What It's All About

Students enrolled in the Food Service Operations and Hospitality Leadership program are educated in the operating functions, management and leadership of a variety of industry establishments related to food service and tourism. Advanced management skills are a highlight of our program and are learned in both the traditional classroom and through the hands-on operation of our student-run restaurant operations. 

Job Outlook

Graduates from NMU's hospitality programs have a wide variety of career opportunities within their communities and across the globe within food service, events, lodging, and tourism segments.

Median Earnings

Salary: $40k-$90k

Projected Job Growth

to 2029
+9% (National)
+8% (Michigan)

Earnings, job growth and education levels noted are from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (National), and CareerOneStop/U.S. Department of Labor (Michigan).

Reed Benton

Director of Operations and Destination Services, Discover Kalamazoo

Current M.S. Integrated Marketing Communications Student, B.S. Hospitality Management

Jason A. Biega

Director of Food & Beverage, Deployed Capital

Ainsley Boneville

Chef, Beachcomber Cafe



Isabella Clapp

Banquet Server

Current B.S. Hospitality Leadership Student

Dylana Clevenger

Banquet/Cabana Bar Manager, Oasis Hotel & Convention Center



Alexa Christiensen, CDM, CFPP

Head of Dietary, Canal View Houghton County Medical Care Facility

B.S., A.A.S, Certification in Dietary Management

Ana-Marija Dolaskie

Co-owner and Managing Director, Deployed Capital

B.A. Journalism

Denise Elizondo

Business Development Manager, NMU

B.A. Marketing

Cooper Graves

Executive Chef, Tupelo Honey Southern Kitchen & Bar

B.S. Hospitality Management

Sean Hartwig

Owner, Zephyr Wine Bar


Ben Hayes

Area Manager, Performance Foodservice


Orion Ingmire

Sous Chef, Zephyr Wine Bar

B.S. Hospitality Leadership


Micah Johnson, CC

Line Cook, Rosalie

A.A.S, Culinary Arts/Chef Training


Michelle Kimball

Director of Operations CTOS, NMU

M.A. English

Daniel Lange

Restaurant Service Manager, Lettuce Entertain You - Saranello's

B.S. Hospitality and Tourism Management

Nicholas Manning

Executive Chef, Boyne Mountain Resort

B.S. Culinary Arts

Patrick Mulvaney

Chef and Owner, Mulvaney's B&L

B.A. Chemistry, B.A. English

Liza Nagelkirk

Assistant Director of Marketing & Recruitment CTOS, NMU

B.S. English/Graduate Bound

Brett I. Peterson

Registered Dietician, NMU

B.S. Heath Education, B.S. Clinical/Administrative Dietetics

Jason Pooker

Chef, Prime Inc.

A.A.S. Culinary Arts, B.A. Theatre


George Ranney

A.S. Hospitality Management

Jesse Renfors

President, Provisions MQT



Faith Roush

Current B.S. Hospitality Leadership Student

Amanda Smith

Executive Vice President, Michigan Restaurant & Lodging Association

B.A.Sc. Business Administration and Communication Arts

Michael K. Sprague

Production Manager Plant Operations, Focus Consumer Products

Elena Terry

Executive Chef, Wild Bearies

A.A. Culinary Arts/Chef Training, B.A. Political Science & Philosophy


Ben Trotochaud

Fleet Manager and Operational Assistant, Fassbender Swanson Hansen

Current B.S. Hospitality Leadership Student

Ross Weber

District Sous Chef, Compass Group

B.S. Hospitality Management

Stephanie Zadroga-Langlois

Director of Continuing Education and Workforce Development, NMU

B.S. English/French, M.A. English

food in the training kitchen

"My whole life I have loved to bake but I never thought of doing it as a career. That was until I researched the majors NMU offered, when I discovered the Hospitality program it opened so many doors for me in the possibilities I could do with my passion."

Erin Turner


Hospitality Leadership

Bachelor of Science

Graduates of NMU's Bachelor of Science in Hospitality Leadership are confidently prepared for operational positions in the dynamic hospitality industry. The program takes pride in integrating theory and practice, providing students opportunities to experience the leadership roles necessary for thriving careers in both the independent and corporate sectors of food service, meetings and events, destination marketing organizations, and more. Key highlights include in-depth concept development, management, leadership theory, personnel administration and trending customer service practices, developing tomorrow's industry leaders. 


Program Outline

Food Service Operations

Associate of Applied Science

An associate of applied sciences in Restaurant Food Service Operations at NMU provides a hands-on foundation of the skills needed for entry-level positions in the food and beverage industry. With an emphasis on all functions of successful restaurant operations, the program hones students' skills in quantity food production, customer service, purchasing, facilities management, and cost controls while providing industry certification required for all Michigan restaurants to operate. This associate degree ladders into NMU's Bachelor of Science Degree in Hospitality Leadership.


Program Outline

Hospitality Systems


A minor in Hospitality Systems at NMU provides students the knowledge and skills fundamental to any food service operation. Students will understand the hospitality industry’s scope while acquiring the essential operational expertise in food service sanitation and facilities management, including industry certification required for all Michigan restaurants to operate. Designed to be accomplished in one year with the opportunity for diverse, pre-approved electives.


Program Outline

Frequently Asked Questions

  • The opportunity to diversify your resume with certifications in various languages and leadership, minors in entrepreneurship, marketing and business management
  • You won't miss out on the college experience
  1. Bridges the Knowledge Gap: Culinary school is for more than those who aspire to be Chefs. While NMU’s culinary school heavily focuses on food service, it also provides skills such as procurement, cost management, team dynamics, and leadership that assist those who desire to work in various aspects of food service. Distributors, dietitians, sanitation leads, food service design, marketing, consulting. 
  2. Dedication to YOUR Growth: The time and attention dedicated to your growth in culinary school can’t be replicated on the job. While restaurants are dedicated to service, schools are dedicated to learning. Your education is the purpose of the environment created by your instructors, who dedicate their time to answering your questions and allowing you room to make mistakes without holding up the service of an established business. At NMU, small lab class sizes are prioritized to ensure individualized attention.
  3. Understand The How, Not Just The Why: NMU’s Food Service Operations program recognizes experience within the food service industry is essential to know if you like the industry, but taking the time to be exposed to the science and art of food, the diverse skills, equipment, and leadership of the industry provided through culinary training will enhance your career outlook and potential.
  4. Reduced Training Time: Employers can ensure new hires come with a certain level of knowledge, saving time in on-the-job training and enhancing the graduate's pay scale.
  5. Passion and Dedication: Your dedication to education shows your dedication to the industry. Employers experience high turnover in this field, and hiring employees who have already dedicated themselves through training benefits an organization’s bottom line.
  6. Increased Professionalism (Structure and Discipline): Exposure to kitchen etiquette leads to employable habits and ensures you are equipped to keep up. Being surrounded by like-minded individuals who will hold you accountable provides an advantage when growing your career. 
  7. NMU is a Unique Choice: Unlike many two-year culinary arts and hospitality programs, NMU can diversify your resume and support you in ways typical trade schools cannot. 
  8. Build a Network and Feel Supported: NMU (and Marquette) is unique among two-year culinary programs for the diversity of opportunities the on-campus experience can provide. By attending a public university, Food Service students gain access to leadership, entrepreneurship, and business administration courses to assist them in diversifying their career potential. Being part of such a large community provides access to student clubs, career networking and mentorship opportunities, and community engagement. In addition to the myriad of opportunities within seeking your degree, NMU provides post-education career support.
  1. This people-centered program aims to change the stigmas associated with the hospitality field, engaging students in traditional trade skills alongside team and leadership training.
  2. Experiential, real time learning leads to
    • Creative Problem-Solving skills
    • Entrepreneurial mindsets
    • Innovations
  3. While customer service is an essential part of all industries, this degree places it first, while engaging students in career skills spanning food service, events, marketing, tourism, health and wellness and more.
  4. Degree leads to various segments of professional industry
  5. Global employment opportunity
    • Always in-demand skills
  6. Dynamic and Captivating Employment Opportunities: (management jobs are available, as well as a wide diversity of other positions in areas such as real estate, IT, marketing and branding.)
  7. Attending a public university provided diverse learning opportunities to grow your resume.
  8. Growing potential as both a skills based and administrative field
  9. Jumpstart career potential among like-minded peers creating networking experience for a career in a fast-paced, ever changing industry


NorthFork, NMU's teaching kitchen

NMU's Training Kitchen

NorthFork, NMU’s Teaching Kitchen is a dining laboratory developed, staffed, and operated by NMU’s Food Service Operations and Hospitality Leadership students as a working classroom. This unique dining opportunity evolves with our student's goals and aspirations as they lead the direction of our menu creation and service style each semester. While operating the Teaching Kitchen, students gain experience developing and managing a fine dining kitchen, dining room, and service staff in a hands-on environment.

When guests dine at NorthFork, they are active in educating tomorrow's hospitality leaders. While guest satisfaction is what we train for, the overall goal of the Training Kitchen is to advance the education of our students. 

North Fork, NMU's Teaching Kitchen, is currently closed for the 2024 Winter semester.

Hospitality Club

The Hospitality Club provides an opportunity for future hospitality leaders to enhance the knowledge and skills that will assist them in professional development, to address the current and future needs within the hospitality and tourism industry, and to promote better relations between all communities; local, national and worldwide, through a framework of service, leadership, and teamwork. 


Contact Information

The Food Service Operations & Hospitality Leadership program is located at Northern Michigan University's Northern Center, Room 2216.
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The Technology and Occupational Sciences Department is located at Northern Michigan University's Jacobetti Complex, Office Suite 105.
Phone: 906-227-2190
Email: tos@nmu.edu


Food Service Operations & Hospitality Leadership Faculty & Staff

Loganne Glendening | Associate Professor

Phone: 906-227-1958
Email: lglenden@nmu.edu