Recreation Leadership

Recreation Leadership Major

Break out of the cubicle as you promote health and happiness through recreation. This hands-on major develops your leadership skills and confidence so you can create programs and events that help others experience life’s best moments. 

Recreation Leadership—the Serious Business of Play 

Coursework in Recreation Leadership Major

World Ecotourism Destinations and Cultures

Foundations of Recreation and Leisure

Recreation Leadership Theory and Philosophy

Recreation Delivery Systems

Program Planning and Leadership

Risk Management, Safety, and Legal Issues in Recreation Administration

Recreation Administration

Recreation Facility Planning, Development, and Maintenance

Recreation Seminar

Special Events Planning and Management

Recreation Internship

Click here to view current catalog.

Outdoor Recreation Minor

Make your office under wide-open skies as you build your recreation career in the world’s mountains, forests, rivers and oceans. This 21-credit minor is your trailhead onto the path of safe and fun outdoor adventure leadership.

Outdoor Recreation—The Adventure of a Lifetime is Also a Career

Coursework in Outdoor Recreation Minor

Foundations of Recreation and Leisure

Wilderness Leadership

Facilitation of Adventure Pursuits

Risk Management, Safety, and Legal Issues in Recreation

Recreation Administration

Recreation Leadership Theory and Philosophy

Outdoor Education

Backpacking and Hiking

Rock Climbing

Outdoor Water Sports


Click here to view current catalog.

Ecotourism Minor

Imagine yourself touring the world’s wildest destinations for a living. This 21-credit minor stamps your passport as a leader of journeys that respect the earth and its diverse and beautiful cultures. 

Ecotourism - Make a Difference Through Travel

Coursework in Ecotourism Minor

World Ecotourism Destinations and Cultures

Foundations of Ecotourism

Interpreting Culture and Nature

Issues in Sustainable and Ecotourism

Conservation Biology

Recreation Administration

Click here to view current catalog.

Experiential & Hands-on Learning Opportunities

The essence of Recreation Leadership lends itself to learning through experience. While you learn the principles and skills of the field, you will discover and develop life-long recreational pursuits that ultimately become an integral part of your career. It is from this passion that leadership springs. From leading activities with youth to developing and implementing special events to crafting a business plan for a recreation or ecotourism business, leadership is a major focus of the curriculum.

You will develop and hone your leadership through the following experiences:

Ferrum Outdoors

You have a unique opportunity to develop and hone your outdoor leadership skills by organizing and leading adventure programs for the campus community. As a student leader, you will organize and lead winter sports, rock climbing, caving, canoeing, backpacking, and kayaking trips.

Campus Activities

Through your coursework, you are constantly involved with events and programs on campus and in the community. Examples include the Blue Ridge Folk Life Festival, disc golf tournaments, and Panther Productions events. Also, the Recreation Club provides a variety of leadership development opportunities.

Experiential Term

All students are required to participate in at least one E-term. During these intensive three-week courses, faculty guide you in the exploration of a topic through direct and dynamic interaction with the content. Recreation Leadership and Ecotourism E-term course destinations include Alaska, Costa Rica, and Peru as well as the James River in Virginia with new destinations developed continuously (ECT 371 and REC 372)


The internship is an important component of your journey toward professionalism and is frequently considered one of the 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?

  • 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 Ranger
  • Game Warden
  • Park Planner
  • Recreation Programmer
  • Ropes Course Manager
  • Travel Consultant
  • 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
Program Coordinator for Recreation Leadership
(540) 365-4494 
Administrative Support

Kathy Fletcher
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 cmayer@ferrum.edu or Dr. Dan Caston at dcaston@ferrum.edu

Experiential Term »
Honors Program »
International Programs »
Service Learning »