • Front Office Manager
  • Restaurant Manager
  • Hotel/Resort Events Coordinator
  • Hotel Operations Consultant
  • Food and Beverage Management
  • Director of Housekeeping
Program Objectives

At the end of the program students will be able to:

  • Critical Thinking and Leadership Skills
    • Make rational, logical and creative decisions to confront a variety of challenges
    • Understand data to address management challenges in the areas of marketing, guest services, cost control, and human resource management
    • Recognize and identify financial data and operational reports
    • Plan and conduct group meetings with agenda, outcome goals and post meeting analysis
  • Management and Communication Skills
    • Human Resource Management
      • Understand the industry’s inherent cultural diversity and the variety of issues related to managing a multicultural workforce and providing service for an international clientele
    • Financial Management
      • Understand basic accounting practices and be able to apply industry-specific math applications to actual case studies and develop pricing strategies
      • Apply cost control concepts to develop appropriate systems for the day to- day management and operation of lodging or food service operations
    • Service Delivery Management
      • Utilize management skills for the development, delivery and evaluation of quality guest services
      • Demonstrate knowledge and application of ethical and socially responsible practices
    • Marketing
      • Research and develop a fundamental marketing plan and integrate basic marketing principles into management decisions
      • Develop advertising, promotional and direct sales techniques to the marketing of tourism products and special events
    • Communication
      • Develop and stage high-quality oral presentations to groups, integrating the use of presentation software
      • Express thoughts and opinions clearly through written and oral communication. Apply active listening skills
  • Technical knowledge and skills
    • Industry Background, History & Trends
      • Describe the history and traditions of the hospitality industry, and survey the full range of available career opportunities
      • Recognize current and emerging industry trends.
    • Guest Relations
      • Recognize guest psychology and professional guest service skills that are required during all phases of the guest cycle
      • Apply knowledge of all functional areas involved in the delivery of exceptional guest service
    • Food Services
      • Demonstrate the proper usage and care of common kitchen & dining room equipment
      • Apply knowledge of basic food preparation as it relates to planning, scheduling, production and management.
      • Apply knowledge of proper sanitation & safety procedures for food service and lodging applications.
  • Life skills and work ethic
    • Understand and model the purpose, value and rewards of hard work
    • Understand and have the ability to present an appropriate appearance and decorum in a variety of professional settings ranging from interviews to presentations in the workplace
    • Exhibit self-confidence, initiative and the ability to function effectively as a member of a work group
Required Courses

Program Planning Guide »

  • First semester:  Financial Accounting I; Hotel, Resort and Tourism Industry Orientation
  • Second semester:  Front Office/Property Management; Intro to Food Production; Food Service Sanitation
  • Third or Fourth semester:  Nutrition; Dining Room and Kitchen Operations; Hotel Practicum; Hotel Accounting; Electives


Paul Smith's receives five Best Colleges distinctions, including the No. 1 ranking for Most Innovative Schools. Continue reading »

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