The mission of the Recreation, Park and Tourism Management program is to prepare students to be leaders in a variety of leisure service settings, with the purpose of enhancing quality of life among individuals and communities, both locally and globally. Graduates of the program find work opportunities at resorts, recreation centers, youth programs, parks and recreation departments, state and national parks, and a wide variety of other fields.

Students and alumni discuss their experience in the RPTM program and the benefits of the field.

Graduates of this program understand the wide array of benefits produced by recreation, park and tourism and they work professionally to provide these benefits at local, national and global levels. Furthermore, they work to assure that all people have access to these benefits regardless of ability or socio-economic status. Professional opportunities are available in, but not limited to:

  • resorts and theme parks, visitor and convention bureaus,
  • local park and recreation departments, state parks, national parks and other protected natural areas,
  • campus recreation and wellness centers, urban recreation centers, youth development such as YMCA and YWCA,
  • therapeutic recreation, inclusive recreation, and
  • corporate wellness programs, camps and outdoor leadership schools.

View Park and Recreation Salary Survey Results from the National Recreation and Park Association

View RPTM Alumni Career List

View information on the Disability Studies and Community Inclusion Minor

  • Tourists spend over 600 billion dollars in the United States each year.
  • In Ohio, tourists spend over 38 billion dollars each year.
  • In Ohio, nearly half a million jobs are sustained by tourism.
  • Individuals with disabilities are the largest minority group in the U.S. and serving their recreation needs is an important role of recreation, parks, & tourism professionals
  • According to The Partnership for a Healthier America, the parks and recreation industry is instrumental in reducing childhood obesity.
  • Cuyahoga Valley National Park is less than 10 miles from Kent State University.
  • The National Park Service employs over 20,000 people.
  • Across the country, over 100,000 people are employed full time by city park and recreation departments.
  • The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention lists visiting park and recreation facilities to protect yourself and others from COVID-19.
  • More than 190 million people visited a park, trail, public open space, or other recreation facility at least twice a month during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Kent State University's Recreation, Park, and Tourism Management program is accredited by the Council on Accreditation of Parks, Recreation, Tourism and Related Professions (COAPRT). The Council on Accreditation of Parks, Recreation, Tourism and Related Professions (COAPRT) accredits baccalaureate programs in parks, recreation, tourism, sport management, event management, therapeutic recreation, and leisure studies offered at regionally accredited institutions within the United States and its territories, and at nationally accredited institutions in Canada, and Mexico. Read more about COAPRT accreditation.

Discover more about the Recreation, Park & Tourism Management industry!

  • Explore over 30 video interviews featuring a diverse cast of park and recreation professionals in the YouTube series Parks and Recreation Professional Interview Series.


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