Hospitality and Tourism Degrees and Certificates > Hospitality, Exhibitions and Event Management > Get Started in Hospitality, Exhibitions and Event Management

Get Started in Hospitality, Exhibitions and Event Management

How to Get Started

Complete the admissions process and meet with an academic advisor.


Compare that to what you’d pay elsewhere! See our tuition rates for tuition according to your place of residency.

Rising Star Program

If you are a Dallas County high school graduating senior, you may qualify for Rising Star funds to help pay for this program. The Rising Star program offers academic support services and up to $4,000 for tuition and books, if you have established financial need.

Accreditation and Affiliations

Find out more about accreditation and affiliations.

Advisory Board and Association With Industry Organizations

An advisory board (PDF – 23KB) of respected local industry professionals counsels and advises the program.

The HEEM program is a member of:

HEEM Information Sessions

Twice a year, in the summer and fall, HEEM information sessions are offered by Richland instructors with industry leaders to discuss:

  • Career opportunities
  • Educational pathways to various careers in the industry
  • Industry trends
  • Skills required for success in the travel profession

Sessions provide details on careers related to the tourism and hospitality industry, including:

  • Meeting and event planner
  • Trade show and exposition manager
  • Travel agent
  • Hospitality
  • Wedding planning

For details or specific dates on information sessions, please contact M.T. Hickman. Students considering entering the program in a fall semester should attend a summer information session; students planning to start in a spring semester should attend a fall information session.

Developing Skills for Success

HEEM Mentor Program

The HEEM Connecting Generations Mentor Program pairs students with industry leaders. Students participating in this program join their mentors at industry events, communicate with them to discuss various class projects and spend time shadowing their mentors.

HEEM Club @ Richland College

The HEEM Club @ Richland College provides students extracurricular opportunities that include competition, leadership, hands-on experience and networking. Activities include:

  • Familiarization or "fam" trips: short, activity-packed destination excursions
  • Fundraising activities
  • General activities, including private tours and professional organization events
  • Social events
  • Opportunities to volunteer in the professional community to work at staff meetings, conventions and special events

Annual Scholarship Luncheon and Silent Auction

Students get hands-on experience by planning the annual HEEM scholarship luncheon and silent auction. The event also provides opportunities for HEEM students to network with industry professionals. The silent auction raises money for HEEM student scholarships and area high school students studying tourism and hospitality are invited to attend this cross-generational experience.

Scholarship Opportunities for HEEM Students

The Joe Cortina TEMM Student Travel and Professional Development Fund offers students access to up to $200 in funds for course-related travel and professional development, including:

  • Registration fees for conferences and seminars
  • Transportation expenses to conferences and seminars
  • Admission fees for expositions and conventions
  • Fees for familiarization trips
  • Student memberships for industry organizations

The HEEM Club @ Richland College offers renewable scholarships requiring a 3.0 grade point average maintained in HEEM classes for:

  • High school graduates or high school seniors who have taken tourism and hospitality classes
  • Dallas County residents taking HEEM classes
  • Out-of-district residents taking HEEM classes
  • International students on F1 visas taking HEEM classes

Industry organizations also offer scholarships to HEEM students:

  • The Educational Foundation of the American Hotel & Lodging Association distributed more than $568,000 in scholarships to more than 350 students and hospitality professionals in 2008 across the U.S. It awards academic scholarships to students enrolled in U.S. undergraduate or graduate programs in hotel and restaurant management, culinary arts, travel and tourism and hotel administration.  
  • Hospitality Sales and Marketing Association International has been providing scholarships since 1983 to students pursuing careers in hospitality sales and marketing. It also awards merit scholarships to full-time students in baccalaureate and graduate degree programs, as well as to part-time students in associate degree, baccalaureate and graduate programs.
  • Tourism Cares awards several academic scholarships as part of the National Tour Association Scholarship Fund and American Society of Travel Agents Scholarship Fund.
  • The Professional Conference Managers Association offers a variety of scholarships for academics and to attend industry events.
  • Meeting Professionals International provides grants and scholarships for MPI members in three categories: academics, professional development and MPI programs for leadership opportunities.

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Related Programs

Check out other programs in Hospitality or Management and Business Administration.

Other Degree and Certificate Options

See a chart of degree plans by college or visit the credit programs home page.

Faculty Profiles

Our Hospitality, Exhibitions and Event Management faculty members have not only advanced degrees but also real-world experience, which makes them able to relate to the challenges you will face in this career field. Our instructors work closely with you one-on-one, encouraging you and helping you to succeed in school and in your career.

See profiles of some of our Hospitality, Exhibitions and Event Management faculty.

Transfer Information

HEEM courses are designed for direct entry into the workforce. However, if you are interested in earning a degree at a four-year institution, please visit the Transfer Services website for guidance on the transfer process.

Several four-year institutions of higher education in Texas offer related bachelor’s degrees. Each institution will review your transcript on an individual basis to determine which courses will transfer. Related bachelor’s degrees are offered at:

Links to Related Information

See links to more information about HEEM industry certifications, organizations and informational sites.

Contact Us

If you have questions about the Hospitality, Exhibitions and Event Management program that aren’t answered on our website, please feel free to contact us.