Recreation and Park Management

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The B.S. in RPM can prepare you for

A professional career in a wide selection of recreation management agencies. If you are someone who likes to work with people, enjoys hands-on, applied projects, and enjoys the idea of facilitating active, healthy-life styles then this may be the degree for you.

Career Opportunities for each of the four concentrations:
  1. Community & Non-Profit Recreation–local park and recreation departments, community centers, youth, arts and drama programs, non-profit agencies and youth-serving agencies like the YMCA, Boys and Girls Clubs, after-school programs, Military Welfare and Recreation
  2. Commercial and Tourism –private sector businesses such as cruise lines, convention and visitors bureaus, health clubs, campgrounds, resorts, spas, timeshares and condominiums, country clubs, corporate recreation facilities, convention center, tourism, event and festival planning, entertainment venues and arenas, marinas, airlines, and passenger transport, theme and water parks, eco-tourism
  3. Outdoor Recreation– outdoor recreation leadership, adventure guide, organized camps, park managers, park planners, interpretive positions at local, state and national-level agencies, museums, aquariums, zoos, cultural and heritage attractions
  4. Recreational Sport Leadership – community recreational sport programs, fitness, aquatics, non-profit agency youth sport programs, college and university recreational sports programs, work-place recreation, golf courses, amateur and professional sports agencies

Job Prospects

Many students begin their first job either with the agency where they intern or with an agency they network with during their internship. National data indicates:

" Employment in commercial recreation and tourism management is expected to grow much faster than average for all occupations
" Wages and salaries in amusement and recreation services are projected to increase by 32% by 2008 with rapidly rising demand in fitness, health & recreational opportunities for older adults
" Jobs in government agencies will grow about as fast as average and positions are available in a wide variety of agencies
Some sample job titles and salaries include:

Assistant Managers $25-35,000
General Managers $55,000
Recreation Supervisor $29,000
Recreational Sports Director $38,000
Recreation Director $43,000
Entry-level Ranger $23,000
With more experience and education $40,000

RPM Degree Program Highlights

" Prime location close to mass tourism destinations, including municipal, state and federal recreation agencies. Graduates obtain employment in recreation-related businesses such as entertainment complexes, resorts, cruise ships, country clubs and golf courses, sports marketing, city recreation departments, student activities, intramurals, employee recreation, youth ministries, parks, and outdoor adventure guiding.
" Seven full-time faculty teach undergraduate and graduate courses in the degree. All faculty actively strive for excellence in teaching, research and service.
" Nine RCLS courses specific to the Recreation and Park Management degree.
" Students can concentrate in Commercial Recreation & Tourism, Community & Non-Profit Recreation, Outdoor Recreation, and Recreational Sport Leadership.
" Courses, work experience and internship can be tailored to meet specific career interests. There are many complementary minors and special programs to choose from, including but not limited to, Business Administration, Public Administration, Planning, Coastal and Marine Resources, and an accelerated MBA.

Program of Study & Declaring the Major

In addition to ECU general education requirements a core of RCLS courses, majors complete coursework specific to their area of concentration. Students also receive credit for practicum work and a twelve-week (480 hour) internship with recreation and leisure services agencies.

Any student wishing to major in RPM must, at the time of entrance to the curriculum, possess a minimum of 2.0 GPA; have no more than 10 s.h. of general education remaining; complete a short written application (available at www.ecu.edu/rcls); and have a meeting with an RCLS faculty member.

Learning More About the Recreation and Park Management
For more information, contact the National Recreation and Park Association (http://www.nrpa.org/), or the North Carolina Recreation and Park Society (http://www.ncrpa.net/)

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