Career Goals of Chinese International Tourism and Hospitality Students in Australia

  • Katrine Sonnenschein
Part of the Perspectives on Asian Tourism book series (PAT)


Research on the career aspirations of university students has typically focused on general career expectations rather than specific goals such as job positions and salaries. In particular, there is a lack in the body of knowledge regarding the career goals of Chinese international students studying tourism and hospitality. In Australia, hospitality management was the sixth most popular degree among Chinese international university students within business and commerce in 2016. Due to the popularity of the tourism and hospitality programmes among Chinese international students and the booming tourism and hospitality job market in China, it is necessary to undertake research into the career goals of these students. Evidence from 15 semi-structured interviews with Chinese international students enrolled in an Australian tourism and hospitality degree is presented. The findings demonstrate that most students changed their career goals during their studies. Some students also developed clearer career aspirations during their enrolment. The study has found that in order to provide students with more realistic insights into work requirements in the tourism and hospitality industry, a strong collaboration between university and industry is crucial. Finally, the findings show that academics play an important role in assisting students to develop realistic expectations about their future careers and to discover where their genuine interests lie.


Career goals Career aspirations Tourism and hospitality management education Chinese international students Generation Y Work-integrated learning 


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Copyright information

© Springer Nature Singapore Pte Ltd. 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Learning and PhilosophyAalborg UniversityNathanAustralia

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