Your Hart School education takes you beyond the classroom and gives you the chance to experience learning through action. While the destinations and events change, every semester brings new chances to learn from experts - and by doing. Here are some highlights from two of our frequent field experience trips:

  • Learn about the connections between the grape and the soil and vine in the Napa and Sonoma Wine and Culture course. You’ll meet winery owners and managers while learning about sustainability and tourism and how marketing strategies work nationally.
  • Attend the International Hotel, Motel and Restaurant Show in New York City. This is the worlds’ largest showcase and exchange of industry products, trends and developments, attracting every segment and facet of the industry.

Your experiential learning begins right on campus with the Hotel Madison, regarded as a premier destination for Virginia business and leisure travel. You can gain practical knowledge and a head start in the industry through shadowing employees, manager-in-training programs, internships, working events and research.

The required externship and internship are opportunities to gain valuable work experience that built into your degree in HM. You begin with a 100-hour externship with Aramark as part of the HM 212 course and complete a 400-hour internship through the HM 402 course. After high school but before enrolling in HM 402, a further 600 hours of hospitality work is required to be undertaken on your own initiative. Combined, these 1000 hours of experience give you a valuable edge in your post-graduation career search right from the start. 

To learn more check out the internships and practicums page.

As a future hospitality leader, you’ll need to know how to gather and analyze data to help make the best possible decisions for your clients and company. Our Research Experience for Undergraduates program will help you learn the process of conducting independent research in the business disciplines. 

As an undergraduate research assistant, you’ll make valuable connections with JMU faculty as you collaborate on research topics of mutual interest, learning a wide range of research skills such as reviewing literature, developing surveys, collecting and cleaning data, and analyzing results. These experiences may also give you a competitive edge in applying for graduate school.

For many students, the time spent studying abroad is one of the most significant periods in their academic studies. Long afterward they continue to discover that the immersive experience of another culture pays dividends throughout their lives as they navigate new social and global career environments.

Hospitality Management is a growing industry worldwide. Studying abroad gives you the opportunity to gain cross-cultural skills, see HM within a different culture, and perhaps even study the fundamentals of winemaking in Italy. Through the Center for Global Engagement, you’ll be able to take advantage of specific HM international programs in places including Australia and Florence, Italy.

What our students say...

Natalie Beiro - HM alumna "The Hart School is truly a family. The support and encouragement I received from not only the faculty and staff but from my fellow students gave me the confidence to pursue my goals. These relationships still exist today, years after graduation, and push me towards both personal and professional success."

Natalie (Street) Beiro '12
Sales Manager, Mandarin Orientel Hotel, DC

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