Penn State School of Hospitality Management

Pennsylvania State University School of Hospitality Management
Type   Public
Established 1937
Dean Donna Quadri-Felitti
Location University Park, Pennsylvania, United States
Campus University Park

The Pennsylvania State University School of Hospitality Management (also known as SHM) is located at the main campus of The Pennsylvania State University in University Park, Pennsylvania and serves over 700 students. SHM is one of the three oldest continually-operating hospitality management programs in the United States and offers a Bachelor of Science (B.S.), Master of Science (M.S.) and Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.) in Hospitality Management.[1]

SHM houses a Career Center under the direction of Mr. Brian Black, a Center for Food Innovation under the direction of Dr. Peter Bordi, a Center for Hospitality Real Estate Strategy under the direction of Dr. John O'Neill and a Hospitality Leadership Institute under the direction of Ms. Ruth Ann Jackson.[2][3][4] The school hosts under the direction of Dr. Amit Sharma, the ICHRIE Penn State Research Reports, translational research studies designed for hospitality industry executives.[5] SHM also has an Industry Advisory Board composed of leading hospitality industry executives who provide the school with strategic advice and strengthen SHM's industry links for such things as career placement, education, and research, as well as help faculty remain current about industry trends.[6] The school's alumni association is known as the Penn State Hotel and Restaurant Society.[7]


The hospitality management program at Penn State formally began in 1937 as an outgrowth of Institutional Management and was originally known as Hotel Administration.

In 1958, the program became Food Service and Housing Administration (FSHA), dividing the Hotel Administration major into two separate majors – Commercial Food Service and Institutional Resident Management.

In the 1970s, the program became focused on Service Management and Administrative Dietetics.

In 1981, the program name changed again, and the Department of Hotel, Restaurant and Institutional Management (HRIM) was formed. The department was upgraded in 1987, and the School of Hotel, Restaurant and Institutional Management was created. In 2005, the program was renamed the School of Hospitality Management.[8]

Mateer Building and Cafe Laura

Mateer Building- Penn State School of Hospitality Management

The School of Hospitality Management is located in the Mateer Building on the northwest corner of Penn State's University Park campus near the intersection of Atherton Street and Park Avenue. Mateer was completed in 1993 and is named after A. Laura Mateer and her husband M.C. "Matty" Mateer in whose memory she had donated $1.5 million to the School. Mateer is the host to Cafe Laura, the Center for Food Innovation, the Career Center, conference rooms, faculty offices, a computer laboratory and classrooms.[9]

Cafe Laura, named for Laura Mateer, is the student-run restaurant located in the Mateer Building.[10] Under the supervision of instructors, students receive hands-on restaurant experience in a laid back lunch setting and a formal theme dinner setting.[11] Café Laura underwent a significant make-over in 2013, with an all new dining area including tables, chairs, carpeting, painting, artwork, signage, lighting fixtures, equipment and window treatments, new menus and the addition of grab-and-go equipment and service. During 2014, an additional $1.2 million renovation occurred that included a completely new servery, espresso bar, executive dining room, rest rooms, and additional lighting fixtures, carpeting, painting, artwork, signage and menus.[12]

Penn State SHM in the news

The faculty and staff in the Penn State School of Hospitality Management are frequently referenced by local and national news media for their expertise and classroom activities. In 2014, Dr. John O'Neill released a study for the American Hotel & Lodging Association (AH&LA) and the Asian American Hotel Owners Association (AAHOA) that examined the potential economic impact of an increase in the national minimum wage to $10.10 per hour.[13][14][15][16][17][18][19] Dr. O'Neill also releases on a quarterly basis the Penn State Index of U.S. Hotel Values, an econometric model projecting future hotel market values that is frequently cited by national media.[20][21] Associate Professor Dan Mount was interviewed in 2010 by CNN concerning bed bug reports at hotels,[22] and Professor Bert Van Hoof was quoted in a 2008 USA Today article that addressed college students choosing hospitality management as a major.[23]

The Center for Food Innovation (CFI) in SHM and its Director, Dr. Peter Bordi were recognized for their contributions to creating healthy foods by State College Magazine,[24] and the Advanced Meeting and Event Planning course taught by Jackie Golas was the subject of a 2013 Centre Daily Times article.[25] Senior Instructor Peter Yersin's teaching career at Penn State was the topic of a 2011 State College Magazine article titled 9 to 5 with Peter Yersin.[26] Dr. John O'Neill was quoted on NBC Today concerning Jazz Age packages based on The Great Gatsby movie release,[27] and in the New York Times concerning sleeping accommodations at private clubs.[28] Dr. O'Neill's research on the most common types of stressors in the hospitality industry among managers and hourly employees was recently cited by TNS.[29]

The Food Decisions Research Laboratory (FDRL) at Penn State University is a collaborative capacity committed to conducting empirical research in behavioral economic analysis and evaluates cost-benefits of choices and decisions associated with food service environments. Amit Sharma, faculty member at the School of Hospitality Management is the Director of the Laboratory. More information regarding this research initiative can be found at

National rankings

The Hospitality Management program at Penn State has frequently been recognized as one of the leading hospitality programs in the world, currently ranked #7 by ".[30]" In contributions to academic research, Dr. Anna Mattila was ranked as the most prolific hospitality author of the new millennium and Dr. John O'Neill was ranked in the top ten in a Journal of Hospitality and Tourism Research (JHTR) article,[31] Dr. Breffni Noone received the 2013 JHTR Article of the Year Award,[32] and Dr. Michael Tews received the 2013 Cornell Hospitality Quarterly Best Article Award.[33] A JHTR article on academic leadership in hospitality and tourism journals ranked Penn State as second highest for universities with chief editors and sixth in total number of occurrences as chief editors, associate editors and editorial board members.[34]

Penn State was ranked as number four in a JHTR article regarding the top 100 hospitality programs,[35] and ranked third in publication contributions to the Cornell Hospitality Quarterly.[36] A research article analyzed the number of contributions in leading hospitality journals, and showed Penn State had the sixth highest number of contributions.[37] A Hospitality Review article ranked Penn State as the number two graduate hospitality program.[38] A Journal of Hospitality & Tourism Education article ranked Penn State as the number five undergraduate hospitality program,[39] while a Journal of Hospitality & Tourism Education article ranked Penn State as the number four undergraduate hospitality program.[40]

Conti Professorship

The Conti Professorship was established in 1987 by alumni and friends of the Penn State School of Hospitality Management. The professorship program honors Walter J. Conti, a former multi-unit restaurant operator and Chair of the National Restaurant Association for his contributions to the School, Penn State, and the hospitality profession. Conti Professors are recognized leaders within the hospitality industry who visit the school to interact with students and faculty, present guest lectures in hospitality management, and speak at graduate and undergraduate colloquia.[41] The distinguished list of over 70 Conti Professors includes some of the most recognized names in the hospitality industry, including entrepreneurs, CEOs and leading industry educators. The most recent notable Conti Professors have been:

Penn State Hospitality Services

Hospitality Services is an auxiliary enterprise of The Pennsylvania State University serving the hospitality needs of Penn State faculty, staff, students and the general public. Hospitality Services employs students and alumni of the School of Hospitality Management in both full- and part-time positions and provides internships for many SHM students.[45] Students are exposed to both the Nittany Lion Inn and Penn Stater Conference Center Hotel in the HM 380 (Hotel Management) course. Students learn about the Front Office, Housekeeping, and Maintenance Departments at each hotel throughout the semester. In HM 495, students participate in a supervised internship with Penn State Hospitality Services working in one specific department for at each hotel throughout the semester.[46]

The Nittany Lion Inn, The Penn Stater Conference Center Hotel, the Roar Suites at Beaver Stadium and the Suites at the Pegula Ice Arena are managed by Penn State Hospitality Services.[47] In 2014, the Nittany Lion Inn was awarded the AAA Four Diamond designation,[48] the TripAdvisor Certificate of Excellence[49] and the National Trust for Historic Preservation's Historic Hotels of America certification.[50] Also, the Penn Stater Conference Center was awarded the International Association of Conference Centers (IACC) certification in 2014.[51]


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  30. The Best Schools
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