Globe trotting HRTM students complete internships

Globe trotting HRTM students complete internships

11 Jul 2013    

Students in the Hospitality, Restaurant and Tourism Management major at the University of Nebraska–Lincoln have spent the summer in internships across the U.S. and in points across the globe including Germany, France, Ireland, England, Africa, China and New Zealand. This week, 114 HRTM students are completing a required internship, as part of 700 hours of industry experience needed for their undergraduate degree.

“Internships are an important part of a student’s educational experience and helps a student build their resume, link what they’ve learned in the classroom with real world experiences, gives them an opportunity to network with industry professionals, and to confirm their career interests,” says Shannon Rowen, assistant professor of practice in the department of Nutrition and Health Sciences. “Employers have told me on many occasions that they strongly consider internship experiences in making hiring decisions.”

The College of Education and Human Sciences and the College of Agricultural Sciences and Natural Resources jointly offer the Hospitality, Restaurant and Tourism Management program, which was new to UNL in 2006. It requires students to work closely with HRTM faculty to explore areas of interest and provides a wide range of exciting and unique opportunities.

In addition to international locations, students in the HRTM program completed internships this summer right here in Lincoln and elsewhere in Nebraska and the U.S. with companies and organizations such as: Discovery Communications, College World Series, Hilton Hotels, Camp Ronald McDonald, Country Club of Lincoln, Omaha Convention and Visitors Bureau and Sheldon Art Museum.

HRTM student Brei Wagner, a senior from Plattsmouth, Neb., interned in Dublin, Ireland helping plan events such as the 38th Annual Meeting of the International Urogynecological Association in Dublin. The medical conference attracts over 2,000 physicians and nurses from all over the world.

“Taking the risk to pursue an internship abroad has been one of the most rewarding and enlightening decisions I have ever made,” said Wagner. “The experience I have gained at my internship along with the independence and new perspectives from living in a foreign country will benefit me in my future endeavors.  I was exposed to a different culture and able to form relationships that will assist me in my career and personal goals.”

Junior Brianna Gentert from Holstein, Neb. interned in Cannes, France at the Cannes Film Festival through American Pavilion Student Programs. Gentert joined other HRTM students Colbi Duren, Michela Coniglio, Dustin Bowder, and Kellie Ballou for 15 days in the south of France networking and gaining hands-on experience in hospitality.

"Traveling abroad for an internship at the Cannes Film Festival was truly a once in a lifetime opportunity, with many once in a lifetime experiences,” said Gentert.  “It was definitely a worth-while experience that I would highly recommend to anyone."

Hannah Kamprath, a senior from Seward, Neb., spent time in Luebben, Germany working for Der Spreewalder Dekoration and Event – Floristik, an event management company. Kamprath discovered key learning points in communication and management.

“My internship experience has taught me to value the importance of silent communication—listening to a guest’s body language and tone of voice when helping them,” she said. “I have learned that not all businesses operate on a set schedule and being able to adapt to chaotic environments in a successful way makes you a valuable asset to the business. Finally, my internship opened my eyes to the different types of management styles an employer can have and the effects when the manager doesn't adapt their management style to fit the employee.”

The bachelor of arts degree in Hospitality, Restaurant and Tourism Management prepares individuals to serve as general managers and directors of hospitality operations by providing an excellent foundation in hospitality, leadership and business. The program integrates hospitality marketing strategies, communications, and financial management into a curriculum focused on managing facilities and operations that provide hospitality services to the public. For more information visit or contact program director, Marilynn Schnepf at 402-472-3735 or


College of Education and Human Sciences
Nutrition and Health Sciences
Hospitality, Restaurant and Tourism Management