Work and International Experiences

In addition to academic coursework, SHA students complete  two 400 hour non-credit work experiences (HF140 and HF240) and one international experience (HF440). These internships are designed to give students practical work experience in the field, exposing them firsthand to the hospitality industry in the United States and worldwide.

It is very important that students understand the work experiences (HF 140/240) and international experience (HF 440)  requirements. See the attached pdf manuals for details.

Effective Fall 2013, all students must receive Faculty Advisor approval of their work experience PRIOR to beginning each work experience. If you are unsure of whom your Faculty Advisor is, please consult Student Link.

Work Experience I (SHA HF140)

The first work experience is designed to give students better insight into the field of hospitality. A minimum of 400 hours in an internship or job within the industry is required. This position is intended to be an exploratory experience in which you begin to understand what segment of the industry you would like to pursue. The job or internship must be related to the field of hospitality and students should select an experience which will fit into their future career goals.

  • Complete at least 400 continuous hours working in the same position for the same hospitality employer
  • Obtain a work verification letter from your employer
  • Register for SHA HF140 after you complete 400 hours
  • Complete all components of the e-portfolio on Digication (all information will be provided through BlackBoard Learn upon registration for SHA HF140)

Work Experience II (SHA HF240)

The second work requirement will provide students an opportunity to work in a position that involves more responsibility than their first experience. A minimum of 400 hours in an a leadership or supervisory  role will give students the background necessary to become a strong candidate for a career position upon graduation.

  • Complete at least 400 continuous hours working in the same position for the same hospitality employer
  • Obtain a work verification letter from your employer
  • Register for SHA HF240 after you complete 400 hours
  • Complete all components of the e-portfolio on Digication (all information will be provided through BlackBoard Learn upon registration for SHA HF240)

International Experience (SHA HF440)

The International Experience is a requirement for all School of Hospitality Administration students. The purpose of the international experience requirement is to expose SHA students to a culture outside the United States. The global nature of the hospitality industry necessitates a genuine sensitivity to cultures other than our own. Employers value language skills and/or study abroad experiences.

  • Complete one of the following:
    1. an approved study abroad program (Students are NOT eligible to apply for a study abroad program unless they have completed at least one 400-hour work experience) or
    2. an independent internship abroad/a structured international trip with a hospitality focus (must be pre-approved) or
    3. a third semester of the same foreign language
  • Obtain a work verification letter from your employer
  • Register for SHA HF440 after you complete one of the requirements listed under the first bullet point
  • Complete all components of the e-portfolio on Digication (all information will be provided through Blackboard Learn upon registration for SHA HF440)

*INTERNATIONAL STUDENTS: The International Students and Scholars Office (ISSO) requires that you register for a field or international experience class (HF140, HF240 or HF440) while you are working in the United States. Schedule an appointment to meet with the SHA Career Services Office and an ISSO advisor to fill out the appropriate legal paperwork before you begin your work experience. Failure to do so will jeopardize your visa status.

NOTE: Consult with SHA’s Office of Career Services for assistance in selecting experiences that are acceptable to fulfill these requirements.