Elizabeth Otto – Tourism & Hospitality Management

Class of 2014

“My experience with the Recreation, Parks, and Tourism degree program has shown me that the Events/Hospitality industry has a much broader box then what an individual might believe it to be. My specialization was Tourism and Hospitality Management, and during my time at the University of Florida, I was a student employee at the Stephen C. O’Connell Center, a field experience intern at the Stephen C. O’Connell Center, a Front Desk Agent at The Lodge at Gainesville and interned with the University of Florida Hilton within the Human Resource Department and Front Office.

The O’Connell Center exposed me to the world of special events where I was able to see how a multi-purpose facility put on various events from start to finish. I was able to be a part of the back-to-back NCAA Championship Gymnastics season as well as Gator Basketball. As a field experience intern, I was able to see the function of an Event Coordinator, the programs used to plan events from the ground up and how events are billed and invoiced. The Lodge at Gainesville gave me experience within an independent hotel, and it showed me how independent properties compete in a chain run market. My time at the University of Florida Hilton showed me how a full service, franchised hotel and conference center is operated under a property management company, and it gave me insight as to how name brand hotels function on a front line and behind the scenes level.

The Recreation, Parks, and Tourism degree program can be tailored to your interests. Do not limit yourself to one facet of one industry. Explore your options to make the most of your resources.”