Northern Michigan University’s College of Graduate Studies & Research has launched a new master’s degree called Administration of Outdoor Recreation and Nature-Based Tourism, which will take effect this fall.
The program is largely delivered online through NMU’s Global Campus, with two in-person summer seminar courses. It is intended for individuals currently working in parks and recreation who wish to advance into administrative positions, as well as prospective students interested in entering these careers.
“The outdoor recreation industry is one of the biggest aspects of the US economy,” said Professor and Program Director Scott Jordan of NMU’s School of Health and Human Performance. “The AORNBT degree was designed to produce leaders in this field.”
Prospective students in the following fields can use this degree to advance their careers: National Park Service; National Forest Service; recreation and land management agencies at the federal, state, or local level; non-profit organizations; and managers of outdoor recreation and tourism in the private sector.
“Outdoor recreation and nature-based tourism are among the fastest growing and most popular types of recreation, and the demand for qualified professionals to manage relevant programs and facilities is growing proportionately,” added Assistant Professor Ryan Hines.
Compulsory courses deal with the history and philosophy of leisure; Sustainability, current issues and legal and ethical aspects of outdoor leisure; and management and administration. In addition to the summer seminar, there are also electives and research components.
Professor Jacquie Medina added that the program “not only provides the administrative and managerial preparation for career advancement, but also provides a foundation for continuing with doctoral studies”.
Examples of careers for which people have earned similar degrees include state government agencies, community parks and recreation, the leadership services industry, and community planners for areas wishing to develop a tourism economy, or the knowledge to sustainably lead an outdoor recreation economy.
For more information on the 34-credit program, see https://nmu.edu/hhp/administration-outdoor-recreation-and-nature-based-tourism