Swiss Hotel Management School creates special programs which cater to various needs and personalized education for students of different career backgrounds. This allows for hospitality training specifically made to deliver what any kind of student is looking for.
Swiss Hotel Management School (SHMS) stands at the forefront of hospitality education, offering an array of specialized programs that cater to a diverse range of career aspirations and backgrounds. With two campuses equipped with state-of-the-art facilities, the school presents a unique blend of traditional Swiss hospitality training and innovative educational practices. While each campus is home to several different accredited programs, such as the Bachelor’s Degree in International Hospitality Management or the online master’s program meant for actively working professionals deepening their knowledge to progress their careers, SHMS also offers a range of lesser-known specialized programs which cater to a diverse range of career aspirations and backgrounds. The school’s two campuses are not just educational hubs but incubators of future hospitality leaders.
SHMS understands that the journey to a successful career in hospitality isn’t one-size-fits-all. Our approach to education is deeply rooted in the belief that personalized training is key to unlocking the full potential of each student. Whether you are a recent high school graduate, an experienced professional seeking further development, or someone looking to switch careers, our tailor-made programs are designed to meet your specific educational and career needs. Most students at our campuses can find what they need within our accredited programs, which already have specializations such as event management or luxury brand management. Other groups of students need programs that are completely formed from the ground up to be tailored for specific training, and these are what we call our Special Programs.
These tailor-made programs specifically deliver training to fill a necessary gap in the experience or knowledge of people who have already worked in the industry but need broader training in a different niche. Hospitality know-how, especially in international settings at very high standards, requires a more well-rounded education that work experience may not cover. Recognizing the ever-evolving needs of the hospitality industry, SHMS has developed these programs to address specific training requirements. These tailor-made programs are a response to the industry’s demand for specialized skills and knowledge.
For instance, one of our current Special Programs involves a group of hospitality professionals who have worked in-depth in the Middle East but are seeking to broaden their international experience to become better prepared for receiving international guests, especially those from a culture very different from their own. When greeting a Japanese dignitary, would one expect to shake hands, or bow? Is it polite to make eye contact with someone, or cross your hands behind your back? These students learn about different cultures around the world as well as the types of service expected for different situations – for example, the difference between French and Russian table services. In addition, these students learn what it means to have world-class Swiss Hospitality Touch.
Beyond cultural differences, the students in this special program also learned about niche topics such as nutritional health and dietary restrictions and needs, which become increasingly important as people become more and more aware of what they put in their bodies and what is best for every individual’s personal health. Even though the students have worked with Food and Beverage, their work experience alone does not comprehensively cover the necessary know-how to be prepared for every scenario, because if they had never encountered a situation that needed special attention, they may not even know that the situation is possible. With the Special Program, their education is meant to cover all the scenarios and how to be prepared, to have the know-how, to handle it properly.
Former Special Programs Leader and current SHMS Program Manager Vanessa Mendes says that when leading this program, her hopes were to instill self-reflection, interpersonal development, and leadership in the students within an international environment. “Students are required not just to meet people from different cultures, but successfully work with them,” she explains. “They have to learn how to operate outside of their comfort zones.” This kind of training is particularly important for events or hospitality teams who travel to different locations around the world and must collaborate with external staff beyond their immediate team.
The cultural learning went both ways. What was most rewarding to Ms. Mendes from managing the program with the Middle Eastern hospitality professionals was discovering their culture and knowing them as individuals who, while having intense loyalty to and support of one another, were also very inviting and warm. “They have very high standards that align very nicely with the values of our school,” says Ms. Mendes.
The SHMS advantage lies in our comprehensive approach to hospitality education. We combine theoretical knowledge with practical skills, personal development with professional networking, and traditional Swiss hospitality with innovative global trends. Lecturers at SHMS come from the industry; they are experts in their fields and have worked in hospitality, marketing, design, and other sectors for years before they find their calling to teach the next generation of industry leaders. This holistic approach ensures that SHMS students are not just ready for their first job in hospitality but are prepared for a successful and fulfilling career.
In addition, both campuses of SHMS boast facilities that are nothing short of the best environments to learn the ins and outs of hospitality. Our state-of-the-art classrooms, practical labs, and real-world training environments ensure that students get the most out of their educational experience.
The Caux campus, set in a former palace hotel, offers a unique blend of historical charm on the outside and modern educational facilities on the inside. Here, students can immerse themselves in a learning environment that mirrors real-world hospitality settings. The campus boasts state-of-the-art computer labs, demonstration kitchens, and a classic fine -dining restaurant. This campus provides an ideal setting for students to immerse themselves in the rich history of Swiss hospitality, offering a real-life context to their learning.
On the other hand, the Leysin campus, located in a modernized former hotel and the first winter Club Med in the world, provides an innovative learning environment. It houses advanced culinary facilities, a completely decked-out film studio room, and a full-service spa and wellness center, providing students with hands-on experience in these specialized fields. It is particularly suited for specializations like event management, where students can utilize contemporary spaces to simulate and plan actual events across two different buildings that make up the campus.
Current Special Programs Leader Radu Botnari has been working with new groups on the SHMS campus who have come to complement their industry experience with a thorough and extensive education, tailor-made to their needs. “Our goal is to elevate each participant to another level, surpassing their existing experience and knowledge,” Mr. Botnari emphasizes. Whatever students learn in the special programs can be shared and built upon wherever they choose to work during the course of their careers. “We aim to cultivate not only knowledge but also a profound sense of value in their studies, enabling them to share this newfound wisdom with their teams. By doing so, we believe in cultivating not just skilled professionals but visionary leaders who play a pivotal role in shaping the future of the hospitality experience on-site.”
Choosing to study at SHMS is more than just choosing a school; it's choosing to be part of a family that is passionate about hospitality. It's an opportunity to learn from the best, to grow as a professional and as an individual, and to embark on a journey that is both challenging and rewarding.
Our specialized programs, state-of-the-art facilities, and focus on personalized learning ensure that our students are well-prepared to meet the demands of the hospitality industry. As SHMS continues to evolve and adapt, we remain committed to our vision of nurturing the next generation of hospitality leaders, ready to make a lasting impact in the world.
We continuously innovate our curriculum and teaching methods to stay ahead of industry trends. Our collaboration with industry experts, alumni, and leading hospitality organizations ensures that our programs remain relevant, practical, and forward-thinking. Our specialized programs come from looking at current practices and trends to ascertain the needs of the industry. We are committed to providing an education tailored to every need that is both timeless in its principles and contemporary in its application.