• Meeting and Convention Planner
  • Events Manager
  • Guest Service Agent
  • Travel Agent
  • Hotel Manager
  • Cruise Agent
  • Catering Manager

For individuals who

Are passionate about customer service and enriching people's experiences and want to work in a fast-paced environment.

Looking for

Coursework in management, materials, finances, technology and hands-on experience in a hospitality and tourism setting.

To become

  • Restaurant Owner
  • Bed and Breakfast Manager
  • Travel Advisor
  • Tourism Manager
  • Marketing Manager

As the nation’s number one retail employer, the hospitality and tourism industry employs millions of people. The demand for managers continues to grow as the demand for services grows. Along with this demand for services is an increasing emphasis on comfort, convenience and personalized attention. All of these factors increase the need for effective and efficient professionals to manage hospitality operations and lead teams of people.

The Program

We are the only four-year Hospitality and Event Management (HEM) program in North Dakota. The mission of the HEM program is to develop effective and efficient leaders of the hospitality and tourism industry. To achieve this mission, it is our goal that students graduating from the HEM program at NDSU will demonstrate leadership skills by having the following: knowledge of the industry, people management skills, problem solving skills, and a sense of responsibility.

  • Our program incorporates a solid foundation of general education courses vital in developing a well-rounded professional.
  • All students complete a core of fundamental courses on the management of people, materials, finances, technology, and time in a hospitality and tourism setting.
  • Upper-division courses concentrate on project-based, critical evaluation, and production of quality services in hospitality and tourism operations.
  • Students choose professional electives in areas such as food and beverage, professional club management, resorts, and convention and meeting planning. Study tour or study abroad opportunities may also count for professional electives with faculty approval.
  • Students “learn by doing” through our strong emphasis on experiential learning.
  • A 24-credit minor in Business Administration is required with this major. The minor provides a strong business background on which we build depth of knowledge concerning the specifics of marketing and management in the hospitality industry. Students must have an overall grade point average of 2.5 to enroll in the business administration classes.

Student Advisement

A faculty advisor is assigned to work with each student majoring in HEM. The academic advisor helps students set goals for their college work, choose courses and seek meaningful work experiences during their college career.

Work Experience and Internship

The Fargo, Moorhead, and West Fargo area provides many quality hospitality and tourism operations for students to gain work experience. The majority of our students are employed by local businesses while completing their degrees. A three-credit supervised, on-the-job field experience (internship) is required for degree completion. Ideally, students complete the field experience during the summer between their junior and senior years. Placement is determined by the student’s desire for type of operation and preferred geographic location.

Career Opportunities

The HEM program at NDSU provides you with a strong educational background for a variety of career options in the hospitality industry. The starting salary for a graduate in the HEM field can range from $30,000 to $40,000 with great possibility for increase in salary after the completion of management training. Students graduating with industry experience also may start at a higher rate.

Feed your passion and build your career in one of the following areas:

  • Hotels, resorts, and other lodging operations
  • Restaurants, catering, and other food and beverage operations
  • Meetings, conventions, and event planning
  • Travel, tourism, and transportation
  • Theme parks, private clubs, and gaming operations
  • Services sales and marketing


The Hospitality Student Association (HSA) is open to all majors and minors in the program. They meet monthly, bring in industry speakers, tour local operations, plan and undertake study trips, and plan and produce the Food and Wine Show each spring. HSA awards two $500 scholarships each year to deserving members.

Financial Aid and Scholarships

The Office of Financial Aid and Scholarships makes available grants, loans, scholarships and work-study employment. Scholarships are also available through the Department of Apparel, Design, and Hospitality Management. Additionally, several hospitality associations have funds for scholarships, which are awarded by the associations through regional and national competition. Contact the Office of Financial Aid and Scholarships, One Stop or the Department of Apparel, Design, and Hospitality Management for additional information.