Prepare for an exciting field in the adventure recreation industry. Our new, four-year program prepares you for managing programs and enterprises that offer outdoor adventure activities, with a special focus on whitewater paddling, rock climbing, mountain biking, challenge courses and other pursuits.
You'll learn alongside professionals with decades of adventure recreation experience as you build technical skills, explore the ins and outs of the adventure industry and discover the management skills and techniques required in the field.
Our curriculum is hands-on and our classroom is often outdoors. As part of the degree, you'll earn a certification as a guide or instructor in one of our fields of focus. You'll also complete a practicum where you'll work in the industry alongside the experts. And when it's all said and done, you'll have everything you need to start your career in adventure recreation management.
Steve has more than 30 years of experience working in the adventure recreation industry. His roots run deep in the whitewater paddling industry of West Virginia and the mid-Atlantic region. He has taught whitewater raft guiding, canoeing, kayaking, river rescue, backpacking, rock climbing, orienteering and cross-country skiing on lakes, rivers, trails and seashores throughout the region and beyond.
His industry experience includes guiding, managing and teaching for commercial outfitters, outdoor retail, adventure camps, non-credit college outdoor programs, public park and recreation adventure programs and adventure academic programs. A focus of Steve’s career has been on improving the risk management of adventure programs and overall program administration. His proudest accomplishment? Introducing hundreds of students and clients to the joys of outdoor adventures and helping to foster rewarding, lifelong careers in the adventure field.
Dave has worked in the outdoor adventure recreation field for more than 20 years. Originally from the mountains of New Hampshire and Maine, he is proud to call West Virginia home. Dave has an undergraduate degree in Outdoor Recreation and a master’s degree from WVU. He is an AMGA-certified SPI rock climbing instructor and has completed the AMGA Rock Guide Course. He is also an ACA L4 swift water rescue and whitewater kayak instructor and has been commercially guiding rafts on Class V sections of rivers for twenty years. Dave is also a current wilderness first responder.
He has worked in the college outdoor recreation field for a dozen years sharing amazing experiences with students. Before that, Dave ran a commercial adventure recreation business, worked with adjudicated youth programs and was a National Park Service whitewater rescue ranger. Dave has traveled extensively for recreation and adventure but says that some of the most fun that can be had outdoors is watching students pick up a new life long skill in adventure recreation.
Build your knowledge and competency in the management of an adventure recreation enterprise. You'll learn about program design, risk management, budgeting, staffing and support operations.
This advanced skill course focused on methods and skills needed to lead whitewater paddling day trips primarily in rafts. You'll engage in hands-on activities that focus on site selection, equipment, logistics, permits, risk management, on-river trip management and group safety.
Learn how to save lives. This course provides the training necessary to become certified in dealing with various aspects and levels of outdoor or wilderness crises in forestry, recreation or any outdoor professionals.