Ocean County College Approves New Degree Program in Hospitality, Recreation and Tourism

Aug 25, 2016

Last year, Ocean County College began offering courses in hospitality, recreation and tourism management. Now, students can earn an associate in science degree in HRTM. The newly approved A.S. degree provides instruction in hotel, travel, recreation, tourism, food and beverage, convention and meeting planning, facilities management and related service industries.

According to Jennifer Evans, HRTM program chair at OCC, this developing industry has a demonstrated need for educated, skilled employees. And, she pointed out, “Ocean County College is centrally located within the beach counties of Ocean, Monmouth and Atlantic counties, and is the gateway to New Jersey tourism, offering tremendous job opportunities for our students.

“With an associate degree from Ocean County College, students can begin working right after graduation or can transfer to a bachelor’s degree program in hospitality, recreation and tourism management at a four-year school.”

An individual pursuing work within the industry, added Evans, is typically a “people person” who craves variety and excitement, and has a passion for food, travel and special events.

According to OCC, “the new associate degree provides a business planning foundation that examines industry trends, consumer behavior, guest services, and other factors that influence HRTM development and promotion. Students will acquire skills in cost control and accounting; customer service management; employee hiring, training, and management; event design and planning; legal and risk management; marketing; and operations procedures. Students will also learn to both provide superior service treating customers as guests and to develop marketing and sales techniques to use within their specific field.”

Potential careers might involve a position with a cruise ship, airline or chartered transportation; a job at a theme or water park, aquarium, zoo, casino, club or museum; or work with a restaurant or managed services such as a dining hall, hospital, winery, brewery or catering. Additionally, careers in lodging feature hotels, motels and resorts, while special event positions involve weddings, conventions, meeting planning, expos, trade shows, sporting events and colleges, and facilities management jobs might mean work at a golf club or gym.

For more information on the new degree program, contact Evans at 732-255-0400, extension 2821, or jevans@ocean.edu. —J.K.-H.

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