Recreation Management Major — B.S.

Leisure professionals are people who value leisure as a meaningful pursuit throughout the life span and who work with others to promote personal growth, fitness, wellness, creativity, healthy leisure choices, and overall quality of life through recreation. Recreation management majors gain knowledge and skills in leadership, recreation program planning, group dynamics, facilitation techniques, cultural competence, research methods, supervision, and administration through a variety of in-class and experiential learning activities. Students may specialize in recreation service delivery areas, such as public parks and recreation, youth services, leadership development, commercial recreation, tourism, or hospitality. Students may also choose to combine the major with a minor in, for example, psychology, business, health, or nutrition promotion.

Careers in recreation management are growing, and opportunities exist in a variety of settings. Leisure professionals are employed in governmental agencies such as community parks and recreation departments, state and national parks, military recreation, and nonprofit agencies such as the YMCA, Boy and Girl Scouts, and Boys and Girls Clubs. Graduates may also pursue careers in recreation business enterprise in travel and tourism, hospitality, resorts, theme parks, fitness centers, convention centers, events planning, cruise ships, and visitor bureaus. Recreation management graduates are also prepared for careers in the private sector with leisure service agencies such as country clubs, campus recreation, and employee recreation. The graduate of the recreation management program is eligible to apply for certification as a certified park and recreation professional through the National Recreation and Park Association.

Please note that students are no longer being accepted into the Recreation Management major after the Fall 2014 semester.

Special Academic Status Policy for Recreation Management Majors

  1. A student in this major must receive a semester grade of at least C- in all required RLS-prefix courses.
  2. A student who fails to complete a required RLS-prefix course with a grade of at least C- must repeat the course. The Ithaca College policies on repeating courses must be followed. See "Repeating a Course" under Credit and Grade Information.
  3. A student who receives less than a C- after repeating a required RLS course will be subject to dismissal from the program. A student dismissed from the program may be eligible to enter other Ithaca College degree programs.
  4. A student dismissed from a professional practicum is subject to receiving a failing grade and, in that case, must complete a prescribed program of remediation prior to a second placement. The student must register again for the practicum. A student dismissed from a professional practicum a second time is subject to dismissal from the program.
  5. In exceptional cases, a student may be readmitted to the program upon satisfying conditions determined by the faculty.

At least 60 credits of liberal arts are required to graduate with a B.S. degree. All candidates for the B.S. degree in recreation management must complete a minimum of 120 credits in the components described below.


Foundations of recreation and leisure18
Recreation management core24
Recreation management practicum12-15
Integrative Core Curriculum 119-20
Liberal Arts electives13-15
Free electives28-33
Total Credits120

Please refer to "ICC" tab on our school's main page to see requirements.

Degree Requirements 

RLS 10100Leisure and Society 13
RLS 10500Fundamentals of Leadership 13
RLS 12500Understanding Disability: Characteristics, Causes, Services 13
RLS 33200Research Methods3
RLS 34000Inclusive Recreation and Diversity 13
RLS 45300Seminar: Professional Development3
GBUS 20300Legal Environment of Business I3
RLS 15100Foundations of Outdoor Adventure Pursuits3
RLS 23200Program Planning3
RLS 33000Administration of Recreation3
RLS 33100Supervision of Recreation Personnel3
RLS 33400Leisure Education: A Therapeutic Recreation Intervention3
RLS 33600Commercial Recreation3
Select 12-15 credits of the following: 2
Service Learning in Recreation
Service Learning II: Administration
Internship in Recreation and Leisure Studies
Total Credits39

Satisfies Complementary Liberal Arts requirement.


A minimum of 6 credits must be earned in RLS 24800 and RLS 34800. The total number of practicum credits earned for the degree may not exceed 15, including those credits earned in service learning courses outside the major. Practicum credits beyond the 12 required may be counted as free electives.

Internships must be approved by the department chair. To be eligible for an internship (RLS 44100), a recreation management major must meet the following prerequisites:

  • GPA of at least 2.50 in Department of Recreation and Leisure Studies courses
  • Minimum GPA of 3.00 in RLS 24800 and RLS 34800
  • Cumulative GPA of at least 2.00 and at least 24 credits earned in the last 12 months
  • Completion of at least 24 credits of required recreation courses (RLS xxxxx) and at least 6 credits of recreation electives (RLS xxxxx)