View a collection of frequently asked questions about the Hospitality Management program.

At the Hart School, you won’t just gather in classrooms to analyze and discuss things you’ve read in a textbook. You’ll learn by doing. By engaging in powerful, impactful educational experiences outside a traditional classroom setting, you will apply what you have learned to gain knowledge, build lifelong friendships, engage with alumni and mentors, cultivate your personal growth and much more.

Our dynamic experiential offerings are a hallmark of the Hart School student experience. Although they change to accommodate the new circumstances and needs of the community each semester, our own Hotel Madison consistently features hotel, restaurant, convention and event learning that doesn’t require any travel or added expense for students.

Hotel Madison | Study Abroad | Internships | Field Experience | Research Experience for Undergraduates

Hotel Madison and Shenandoah Valley Conference Center

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.

Study Abroad

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.

Internships

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. 

Among your study abroad options are HM specific trips to Australia and Florence, that include internships. 

To learn more check out the internships and practicums page.

Field Experience

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.
Research Experience for Undergrads

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.

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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