Tourism-Related Studies

For students seeking a future in the tourism and hospitality industry, Cape Breton University offers numerous and varied study options.

The following programs are supported by the Shannon School of Business (SSOB) at Cape Breton University.


At the Shannon School of Business, priority is given to maintaining close ties with the local business community, providing the chance to learn first-hand from our best and brightest business leaders and entrepreneurs. Our faculty is made up of skilled practitioners and accomplished academics, who have practiced on Cape Breton Island and around the world. The vibrant and creative tourism and hospitality industry on Cape Breton Island provides exciting opportunities for collaboration, problem-solving and open career pathways for our students and, of course, our graduates. Student and alumni success is truly international in scope, with internships and employer relationships spanning the globe.

Bachelor of Hospitality and Tourism Management (BHTM) is a three-year undergraduate degree that combines classroom and lab instruction with two paid internships. Popular with international students, the BHTM program allows students to graduate with both a world-class education and valuable work experience to strengthen their resume and ensure they are well on their way to career success.

Bachelor of Business Administration (BBA) degree with a Concentration in Tourism is a great choice for business students with an interest in the tourism industry. While studying human resources, organizational management and international business, students can also focus on tourism operations, destination marketing and international tourism.

Master of Business Administration in Community Economic Development (MBA CED) is unique in Canada. Launched in 1997, its focus is on community economic development, supporting students who want to make a difference where they live and work. This is a very popular program with professionals and mature learners who hold or seek, leadership roles in their businesses and communities. There are several options students can choose from such as Marketing and International Business however there is a Tourism option as well as a First Nations Option.

The MBA CED First Nations Option invites students to explore the Dynamics of CED in Urban and Rural First Nations and the MBA CED Tourism Option examines Tourism Management & Planning and Cultural Tourism Marketing.


The following programs are supported by the School of Arts and Social Sciences (SASS) at Cape Breton University.

The School of Arts and Social Sciences (SASS) provides a strong foundation for varied and broad opportunities in Community Studies, Culture, Heritage, Music, Mi’kmaw Studies, Applied Theatre, Languages, Sports and Recreation and more. Whether it is full-time, part-time, three or four years, SASS degrees and programs are flexible.

CBU’s School of Arts and Social Sciences has community-oriented and experiential learning at the forefront of most degrees and programs. Fostering close community relationships, SASS students have the opportunity to earn hands-on experiences during their studies through volunteering hours, in-field research or community-based projects. Co-op programs, internships, work placements and exchanges offered nearby or abroad are also available to SASS students.

Bachelor of Arts (BA) offers diverse perspectives, ideas and traditions. With a BA from CBU, students have an exciting, contemporary and challenging opportunity to learn about the world around them. By gaining the knowledge, leadership skills and critical thinking required to succeed in the real world, students adopt a cross-cultural perspective that’s truly unique to Cape Breton University. There are numerous options for students who may wish to explore a wide variety of studies that are components of a global tourism sector.

Bachelor of Arts Community Studies (BACS) is a highly flexible program encouraging students to explore their varying career and life goals. The program is a process-oriented, experiential degree program that prepares students for the job market. The core community studies courses are focused on problem-solving, critical thinking, community-based research and work placements.

BACS students can pursue their interests in a variety of tourism-related topics such as Folklore, History, Music, Communication, Mi’kmaq Culture, Mi’kmaq Tourism, Sport and Physical Activity, Human Resources and Marketing and Management. Students from around the world come to CBU to partake in a participatory and experiential curriculum. This enables students to engage with their communities and familiarize themselves with a workplace environment.

Bachelor of Arts Community Studies (BACS) Sport and Physical Activity Leadership (SPAL) appeals to students who want to pursue sport and activity careers. It is Canada’s only program that focuses on sport and physical activity combined with community-focused problem-based learning at its core. Learning options are offered in four key areas: coaching, outdoor leadership, health and wellness and sport management and administration.

Bachelor of Arts Community Studies (BACS) Applied Theatre teaches students how to apply theatre skills to a variety of disciplines such as history, business and, of course, tourism.

Bachelor of Arts Community Studies (BACS) Music celebrates Cape Breton’s rich traditional cultures including Celtic, Acadian and Mi’kmaw. Students can choose to immerse themselves in new cultures through international exchanges or practice, perform and learn in state-of-the-art music and dance studios, a recording studio and rich archives all on campus.

Bachelor of Arts and Science in Environment immerses students in three streams simultaneously: a science concentration; an arts/social science concentration; and a core set of environment-themed courses specially designed for this program.

Each year, the themes of these courses may change to reflect our world-class faculty’s specialties or timely environmental issues. Respect for, and inclusion of, Indigenous knowledge is a guiding principle of BASE. All students will have the opportunity to take Mi’kmaq Studies courses toward their degree, preparing them to be active and responsible agents in the development of sustainable environmental practices.

Certificate in Mi’kmaq Cultural Heritage Preservation is a perfect study choice for students with an interest in Mi’kmaw history, language, culture, traditions and socio-economic development of the Mi’kmaq First Nation.

Certificate in Heritage Studies is designed in response to increased opportunities for employment in the field of arts, administration, heritage promotion, cultural promotion, cultural programming and multiculturalism.  

Certificate in Applied Theatre helps students adapt practical theatre skills to achieve individual goals in non-traditional performance contexts and styles. Students could work as an animator at a living history site, use theatre to raise awareness around social issues, create experiences that build or celebrate community, engage youth in learning opportunities and help at-risk populations develop skills and build support networks.

Certificate in Folklore explores story and song, festival and feast, architecture and craft. Although these forms may be manifested distinctly by each group, they recur in similar ways across cultures, so folklore examines both the particular context and the general formal patterns of expressive culture.

Visit our Academic Program page to view all CBU programs, or continue on to Tourism-Related (Academic) Resources to learn more about supports available to our students, researchers and community.