Helping Our Own Go Further

Certifications from the American Hotel & Lodging Association
are the ultimate distinction of professional excellence in the
hospitality industry. Certifications are offered for more than
a dozen positions in the hospitality industry, including the
prestigious CHA®-Certified Hotel Administrator.                  

Click Here to Apply

Get Certified

Our professional development scholarships are exclusively for individuals currently working at a hotel who want to advance their career. These scholarships enable them to grow their industry knowledge and enhance their professional skills. They also cover the cost of professional certifications recipients earn. 

Application deadlines are quarterly: January 1, April 1, July 1, and October 1.

Eligibility Criteria

  • Working a minimum of 35 hours per week at an AHLA member hotel with at least 12 months of hotel experience. If you need to confirm your hotel is a member, contact AHLA’s membership department at (202)-289-3100 or
  • Some certifications have minimum qualifications that must be met. The certification process is administered through the American Hotel & Lodging Educational Institute.  Visit AHLEI’s Website for a complete list of certifications and to review the qualifications for each.  

Application Process

Applicants must complete the online scholarship application. There is no need to complete a certification application on AHLEI's website. All applications will be evaluated according to industry-related work experience; professional, community, and extracurricular activities; and personal attributes, including career goals as expressed in a required essay. Scholarships are awarded on a quarterly basis, with application deadline dates of January 1, April 1, July 1, and October 1. Applicants will be notified within 30 days after application is received.

Scholarship Awards

Scholarships cover the cost of the certification study guide (if applicable), examination fee, and certification fee. AHLEF will reimburse AHLEI directly for the costs of all professional development scholarships.

Financial support for the scholarship program is provided by: 

  • Jack Vaughn Scholarship Fund
  • American Express Scholarship Fund
  • Ecolab Scholarship Fund 
  • Proceeds from previous capital giving campaigns such as Opening Doors to Opportunity

Our donors give generously. We thank them sincerely.

Opening Doors to Opportunity

  • Minibar Systems
  • Ruckus Wireless Inc.
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  • Nalco Company
  • Handlery Foundation
  • American Hotel Register Company
  • Davidson Hotels & Resorts
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  • Salto Systems
  • Hersha Hospitality Trust
  • STR
  • Omni Hotels
  • RDI (Rank Distributors Inc.)
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  • Jim & Adele Abrahamson
  • Four Seasons Hotels & Resorts
  • Towne Park
  • Sonifi Solutions
  • REM Hospitality
  • Encore
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  • Cintas
  • The Chartres Lodging Group
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  • Auro Hotels
  • Robert A. Alter Family
  • Shaner Hotel Group
  • Philips Lighting
  • Rigel Linen/Rubbermaid
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  • P Kaufmann Fabrics
  • Caesars Entertainment
  • Highgate
  • Steve & Bonnie Holmes
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  • Robert A. Alter Family
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  • S&D Coffee
  • Kinsell Family
  • Pebblebrook Hotel Trust
  • BRE Select Hotels
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  • LG Electronics USA, Inc
  • Red Lion Hotels Corporation
  • PSAV Presentation Services
  • DiamondRock Hospitality
  • HEI Hotels & Resorts
  • Radisson Hotel Group
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  • Summit Hotel Properties
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  • ALIS Logo
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  • Westmont Hospitality/Red Roof Inns*
  • Vesta Hospitality
  • Hospitality Ventures Management Group
  • Foodbuy
  • Tempur+Sealy
  • Sage Hospitality
  • The Broadmoor
  • Avendra
  • Geoffrey & Leslie Balloti
  • HomeBox Office (HBO)
  • Accor Hotels
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  • Anhueser-Busch
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  • HDSupply
  • Two Roads Hospitality
  • WGL Energy
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  • Ryman Hospitality Properties Foundation
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  • Sunstone Hotel Investors
  • G6 Hospitality
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  • John Belden
  • Standard Textile Co. Inc.
  • EcoLab
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  • InterContinental Hotels
  • Royal Cup Coffee & Tea
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  • The Lodging Conference
  • Pepsico
  • Pyramid Hotel Group and Winegardner & Hammons
  • Interstate Hotels & Resorts
  • Jones Lang LaSalle (JLL)