Career Opportunities

Contact: College of Education/Human Development advising at 419-372-7372 or Room 102 Education Bldg.

Degree: Bachelor of Science in Education

Impact on Society

Tourism has become one of the world's most important sources of employment. (Source:  World Tourism Organization at –In 2004, Travel & Tourism in the world is expected to generate: US$ 5,490.4 billion of economic activity 10.4% of total GDP and 214,697,000 jobs or 8.1% of total employment (source: World Travel and Tourism Council at

In 2003, the U.S. travel industry received more than $554.5 billion from domestic and international travelers which meant more than 7.2 million jobs were directly generated with over $158 billion in payroll income for Americans, as well as $94.7 billion tax revenue for federal, state and local governments. This means one of out of 18 non-farm jobs were created by tourism (source 

In Ohio, Total direct spending by tourists is estimated at $28.5 billion in 2003 and tourism directly employs 505,000 full-time opportunities for Ohioans.  Tourism generates an estimated $1.9 billion in direct taxes (source: Ohio Division of Travel and Tourism).

Also see the Ohio Travel Association website at (scholarship available).

Lodging and Resort

Source of Salary figures from

Meeting and convention planners – See details in Meetings and convention section of Event planning. Meetings and convention planners at accommodations mean salary is $37,940 in 2003.  Event planning of recreation activities mean salary is approximately $18,900. Casino hotels meeting and convention planner mean salary is $34,880. 

First line Management positions –

Lodging managers mean salary is $40,700 and projected to increase by 9% in 2012. 

Marketing and sales management positions have a mean salary range of $50,000 and up.  Sales and non-retail sales managers mean salary range from $35,000 to $47,000. 

Convention services managers coordinate activities of departments in larger hotels to accommodate meetings and events.

Management trainees are entry level career positions in lodging and casino operations.

Professional associations:

American Hotel and Lodging Association.  Oho Hotel and Lodging Association (scholarship available).

International Council on Hotel, Restaurant and Institutional Education. 

The Tourism major does NOT provide any courses in Food and Beverage operations. 

Event planning

Meetings and convention planners coordinate activities of staff and convention personnel to make arrangements for meetings and conventions.

Overall employment in U.S. was $37,000 in 2002.  Projected employment from 2002 to 2012 is projected to grow faster than average (increase 21% to 35%).  Average wages for all meetings and convention planners is $42,570 in 2003 and contingent on education, experience and type (example: accommodations mean is $37,940, association mean is $47, 360, other support $46,180, colleges and universities mean is $38,410, and local government mean $41,860). 

Meeting planners (additional information)

Approximately 30% of Planners with education and experience made up to $40,000. This varies by type of planners such as association; corporate or independent (source 

Event planners exist in diverse organizations and may have titles such as marketing and promotions, event coordinator, and coordinator of public programs.  Additional tourism settings are in attractions such as museums and organizations found in the following sections on lodging and resorts, convention and visitors bureaus, and tour arrangements,

Professional associations:

Meetings Professional International,

Professional Convention Management Association, Society of Corporate Meeting Professionals, International Festival and Events Association. International Society of Special Events.


Recreation leaders who are responsible for program’s daily operation, organize and direct participants Recreation supervisors who oversee leaders and plan, organize, and manage recreational activities. Director of recreation and parks who develop/manage all facets of recreation programs. Recreation workers in the above areas and other positions are projected to grow 21%-35% until 2012. Half of all recreation positions are in governments, civic and social (non-profit) organizations (

Fitness and recreational sports centers

Facility (administrative) managers who plan, direct, or coordinate supportive services of an organization, such as facilities planning/maintenance have a mean salary of $43,100.  Supervisors of sales employees have a mean salary of $30,500, other supervisors mean salary of $42,630. 

Sample of Careers for Tourism Majors:

Unless otherwise indicated, the mean and median salaries noted below are for 2002 or 2003 and reflect employees who have experience and education across the country. (source:

Cruise Lines

Marketing and sales positions corporate / land based.

Event planning – Shipboard such as meetings/events, activities coordinators and recreation activities involving youth counselors, and other recreational activities positions.   Professional associations: Cruise Lines International Association.

Destination marketing organizations

Convention and Visitors Bureau (CVB): Organizations that promote and facilitate tourism for a destination such as a city, community, county, or region.

Career titles in CVB: Sales and marketing in specific niches such as tourism, leisure, sports, trade show, convention. Service operations in areas such as convention, housing, and visitor services.  Service development in areas such as events and cultural tourism.  Public relations and research. 

Professional Associations: International Association of Convention and Visitor Bureaus. Ohio Association of Convention and Visitor Bureaus.  Association of Destination Management Executives.

Tour Arrangements such as tour operations/ travel agencies

(planning/sales of packaged tours)

Sales/Marketing managers – 73% make between $20,000 and $50,000. 

Operations managers/tour planners – 74% make between $20,000 and $50,000.

Majority of tour operators in the survey are in small to medium size firms (source:

Meeting and convention planners – This position is in travel agencies with the mean salary in 2003 of $32,600 (see

Travel guides who plan, organize, and conduct long distance cruises, tours, and expeditions for individuals and groups mean salary in 2003 of $31,540.  .

Professional associations: National Tour Association. Society of Incentive & Travel Executives. United Motorcoach Association

Association of Retail Travel Agents. American Society of Travel Agents.  Institute of Business Travel Management.


First-line administrative manager in airlines will also supervise reservation and transportation Ticket Agents (scheduled airlines). All first-line administrative managers including office and administrative mean salary is $45,990.  These agents make and confirm reservations, contact individuals and groups to inform them of package tours, provide tourists with travel information and sell tickets to passengers has a mean salary $31,000.

Flight attendants - Many airlines today prefer a college degree for applicants. Overall U.S. employment in 2002 was 104,000.  Employment is expected to grow 10% to 20% by 2012.  Beginning flight attendants had median earnings of $15,338 in 2002 but this will vary by carrier.  Median annual earnings for all flight attendants were $43,140 in 2002.

Professional associations: Association of Flight Attendants.  Air Transport Association. 


Are creative, customer oriented, business oriented, risk-taker, adventurous, and independent minded.  Consider a tourism major in tourism administration with an entrepreneurship minor.  Learn about the key elements of travel and tourism and adopt these into a business model as an independent business owner. 

Rental cars

Management level – begin as a management trainee for major rental car companies.

Attractions- Cultural

Museums, historical sites, performing arts

Meeting and convention planners mean salary is $37,000 for museums/historical sites.

Sales Managers mean salary is $53,180

Other tourism positions in museums and performing arts include coordinator of guest/visitor services, group sales, public programs, and event coordinators.  Cultural tourist coordinators are in regional arts organizations and convention and visitors bureau.

Professional Associations:

American Association of Museums,



First line operations managers mean salary of $31,900.  First-line administrative supervisors mean salary of $36,900.  First-line manager of retail sales mean salary of $31,200. 

Professional organizations: International Association of Amusement Parks and Attractions.

Trade magazine: Amusement Business


Zoos and aquariums 

Marketing positions especially in tour and group sales, event and recreation programming, manager of guest or visitor services and membership events.

Professional Associations: American Association of Zoos and Aquariums.

Sports and Eco-tourism in Activity Resorts for golf/tennis/ski/outdoor

Professional associations: National Club Association. Club Managers Association of America.  Ecotourism society

Updated: 10/08/2020 12:58PM