Start with a premier bachelor’s degree from the acknowledged leader in hospitality education, proven industry knowledge and skills, and the confidence to lead in business. Add expert career guidance and resources, a far-reaching network of industry influencers, and the powerful Cornellian alumni community. SHA provides the comprehensive preparation you need to explore careers, find the best path for your passions, and launch your career in the largest, most exciting industry in the world.
SHA Undergraduate Career Success by the Numbers
Here’s a quick look at the employability and job prospects for SHA undergraduates, based on the most recently graduated SHA class for which we have comprehensive data.
*from class of ’20 graduates
received offers within four months of graduation
average base salary
average combined bonus
employed in the financial services industry
SHA Career Paths Lead to Every Corner of Hospitality
With the broad-based, comprehensive business preparation you get at SHA, you can choose from a huge range of hospitality management careers — both traditional and off the beaten path.
Explore Hospitality Career Paths by Industry
The traditional province of hospitality management, these careers include jobs at resorts or restaurants, within resort corporate offices, or in project consulting.
Property – Hospitality Operations:Manager in Training, Assistant Revenue Manager, Assistant General Manager, Front Office Manager, Operations Manager, Rooms Voyager
Restaurant and Food Services: General Manager, Manager, Manager in Training, Table Server, Shift Manager, Director of Food and Beverage
E-commerce:Area Manager, Vendor Manager, Associate, Senior HRA
Business Services and Systems:Technical Solutions Specialist, Software Engineer, Product Specialist, Business Consultant
Top SHA Employers
From Fortune 500 corporations to nonprofit organizations to entrepreneurial startups, our graduates find rewarding careers in hospitality and every part of the business landscape. Some of the more recognizable employer names include Amazon, Bain & Co., BCG, Blackstone, CBRE, EY, Four Seasons, Fulcrum, Goldman Sachs, Hilton, JLL, J.P.Morgan, Marriott International, Pebblebrook Hotel Trust, PWC, Wings.
SHA Graduates: Bright Job Prospects with Promising Post-Graduation Career Outcomes
When you graduate with a bachelor’s degree from SHA with superlative knowledge and skills and proven practical experience, you’re one of the most employable new prospects on the job market. Our graduates are sought — and well-compensated — by employers in many industries, in a huge range of organizations.
“The skills you attain at the School of Hotel Administration are transferable to any industry. I developed an action plan on skills I wanted to gain from SHA, leveraged those skills during interviews, and secured the opportunity to intern at Google. And, it all happened because the school planned a career immersion trip to SF!”
“SHA helped me build a connection between what matters most — the spirit of hospitality and taking care of fellow team members — and how I could make a difference by pursuing my strengths in understanding complex problems through data. Every year I come back to recruit that mix of passion and analytical rigor and am constantly impressed.”
“The HADM electives reflect the wide variety of careers in the hospitality industry. Taking restaurant development showed me an opportunity in food and
beverage that was more analytical than the traditional path.”
“Even if you aren't sure what your career goals are for after graduation, SHA is the perfect place to explore and figure that out. Our curriculum, alumni network, extracurriculars, and larger community are so vast and diverse — there is nothing that Hotelies can't do!”
“My time at SHA gave me a deep understanding of the hospitality industry that was underpinned by a comprehensive business curriculum and helped me form critical industry relationships. These factors combined to set me on the path to be a successful leader in business.”
"SHA has allowed me to explore all different facets of hospitality and embrace having a diversity of career experiences. I have interests in real estate, hotel operations, consulting, airlines...the list goes on and on. Despite having so many interests, the SHA career management team always helps me find opportunities that best fit my background and allow me to try new industries. Because of my courses and projects at SHA, I'm able to showcase how hospitality is the essence of any type of business. SHA's unique approach to hospitality allows me to continue my goal of having diverse experiences.”
Our Hotelie students and alumni, some of the brightest, most innovative hospitality management professionals you’ll find anywhere, carve their own niche in a wide range of industry segments the world over. Take a look at how they continue to shape the industry and push its boundaries.
Unrivaled Resources and Guidance to Help Plan and Manage Your Career
SHA provides you with access to experienced industry leaders and programs designed to catapult you into the working world. Through SHA’s connections and preparation, you will succeed.
Each fall, we hold a general hospitality Career Day and a Real Estate Career Day to help you learn more about organizations, career paths, and employment opportunities. To help students prepare to meet with recruiters, the SHA Career Management Center hosts a Hospitality Career week and offers extensive guidance and training, including Q&A sessions, resume workshops, mock interview practice, and orientation and information sessions, year-round.
Throughout the year, we host company presentations and showcases, giving you hundreds of opportunities to connect with potential employers, discover a variety of hospitality organizations, learn about internship and full-time opportunities, and entice professional recruiters with your resume. Hospitality organizations in such sectors as financial services, retail, and nonprofit often recruit directly at SHA; you can find even more opportunities through Cornell Career Services (CCS) and Cornell’s online recruiting platform, Handshake.
As an SHA student, you have many opportunities to pursue fulfilling internship opportunities with the dozens of organizations that recruit at SHA, as well as at the Cornell SC Johnson College of Business and other Cornell units. One SHA-specific opportunity is the Pillsbury Internship Program sponsored by the Leland C. and Mary M. Pillsbury Institute for Hospitality Entrepreneurship, a 2- to 12-week internship that allows you to gain practical experience in hospitality-focused innovation and entrepreneurship. Handshake can also be used to search available summer job listings. To find out what other Cornell students have done in previous years, students can search Cornell’s database of previous summer positions, a valuable information resource used to strategize and develop possible summer job leads.
An SC Johnson Business School exclusive, Big Red Briefcase is an excellent current student resource for information on creating resumes and cover letters, networking tips, templates, interview pointers, and other useful information. The platform, developed in partnership with Indiana University’s Career EDGE, is available to students around the clock.
Dressing professionally is a necessary part of networking and interviewing, whether for career fairs, internship recruitment opportunities, or the Dean’s Distinguished Lecture Series (DDLS). Not having the right attire can mean you miss out on promising experiences. To help you meet the occasion, Big Red Threads is a professional clothing closet that provides SHA students with work apparel free of charge (including alterations). This wardrobe is supplied and funded by faculty, staff, and Cornell alumni dedicated to helping our students put their best foot forward.
As part of the SHA curriculum, you must complete 800 hours of paid or unpaid work in the hospitality/service industry. Unlike the other items listed on this page, this is a required part of your curriculum; however, note that you can fulfill some or all of this requirement with internships, summer jobs, or experiential learning opportunities such as Hotel Ezra Cornell (HEC).
This unique service provides “insider” views of companies to Cornell students performing career research. Vault includes glimpses into an organization’s corporate culture, internships, salary surveys, salary negotiation and interview tips, and other useful information. Vault’s Career Insider includes company guides on specific organizations like Hilton Hotels, Hyatt Corporation, Marriott Corporation, McKinsey & Company, Ritz Carlton, and Yum! Brands, as well as industry guides for food services, hospitality, food and beverage, travel, real estate, and finance and quantitative professions.
Explore the premier destination for hospitality jobs and career advice. The partnership between SHA and Hcareers allows you access to more than 25,000 active job postings daily. Employers posting on the site include Wyndham Hotels & Resorts, Highgate, Hilton, Real Hospitality Group, Drury Hotels, and countless other industry leaders
Leading Hospitality Networking Opportunities
Networking is the most effective way to learn about career paths and organizations, develop contacts, and uncover the hidden job market. Effective networking can significantly enhance your career prospects. You may already be a great networker, but everyone can use some help, and the Career Management team offers many useful tools.
SHA alumni are influential and devoted to their fellow Hotelies. Use our online directory to find alumni who can help you locate potential opportunities in their organizations, provide informational interviews and referrals, and offer industry advice and tips.
The summer experience survey database can help you learn about other Cornell students’ experiences in summer internships and jobs. Here you’ll find entries from students from all colleges throughout the university.
SHA offers company presentation information sessions the evening before a company’s on-campus interviews. Putting you in direct touch with company recruiters, these events are a great way to learn firsthand about an organization, their available positions, and why they love SHA students. Participating organizations include Hilton, Marriott, Four Seasons, Pebblebrook, Jones Lang LaSalle, Morgan Stanley, and Wells Fargo.
These informal meetings, scheduled between 11:30 a.m. and 1:30 p.m., provide a great opportunity to discuss summer and permanent opportunities and learn about visiting organizations. Schedule an interview or drop by the organization’s booth in the World Atrium to learn useful information and build your network.
Our expert Career Management staff hold valuable events to help you with your professional future, including question-and-answer sessions with industry representatives, one-on-one resume/cover letter virtual workshops, virtual mock interviews with industry representatives, and orientations and information sessions to learn more about Career Management programs and services. And check out upcoming programs through the blog and weekly newsletter, Hotelie Career Connection.
What Recruiters Are Saying
The reputation of SHA alums precedes them. Companies want to work with the intelligent, innovative, and hardworking individuals that graduate with a degree from SHA.
“We love hiring SHA students because of their dedication and drive to succeed. We find their passion for hotels an excellent fit for our company and know that investing in them early will be a benefit for both them and our organization for years to come.”
– Sarah D’Angelo, Senior Manager, University Relations & Recruiting
“Pebblebrook greatly values our relationship with the Cornell Peter and Stephanie Nolan School of Hotel Administration, and we look forward to meeting the prospective candidates every year. Knowing the curriculum provides students with the fundamental building blocks for the hospitality real estate industry, we can focus on finding the best fit for our company culture. As a company with many Cornell graduates, we have been impressed by the success of past students and are excited for the new knowledge the future students will bring.”
– Zoe LaClair, Director
Career Treks: Visit Companies in Hospitality Hubs to Learn and Network
These career-focused journeys, offered to first- and second-year students in the Cornell SC Johnson College of Business, afford a great opportunity to explore careers in hospitality and build connections with firms. Held during the winter break and led by the Career Management team, these “insider experiences” let you visit employers and alumni on-site to learn about roles, responsibilities, and company cultures to better inform your own career development.
Past Undergraduate Career Treks
Real estate career trek to Washington, D.C., and Bethesda, MD
Hospitality career trek to New York City
Data analytics career trek to San Francisco
Consumer goods career trek to Minneapolis
Dedicated Career Management Staff and Resources for Undergraduates
As an SHA student, you have a wealth of career guidance and assistance through two powerful, complementary career management offices. SHA’s career experts offer industry-focused resources and connections, while the professionals at Cornell Career Services can tap into the broader opportunities of the vast university network.