What Are the Best Schools for Tourism and Travel?

Learn how to choose a good school for tourism and travel degree programs. Compare three of the best schools in the country, the degrees each offers as well as other program opportunities for learning. Review a list of ten additional schools that offer degrees in tourism and travel. Schools offering Travel & Tourism degrees can also be found in these popular choices.

What Should I Look for in a School for Tourism and Travel?

When researching schools, you'll probably want to look for those that offer career-enhancing internship opportunities, possibly including international options. You also might look for colleges and universities with related research institutes in hospitality and tourism. Another consideration may be whether a school offers a particular specialization, like sustainable tourism or event management.

What Are Three Top Schools for Tourism and Travel?

George Washington University (GWU) in Washington, D.C.

GWU tied for 57th in U.S. News & World Report's 2015 ranking of national universities. Undergraduate and graduate hospitality management programs are available through GWU's School of Business. As a tourism student, you could take special honors courses, or study abroad at the Paris Study Center. You also would have access to resources of the school's International Institute for Tourism Studies, which provides technical and financial assistance for tourism and hospitality initiatives in developing countries.

The Master of Tourism Administration (MTA) program, available on campus and online, offers specializations in hospitality management, sustainable tourism or event and meeting management, or you could earn a global Master of Business Administration (MBA) with a concentration in tourism or hospitality. The doctoral business administration program also offers tourism and hospitality management as a field of study, and GWU features several post-baccalaureate certificate options in on-campus, distance learning or blended formats. Your full list of program options includes:

  • Event Management Certificate
  • Tourism Destination Management Certificate
  • Bachelor of Business Administration (BBA) in Sport, Event, and Hospitality Management
  • Master of Tourism Administration
  • Global MBA with concentration in Tourism & Hospitality Management
  • Professional MBA with concentration in Tourism
  • Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.) in International Business

New York University (NYU) in New York, NY

In 2015-16, NYU was 19th among U.S. schools in the Academic Ranking of World Universities and was U.S. News & World Report's 32nd-ranked national university. The Preston Robert Tisch Center for Hospitality, Tourism and Sports Management in the School of Continuing and Professional Studies offers bachelor's, master's and certificate programs in hotel and tourism management.

As a hotel and tourism major, you could take advantage of experiential learning opportunities at any of four teaching hotels in NYC, including the Waldorf-Astoria and the Marriott Marquis. You also could spend a semester abroad at one of NYU's academic centers in Europe, Africa, South America or China. Additionally, your experience could be enhanced by taking part in the annual International Hospitality Industry Investment Conference sponsored by the Tisch Center. Tourism and travel programs available at NYU include the following:

  • Bachelor of Science (B.S.) in Hotel and Tourism Management
  • Graduate Certificate in Hospitality Industry Studies
  • Graduate Certificate in Tourism Management
  • Master of Science (M.S.) in Hospitality Industry Studies
  • M.S. in Tourism Management

University of Hawaii (UH) in Manoa

UH ranked in the top 100 among U.S. universities in the 2015-16 Academic Ranking of World Universities. UH's School of Travel Industry Management (TIM) offers programs leading to an online certificate, bachelor's degree or master's degree.

As an undergraduate, you could select an emphasis in hotel and resort management or tourism and transportation management. In the graduate program, you might explore interests in areas like sustainable tourism, Asia-Pacific tourism or electronic commerce. You could also take advantage of the resources of the Center for Tourism Policy Studies. Available programs include:

  • Certificate in Travel Industry Management
  • B.S. in Travel Industry Management
  • M.S. in Travel Industry Management

10 More Schools with Tourism and Hospitality Management Programs

College/University Institution TypeLocation
University of Massachusetts Amherst4-year, PublicAmherst, MA
Michigan State University4-year, PublicEast Lansing, MI
Appalachian State University4-year, PublicBoone, NC
Madonna University4-year, PrivateLivonia, MI
University of Central Missouri4-year, PublicWarrensburg, MO
Iowa State University4-year, PublicAmes, IA
Kansas State University4-year, PublicManhattan, KS
Oklahoma State University- Main Campus4-year, PublicStillwater, OK
University of South Carolina - Columbia4-year, PublicColumbia, SC
Ferris State University4-year, PublicBig Rapids, MI

To continue researching, browse degree options below for course curriculum, prerequisites and financial aid information. Or, learn more about the subject by reading the related articles below:

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