Salary & Growth
Graduates in the Foodservice, Lodging and Recreation Management program can find employment in the public and private sectors as managers of various hospitality operations including spas, foodservice facilities, lodging facilities, campgrounds, healthcare, casinos, cruise ships, bed and breakfasts, stadiums, amusement parks, catering and school food service. In the Allegheny County area, entry-level salaries average $17,640 with more experienced salaries averaging $42,400. Annual openings are expected to reach 192 in the Three Rivers Area and over 310 openings are projected in Pennsylvania through 20181.
On a national level,employment of chefs, head cooks and food preparation and serving supervisors is expected to increase by 6% over the 2008–2018. A growing number of chefs participate in training programs sponsored by independent cooking schools, professional culinary institutes, two-year or four-year colleges with a hospitality or culinary arts department or in the armed forces. Employment of hotel, motel and resort desk clerks is expected to grow by 14% during the 2008–2018. Postsecondary education is not required for this job, but some background or coursework in hospitality is helpful. Recreation supervisors oversee recreation leaders and plan, organize and manage recreational activities to meet the needs of a variety of populations.
Overall employment of recreation workers is projected to increase by 15% between 2008 and 2018, which is faster than the average for all occupations. Recreation workers hold a variety of positions at different levels of responsibility. Those who work directly with children in residential or day camps are called camp counselors. These workers lead and instruct children and teenagers in a variety of outdoor recreation activities, such as swimming, hiking, horseback riding and camping. Those working in administrative positions for large organizations or public recreation systems may need a bachelor’s degree or higher. Full-time career professional positions usually require a college degree with a major in parks and recreation or leisure studies, but a bachelor's degree in any liberal arts field may be sufficient for some jobs in the private sector.
Median annual wage and salary earnings of chefs and head cooks were $38,770 in May 2008. The middle 50% earned between $29,050 and $51,540. The lowest 10% earned less than $22,120, and the highest 10% earned more than $66,680. Median annual wages for hotel, motel and resort desk clerks were $19,480 in May 2008. Median annual wages of recreation workers who worked full time were $21,960. The middle 50% earned between $17,680 and $28,810. The lowest paid 10% earned less than $15,630, while the highest paid 10% earned $37,730 or more. However, earnings of recreation directors and others in supervisory or managerial positions can be substantially higher. Most public and private recreation agencies provide full-time recreation workers with typical benefits; part-time workers receive few, if any, benefits2.
Job openings for chefs, head cooks and food preparation and serving supervisors are expected to be strong through 2018; however, competition should be keen for jobs at the more upscale restaurants that tend to pay more. Workers with a good business sense will have better job prospects, especially at restaurant chains where attention to costs is very important. Although job growth will create many new positions, the majority of job openings will stem from the need to replace workers who leave the occupation. The fast pace, long hours and high energy levels required for these jobs often lead to high turnover.
During recessions, vacation and business travel declines, and hotels and motels need fewer desk clerks. However, newly opened hotels, increased travel as economic conditions improve, and the need to replace the many desk clerks who leave this occupation each year will offer new opportunities. Overall employment of recreation workers is projected to increase faster than the average for all occupations2.
1 PA CareerLink
2 Occupational Outlook Handbook 2010–11