Home » Academics » Programs & Training » Business & Hospitality » L. Joe Van Why School of Hospitality Associate Degree

About our L. Joe Van Why School of Hospitality Associate Degree

The L. Joe Van Why School of Hospitality program provides students with a solid foundation in theory and current practices of the hospitality industry as well as a core of liberal arts and science courses that will prepare students for flexible career development. This degree focuses on one of the fastest-growing industries in the world: hospitality, to include focus areas in food and restaurant operations, lodging industry operations, events management and tourism.

This hospitality management degree program prepares students for first employment at a supervisory level, or continuation to a bachelor of hospitality management degree. The program includes a 160-hour internship program in the four most important departments of a hotel: concierge, front desk, events planning and night audit.

Graduation Outcomes

  • Students will demonstrate broad knowledge of and proficiency in the core functional and support areas of hospitality businesses.
  • Know effective cost control methods and cost-saving techniques for hospitality services.
  • Plan menus and purchase, cost and price product for profit.
  • Demonstrate a working knowledge of hotel front office management and hospitality industry marketing.
  • Operate as an entry-level supervisor in operational departments within the hospitality industry.
  • Exhibit solid work ethics, good interpersonal communications, cultural awareness and teamwork skills.

What opportunities does this program provide?

SMCC graduates in this program have gone on to work as:

  • General Manager
  • Front Office Manager
  • Events Planner
  • Wedding Planner

Continue Your Education

Available transfer agreements for this program include:

Estimated Full-Time Degree Completion Time


Please note, these estimates are based on a student taking an average of 15 credits per semester and do not include college preparatory or developmental courses.

Interested in viewing full program and course details?

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Be sure to view the degree program requirements for your specific program. Log into MySMCC and click My Maine Guide, MyDegree to learn more.

Not ready to commit to a degree program? We may have other options that work for you.

Did you know that we offer a broad array of short-term workforce training programs that allow you to enter the workforce and start earning quickly? These programs are a great way to enter a career in your area of interest and to become accustomed to college classes. They are also often grant-funded (free of charge to trainees). And, if you find you want to keep going, we can help you find a related academic degree or certificate program of interest with which you can continue your education.


Costs & Financial Aid

This degree program may have specific associated costs which are important to know before attending. We encourage you to apply for financial aid which provides funds in the form of grants and scholarship (free), loans (need to repay) and student employment (earned money.)

Bed & Butter: THE Hospitality Podcast

Bed Butter SMCC Combo Logo KO 1024x1018

Bed and Butter, is THE Hospitality podcast where host Sean Riley, a seasoned hotel executive, shares over 40 years of industry wisdom. Produced in collaboration with Southern Maine Community College and Communications & New Media Studies program students, the program integrates national leaders discussing opportunities for culinary arts and hospitality students. Learn more.

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Contact Us:

Admissions: 207-741-5800 or 

Department Chair: Maureen LaSalle, 207-741-5746 or

A three-credit class averages


Full-time tuition & fees


*Additional program costs may apply.


South Portland, Brunswick & Online