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Updated: December 27, 2023

Unity Environmental University will offer program on ‘regenerative’ hospitality and tourism

Courtesy / Unity Environmental University Unity Environmental University’s new degree programs in tourism destination management and regenerative hotel management seek to balance community vitality, environmental conservation and economic viability. Its Pineland Farms campus is in New Gloucester.

A new line of programming at Unity Environmental University aims to serve Maine’s growing hospitality and tourism industry.

The New Gloucester-based institution launched online bachelor of science degree programs in tourism destination management and regenerative hotel management.

The sustainability principles balance community and economic vitality with environmental conservation and the notion that tourism should be responsible and create a net positive effect on the destination.

“We are committed to nurturing individuals who are not just career-ready but are also equipped to make a meaningful impact in the world of sustainable travel and conservation,” said Lydia Horne, Unity’s associate director of sustainable ecotourism and recreation programs.

The tourism destination management program aims to address global issues like climate change, biodiversity loss and cultural preservation through sustainable travel experiences. The goal is to help students learn to balance local development needs, sustainable resource use and economic security by designing and evaluating tourism experiences using regenerative principles. 

The regenerative hotel management program stems from a demand for sustainable travel options and aims to prepare students to lead in eco-friendly hospitality management. The course covers sustainable hospitality, supply chain management, service, climate change, circular product management, waste reduction and culturally enriching travel experiences. 

person smiling
Courtesy / Unity Environmental University
Melik Peter Khoury

“As an industry, there have been some significant improvements to make tourism more sustainable. However, a lot of work remains if the industry is going to be part of the solution to global socio-ecological challenges,” said Horne. “Having a workforce that understands the tourism and hospitality industry and the challenges and opportunities around sustainability will enable an industry-wide shift toward regenerative practices.”

Plans are underway to introduce graduate-level programs in the fields.

The programs herald additional educational offerings, ranging from food sciences to natural resource conservation and management, said Melik Peter Khoury, Unity’s president and CEO. 

“Our goal is to educate a new class of environmental superheroes, prepared to tackle the complex challenges of our time,” he said.

Unity’s online programs serve over 7,500 students nationwide.

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