ORLANDO, Fla. — In Central Florida, we’ve seen the tourism industry get crushed by the pandemic.
Now, UCF has a new degree that is helping hospitality students shift their talents to the growing health care industry.
This is the first degree of its kind in Florida.
The students are taking courses in health care, geriatrics and hospitality management to prepare them for some well-paid managerial style jobs in a booming industry.
It’s typically a time for tourism and travel, but the hospitality industry has been hit hard this year.
Dr. Abraham Pizam of UCF Rosen College of Hospitality Management said, “It’s been disastrous, I have to admit.”
The pandemic has put hotels, theme parks and resorts in a tight spot, forcing companies to let go of valued employees.
And although his field is flipped upside down right now and decimated, Pizam introduced a new track within UCF’s Rosen College of Hospitality Management.
He said, “The industry has been really negatively impacted, but from a point of view of this particular degree, it’s the opposite.”
Pizam said, “This is the first degree that is a blend of hospitality and health care.”
He also said there’s a promising job market awaiting these graduates due to the increasing demand for senior living communities.
The Orlando Business Journal reports there is at least $500 million worth of senior housing projects currently in the works in our region and some of these places are pretty posh.
There’s also a 43-acre planned senior living community affiliated with UCF that is under construction right now.
See the full report in the video above.
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