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Examples of Work That Will Qualify

  • Hotel operations in any functional department, including rooms division, food and beverage, accounting, engineering, human resource management, marketing, revenue management, and sales.
  • Restaurant operations in both back-of-house and front-of-house.
  • On-site foodservice when work is in food and beverage operations. Experiences in corporate dining, education, health care, stadiums and arenas, and parks qualify, provided the work is not limited to vending.
  • Casinos when work is in rooms division, food and beverage, or gaming activities.
  • Clubs when work is in food and beverage operations, member services, or sales.
  • Corporate-level jobs and internships with hotel, restaurant, or on-site foodservice companies in any functional area.
  • Hospitality consulting, appraisal, asset management, and finance.
  • Penn State Hospitality Services and Penn State Housing and Food Service internships.
  • Hospitality positions in meeting and event planning.
  • Hospitality positions in senior living.

Examples of Work That Will Not Qualify

  • Apartment rentals, management, or maintenance.
  • Financial services.
  • Grocery store cashier, stock, or deli. However, some jobs in prepared foods or catering may be acceptable.
  • Hours completed as part of any School of Hospitality Management course (e.g., HM 330, HM 430, and HM 380) or teaching assistantship.
  • Non-hospitality club positons, such as lifeguard, golf operations, pro shop, child care, or grounds keeping.
  • Non-hospitality work in hotels, such as lifeguard and gift shop.
  • Receptionist in a salon or spa.
  • Retail sales.
  • Volunteer work with a charity, religious group, or student club (e.g., THON and Catering Club).
  • Employment completed during high school.

Entry-level jobs requiring little experience, such as dishwashing, bussing tables, and scooping ice cream, may technically qualify. However, such experiences are unlikely to create interest among potential employers. Everyone must start their experience somewhere, but hard work and determination will typically allow students to quickly advance beyond the most basic jobs. Students are encouraged to secure experiences beyond entry-level positions, particularly as they progress through their college careers. Career services and advisors are here to assist students in their professional employment search.

The final determination of whether a specific employment experience qualifies resides with the School’s Professor-In-Charge of the Undergraduate Program. If students are unsure whether specific experiences will count toward the professional experience requirement, they are encouraged to meet with the Professor-In-Charge prior to accepting and beginning work. It should be noted that only specific opportunities will qualify in clubs, meetings and event planning, and senior living. Students interested in pursuing such opportunities are advised to verify in advance whether an experience will qualify.