Want a career focused on helping people enjoy their “free time?” Recreation Leadership will
prepare you to design and manage recreation programs that are beneficial to the mental
and physical well-being of participants and recreation professionals alike! Imagine
working with a group of kids on a ropes course and helping them to be more confident
or running a guide service that provides access to remote area such as sea kayaking
in Alaska! The world is your office and your product is unique experiences!
The Recreation Leadership program is founded on the principle that healthy recreation
and leisure pursuits are critical to the development of the complete individual with
a holistic approach to living. The recreation professional, regardless of the specific
sector, is crucial in delivering high quality recreation and leisure experiences that
impact individuals in meaningful ways. Through experiential and traditional learning
environments coupled with direct application of theory and best practices, the Recreation
Leadership student will develop core competencies and build on the leadership, critical
thinking and problem solving skills necessary for success in a broad range of career
Two minors are offered through the Recreation Leadership program to provide specialized
knowledge and skills to further prepare students for future careers in the recreation
and tourism industry.
Use of the outdoor environment and Ferrum Outdoors is an integral part of the Outdoor Recreation minor. By providing opportunities for
the student body to participate in adventure pursuits, Ferrum Outdoors affords the
Outdoor Recreation minor the opportunity to develop, implement and evaluate programs
while gaining valuable technical and leadership skills.
One of the fastest growing and most significant trends of today’s tourism industry,
Ecotourism is defined as sustainable tourism responsible to natural and scenic areas
that encourages environmental and cultural conservation while promoting local economic
development. A minor in Ecotourism will equip Ferrum students to be industry leaders
in a rapidly expanding field.
Coursework in Recreation Leadership
The curriculum incorporates a variety of topics to prepare students for opportunities
in the fields of Recreation Leadership, Outdoor Recreation, and Ecotoursim and includes
courses such as:
- REC 165 World Ecotourism Destinations and Cultures
- REC 260 Foundations of Recreation and Leisure
- REC 331 Community Leisure Services
- REC 334 Commercial Recreation
- REC 341 Program Planning and Leadership
- REC 350 Risk Management, Safety, and Legal Issues in Recreation Administration
- REC 360 Recreation Leadership Theory and Philosophy
- REC 410 Recreation Administration
- REC 413 Recreation Facility Planning, Development and Maintenance
- REC 440 Recreation Seminar
- REC 499 Internship
Experiential & Hands-on Learning Opportunities
The very nature of Recreation Leadership lends itself to learning through experience.
As such, the curriculum utilizes an experiential education model in which students
and faculty engage in meaningful and dynamic exploration of topics critical to success
in the field of recreation. While students learn the principles and skills of the
field, many discover and develop life-long recreational pursuits that ultimately become
an integral part of their career. It is from this passion that leadership springs.
From leading activities with youth to developing and implementing a special event to
crafting a business plan for a recreation or ecotourism business, leadership is a
primary focus of the curriculum. Multiple avenues exist for students to develop and
hone their leadership skill, including:
Students have a unique opportunity to develop and hone their outdoor leadership skills
by organizing and leading adventure programs for the campus community. With direction
and oversight from the coordinator, student leaders organize and lead winter sports,
rock climbing, caving, canoeing, backpacking, and kayaking trips. Seeking improvement,
student leaders are constantly evaluated by the coordinator, program participants,
co-leaders, and themselves.
Students in a variety of recreation classes are constantly involved with events and
programs on campus and in the community. Examples include Folk Life Festival, disc golf tournaments, Panther Productions, and other campus organizations. Also,
the Recreation Club provides a variety of leadership development opportunities.
All students are required to participate in at least one E-term. During these intensive
three-week courses, students and faculty explore a topic through direct and dynamic
interaction with the content. E-term course destinations include South Africa, Alaska,
Costa Rica and Peru with new destinations developed continuously.
The internship is an important component of the student's journey toward professionalism
and frequently serves as one of the student's most rewarding college experiences.
Typically completed the summer between the junior and senior year, internships enhance
student learning by putting theories and concepts into practice with hands-on experience
under the direction of a professional.
What can I be with a Major in Recreation Leadership?
A major in Recreation Leadership leads to traditional career paths, as well as less
expected fields. For example:
- You could be a(n) ...
- Camp Director
- College Outdoor Program Director
- Community Rec Director
- Ecotourism Provider
- Natural Historic Resource Interpreter
- Nature Center Director
- Outdoor Adventure Guide
- Outdoor Recreation Specialists
- Park Manager
- Park Planner
- Recreation Programmer
- Ropes Course Manager
- Travel Consultant
- Travel Planner
- YMCA Director
Recreation Leadership Faculty
Professors of Ferrum College are active participants in the intellectual growth and
development of the students.
Daniel Caston, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor of Recreation Leadership
Coordinator of Ferrum Outdoors Program
Christopher C. Mayer, Ph.D..
Assistant Professor of Recreation Leadership
Academic Secretary to Recreation Leadership
School of Social Sciences and Professional Studies
(540) 365-4514 - Office
(540) 365-4408 - Fax
Find Out More
Contact Dr. Christopher Mayer at firstname.lastname@example.org or Dr. Dan Caston at email@example.com
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