Hotel and Restaurant Schools Directory

Optional certification shows commitment

Some of the most highly trained restaurant and hotel managers still want to prove to prospective employers that they have the right skills. Others who may have less-impressive credentials want to show that it doesn't mean they aren't the best person for the job.

Certification isn't mandatory, but it can give hotel and restaurant manager graduates an edge over the competition. It also indicates that they are dedicated to the profession.

A Foodservice Management Professional (FMP) certification is offered by the National Restaurant Association Educational Foundation. Managers who complete a series of courses, pass an examination and meet work experience standards are given the certification. This is just one example (you should check into it and any others before going through the process). Some schools might offer their own form of certification upon course completion.

Questions to consider

  • Does the program offer real-world experience? Some schools arrange for their students to work in the industry, at restaurants, hotels and other eating or lodging establishments. Employers tend to prefer graduates who have practical experience. Some culinary schools allow the students to run an on-campus restaurant where they take turns doing a number of tasks.
  • Is the education comprehensive enough to get you the job you want? Some courses focus on different areas of hotel and restaurant management, so you'll want to make sure the program you choose includes subject areas you find important.
  • Are credits transferable? If the program offers a diploma you may decide part-way through or after graduation that you'd rather complete a degree. Some hotel and restaurant schools will have agreements with colleges or universities that allow students to transfer the credits they've earned.
  • Is the faculty qualified? It's a good idea to look into the credentials of instructors for restaurant and hotel management schools. Educational institutions should be proud of their faculty and offer information without you even having to ask. If the information is nowhere to be found, don't be afraid to inquire.