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Scholarships for Hospitality Students

Grants, Student Loans, & Fellowships

With hospitality majors come many career opportunities. Hospitality students can seek jobs in the hotel industry, the food and beverage industry, culinary arts, restaurant management, hospitality management, or hospitality sales and marketing. Regardless the career choice, hospitality students need a good education to pursue their dreams. Therefore, many colleges and universities, as well as hospitality organizations offer financial support for hospitality students.

Types of Scholarships for Hospitality Students

Scholarships are often referred to as ‘free money’ because these awards don’t have to be repaid, giving hospitality students reason to seek them out. Most colleges and universities which offer hospitality programs also offer scholarships to help defray the cost of college expenses. In addition, students can look into hospitality associations which offer financial support as an incentive to encourage students to seek careers in one of the many specialties within the hospitality industry. Here are some examples:

University Scholarships

The College of Business Administration at Central Michigan University in Mt. Pleasant, Michigan, offers hospitality scholarships through its Hospitality Services Administration department. The amounts for all scholarships vary each year. The William Brehm, Sr. Scholarship is awarded to a junior or senior level student pursuing a degree in business administration with a major in Hospitality Services Administration. The Kathryn L. Brown Scholarship is given to full-time students in the Hospitality Services Administration program in their senior year. The LaBelle Management Scholarship is awarded to hospitality students in their junior year who demonstrate strong academic achievements and service potential.

Grand Valley State University in Grand Rapids, Michigan offers several departmental scholarships through its Hospitality and Tourism Management program. The Hospitality and Tourism Management Club scholarship is awarded to club members only. Awards amounted varies by year. The Hyatt Place Grand Rapids/Wyoming Scholarship awards $500 to qualifying hospitality students. The Traverse City Convention & Visitors Bureau Education Foundation Scholarship awards $1,000 to a hospitality student enrolled in the Hospitality and Tourism Management program.

Outside Scholarships

The Hotel & Restaurant Foundation offers hospitality majors four categories of scholarship grants. Category A is offered to students in a two-year degree hospitality program or culinary arts; Category B is for four-year degree-seeking hospitality students; Category C is designated for international students at either a two-year or a four-year hospitality program; and, Category D is dedicated to students in a two-year program who will be enrolling in a four-year hospitality management program. Applicants must submit a short essay, an application, and appear before a group of interviewers.

Hospitality Sales & Marketing Association International (HSMAI) offers hospitality scholarships for students seeking careers in hospitality sales and marketing. The HSMI Foundation Scholarship Program awards up to six merit scholarships to hospitality students specializing in sales and marketing at the graduate and undergraduate level. Award amounts vary each year.

The American Hotel & Lodging Association offers hospitality scholarships to qualifying students. The Rama Scholarship for the American Dream is awarded to an undergraduate or graduate student majoring in hospitality management. Amounts awarded range from $1,000 to $3,000. The Pepsi Scholarship is given to a graduate of Hospitality High School in Washington, D.C. who is planning to pursue a degree in hospitality management. Student must show proof of 250 hours of work experience in the hospitality industry. Amount awarded ranges from $500 to $3,000. The Ecolab Scholarship offers $2,000 to hospitality majors committed to the hotel industry who are pursuing a bachelor’s degree. Another scholarship is awarded to a hospitality student in the amount of $1,000 who is pursuing an associate’s degree.

Scholarships Tips for Hospitality Majors

  • Do your homework. With hospitality majors comes a variety of specialties to consider. Speak with departmental staff, professors, and other students to help guide your decision. This will help with your scholarship search.
  • Check for departmental scholarship opportunities by speaking to department staff. The hospitality department may fall under another school, college or department, such as business.
  • Don’t rule out the financial aid office. This is where you can also find general scholarships to add to your financial aid package.
  • Seek outside scholarships using the Internet. Many hospitality associations offer financial support to qualifying students within a variety of hospitality specialties.
  • Know your deadlines! The most important rule of thumb is noting your scholarship requirements and deadlines so that you submit all documents in time for consideration.

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