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Business - Tourism

Build a career that focuses on the recreation, entertainment, event and travel sectors of the tourism industry.

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Start Date:
Typical Length:
2 Years

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Pursue your passion for adventure and travel while meeting new people and gaining job-ready skills in a hands-on learning environment connected to industry.

Learn the processes and best practices involved in creating, developing and managing visitor experiences, strategies for providing culturally-relevant customer service, and entrepreneurial business practices – from human resources and leadership to finances and strategic marketing.

In addition to a focus on the recreation, entertainment, event and travel sectors of the tourism industry, this program introduces you to the operational and management skills and concepts of accommodations and foodservice operations.

Explore a day in the life of a student

Join Gabe as he goes on a familiarity tour of Nova Scotia’s South Shore with his Business – Tourism class. Read Gabe’s #DayInTheLife blog

Co-operative education

  • This program includes a mandatory co-operative education (co-op) credit course.
    • Co-op placements provide the opportunity for paid, full-time work in a field related to your program.
    • Co-op takes place in the third and fourth terms and must be a minimum of 600 hours.
    • Our co-op program follows Co-operative Education and Work-Integrated Learning Canada (CEWIL) guidelines.
  • Transportation, accommodations and other costs related to work experience are your responsibility.
  • For more information, visit work experience opportunities.

Study options

  • This program offers an elective that allows students to participate in an International Learning Expedition course during the spring term of the second year of study. Additional fees apply for participation in this elective.

Choose NSCC

  • This program was developed with industry – for industry, ensuring your skills are current and relevant.
  • Our instructors have world-class experience and skills.
  • You'll have many opportunities to network with tourism industry partners both on and off campus.
  • Participate in local and/or provincial tourism activities and events, such as active exploration projects, event management opportunities, excursions, networking with industry partners, and many other progressive learning experiences. In this program, you'll have the opportunity to be involved in the annual Tourism Industry Association of Nova Scotia (TIANS) conference.
  • You experience hands-on learning and real-world business environments through our on-campus restaurant, labs, simulations, project-based learning, applied learning, service learning, collaborative learning and mentorship activities.
  • You develop an awareness of the global economy, corporate social responsibility, and green business practices. You also develop the skills and professionalism you need to work in a business world that focuses on people, organizations, strategy and leadership.
  • You learn the latest practices and technologies that employers and business owners in Nova Scotia, across Canada and around the world are looking for in their future employees and partners.
  • You learn in small classes, from experienced instructors.
  • You graduate well-prepared with workplace ready skills to provide a broad range of services to businesses of many sizes.
  • Our programs and faculty maintain strong community and industry connections and use a proactive approach to prepare students for industry trends and demands.
  • You get access to other exciting learning opportunities beyond your program such as international learning programs and entrepreneurship workshops.

Other info

  • A strong work ethic and a professional approach are key elements to your success in this program and career.
  • Punctuality and attention to cleanliness are absolute necessities.
  • As this program mirrors working in industry, you should be prepared to work industry-type hours, including early mornings, late nights and some weekends.
  • If you have food allergies, dietary requirements or sensitivities to environmental conditions, be aware that you'll frequently be exposed to substances that may affect these sensitivities.


Seats are available at Akerley campus for domestic applicants only. International applicants will be waitlisted.

September 2024

Campus Full time/part time Delivery Availability
Akerley Campus
Full time In person
Delivered in-person. Some courses may have online elements.
Seats available

Admission requirements

Program requirements

  • You're required to complete industry seminars and certifications, including Responsible Beverage Service, Basic Food Safety and Emergency First Aid, CPR Level A (or Wilderness and Remote First Aid).
    • Additional certifications may be required depending on the electives you choose.
    • There may be additional fees associated with seminars or certifications related to your electives.
  • Portfolio development – As part of your studies at NSCC, you develop a portfolio of your work; the portfolio captures your achievements and profiles your skills to employers.


Tuition amounts are for the 2023-24 academic year. Program costs and fees (textbooks, supplies, etc.) are additional.

Tuition (Domestic):
Tuition (International):

Tuition, fees and program costs

In addition to annual tuition, there are program costs (books, tools, etc.) and student fees for College services, health and dental plans, your student association and parking.

View detailed program fees page(s). Please note that amounts on these pages are meant for planning purposes only. They don't represent final amounts owing.

Career options

  • Whether you seek employment with tourism operators, community or government agencies, or are interested in creating your own business to showcase your passion for experiences in tourism, your range of career options is as varied as the industry itself. You can work in:
    • Outdoor adventure
    • Cultural and heritage tourism
    • The airline or cruise ship sector
    • Visitor services
    • Attractions
    • The craft beverage sector
  • In the next decade, Nova Scotia will need thousands of new and highly skilled employees, across all tourism sectors. The Canadian Tourism Human Resource Council (CTHRC) estimates 240,000 jobs will be available in the tourism industry by 2035. (CTHRC 2015).

Future study options

  • Graduates of the Tourism Hospitality program can apply for advanced standing to the second year of the Event Management Graduate Certificate program. This program prepares you to begin a career in the tourism industry with a focus on events such as:
    • Festivals
    • Weddings
    • Conferences, tradeshows and meetings
  • Continue your studies at university – This program includes courses that count towards a university degree. Learn more about having your diploma count towards a university degree


Courses may include

These are some of the courses offered in this program. It is not a complete list and courses are subject to change in advance of the academic year.

Recognizing prior learning / transfer credits
If you have previous learning (course, employment, etc...) that's relevant to your program, you may be able to apply to earn credit. Not all programs are eligible. Learn about our recognizing prior learning (RPL) process.

ACTG 1015 - Basic Accounting for Managers
This course introduces learners to the role that accounting plays in the managerial decision making process. Learners will have an opportunity to create financial statements and learn how business decisions are influenced from a financial perspective.

BSTM 2280 - International Tourism Destinations and Trends
In this course, students will research destinations and trends to better understand how these impact travel behaviour. Emphasis is placed on where countries are located, travel itinerary planning and factors that influence international tourism.

BSTM 2300 - Community Tourism Planning
This course focuses on the skills required for creating community partnerships in tourism. The student will have an opportunity to partner with local groups to assess a community's potential for tourism development. This is a project-based course that will provide the learner with an opportunity to identify the needs and strengths of a community and research visitor experiences.

BSTM 2410 - Festival and Event Planning
In this course, students will evaluate the cultural, social and economic benefits that festivals and events have on a community or destination. Students will explore event logistics, budgeting, project management, procurement, risk management and volunteer coordination/management.

BSTM 4000 - Applied Tourism Development
This project-based capstone course allows learners to apply their accumulated skills and knowledge to develop a tourism business plan. Learners will focus on developing tourism products and/or experiences according to a destinations’ corporate strategy.

COMM 1205 - Communications - Workplace Foundations
Effective communication is fundamental to career success. This course will apply the communication cycle to improve the impact of written messages, presentations, and interpersonal interactions.

COMM 2220 - Applied Managerial Communications
This course focuses on the communication strategies necessary to manage internal and external communication systems within a tourism organization. Topics will include communication models, management communication styles and organizational approaches to successfully manage communication.

COMP 2050 - Business Computer Applications II
This course expands on Business Computer Applications I by introducing new skills. By the end of the course, you will be able to design a basic database, enhance spreadsheets, create templates to increase efficiency, and collaborate to create and review shared documents.

ENTR 2000 - Foundations of Entrepreneurship
No matter the career path, entrepreneurial concepts and characteristics are essential to success. This course will introduce learners to foundational principles of entrepreneurship and the different context in which these principles can be applied. Topics include starting or seeking employment in a small business, recognizing different types of business structures, and identifying legal and financial considerations affecting small businesses. You will explore the value and benefits of being a business owner or an employee of an entrepreneur. This course will help you identify the expertise and resources that are needed to build your entrepreneurial spirit.

FANM 9000 - Food Safety Training
Working with food requires knowledge of relevant legislation, codes, and safe food practices to keep staff and customers safe. This course provides information on cleaning and sanitation, food storage and receiving and food borne illnesses.

FINC 2300 - Finance for Tourism
This course is centred on the application of managerial accounting principles and techniques to enhance managerial functions. The student will examine the managerial decision making process and the interpretation of financial statements.

LEGL 1250 - Tourism Law
This course outlines Canadian law applicable to the tourism and hospitality industry. It identifies areas where there may be potential legal problems and discusses rights and liabilities relative to relationships within the tourism industry.

MGMT 2040 - Human Resource Management for Tourism
This course focuses on the critical issues that concern managers in the tourism industry. One of the greatest challenges in providing memorable experiences to guests in the tourism industry is the management of a firm's human capital. Students will explore recruiting, training, hiring, record keeping, union, compensation, job descriptors and contracts.

MKTG 2700 - Digital Marketing for Tourism
This course provides an introduction to the business of doing business online. Students will have the opportunity to critically examine various forms of marketing communications as well as gain hands-on experience in developing promotional tools. Topics will include online exploring, discussing and using current online tools and software.

SAFE 1000 - Introduction to WHMIS (Workplace Hazardous Materials Information Systems)
This course offers learners basic overview of WHMIS principles and establishes a solid foundation to support workplace-specific training on the safe storage and handling of controlled/hazardous products. Upon successful completion of the course, students receive basic WHMIS certification.

SAFE 1001 - Introduction to NS OH&S Act
This course offers students an introduction to the Occupational Health & Safety (OH&S) Act of Nova Scotia, which is required by any person employed in a Nova Scotia workplace. This is a generic, introductory course that provides basic knowledge of the Act for students and is considered to be the basis from which more specific training can be given.

TOUR 2996COOP - Cooperative Education A
Cooperative education is one of the most valuable and memorable experiences for students. Students will have opportunity to work for major companies provincially and regionally, as well as across Canada and internationally. This is a course of 425 hours spread over 15 weeks between year one and year two beginning in May.

TOUR 2997COOP - Cooperative Education B
Cooperative education is one of the most valuable and memorable experiences for students. Students will have opportunity to work for major companies provincially and regionally, as well as across Canada and internationally. This is a course of 175 hours spread over 5 weeks between year one and year two beginning in Sept.

TRHS 1000 - Introduction to Tourism
The learner will explore regional as well as global issues and trends in tourism. This exploration will begin with an examination of the Nova Scotia tourism sector, how it operates and what roles the learner may wish to pursue for further study and employment. This course will also focus on the economic, socio-cultural and environmental impact of tourism and tourism development from a national and global perspective.

TRHS 1020 - Guest Service Essentials
Tourism is a service based industry. This course is aimed at identifying and applying service techniques that consistently meet industry standards and customer needs. Service excellence is an integral part of attracting and retaining customers. Industry standards and personal management skills will be examined and applied.

TRHS 1030 - Food and Beverage Service Foundations
In this course, learners will gain a basic understanding of the principles of food and beverage operations. Using an applied approach, learners will explore service styles, bartending skills and a variety of foodservice operations.

TRHS 1040 - Introduction to Tourism Marketing
In this course, learners will explore consumer behaviour, marketing research, branding and consumer travel trends, as well as unique aspects of the tourism industry. Learners will also be introduced to marketing strategies and opportunities in the context of social media.

TRHS 1200 - Accommodations
This course is designed to provide the learner with an understanding of roles, contributions and responsibilities of the various departments in the successful operation of a hotel, resort, or inn. Learners will practice systems, procedures and communication techniques that ensure professional guest service throughout the guest cycle.

TRHS 1240 - Wine, Spirits and Beer Fundamentals
This course is an introduction to a variety of beverages and their production. Topics will include new trends in the beverage industry, wine producing regions of Nova Scotia and beyond, and food and beverage pairing.

TRHS 1250 - Leadership Essentials and Group Dynamics
In this course, you will explore the role of leadership within tourism and hospitality industries with an emphasis on strategic management. You will develop an awareness of the characteristics needed to be a successful leader. Topics will include leadership styles, group dynamics and conflict resolution.

TRHS 1260 - Nova Scotia Tourism
This course introduces the learner to Nova Scotia's environments, natural and cultural history, and their influences on provincial tourism. Using an applied learning approach, learners will also explore the principles of guiding and interpretation.

Business - Tourism Elective Course Requirement. Students must take four credits from a prescribed list of courses.

In addition to their required courses, learners will complete four credits of directed elective credit in a BUCI, or LANG subject area or as approved by the Academic Chair and in line with their program of study or COMP1050.

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