Leisure activities is a broad field that includes a wide range of certificate programs with the most popular being outdoor recreation and leisure travel. These certificate programs prepare individuals for entry-level careers in parks and recreation, travel and tourism, general leisure services, and recreation management. Graduates might later become travel agents, cruise consultants, park rangers, or wilderness leaders. Individuals who hold bachelor's degrees may qualify for professional certifications, but there are no educational prerequisites and certificate programs are open to outdoor enthusiasts as well.
Certificate of Achievement in Outdoor Recreation
Students learn leadership and education skills as they prepare to work with individuals and groups of all ages in settings like parks and recreation, adventure education and challenge course management. This field of leisure activities requires the study of environmental conservation and resource management. Courses in outdoor recreation certificate programs prepares individuals for leadership positions in the field. Course topics include the following:
- Leading adventure education
- Introduction to leadership theory
- Fundamentals of environmental conservation
- Teaching wilderness survival skills and Wilderness first responder training
- Basic rock climbing
- Kayaking and canoeing and Backpacking and hiking
Certificate of Achievement in Leisure Travel
Leisure travel includes airlines, cruise lines, adventure expeditions, conventions, guided tours, and more. Certificate programs in leisure travel prepare students to become travel agents through training in sales, marketing, and administrative skills. Additionally, students become thoroughly informed on how the travel industry operates, from how airlines schedule flights to the layout of cruise ships. Leisure travel certificate programs are generally considered beginner-level programs with few educational prerequisites. Courses in leisure travel include the following:
- Introduction to the travel industry
- North American tourism
- European tours
- Sales and customer service in leisure travel
- The cruise industry
- Adventure, air and group travel sales
Popular Career Options
Graduates of certificate programs in outdoor recreation are prepared for careers with the National Park Service, the U.S. Forest Service, the Boy Scouts, the Girl Scouts, and many other organizations focusing on outdoor leisure activities.
- Wilderness adventure organizer or leader
- Environmental education consultant
- Park ranger
- Youth camp manager
- Outdoor recreation program director
Leisure travel certificate programs prepare students for careers both organizing and leading leisure activities throughout the world.
- Travel agent
- Tour manager and leader
- Convention and meeting planner
- Leisure vacation consultant
- Cruise consultant
Employment Outlook and Salary Info
From 2014-2024, individuals working in recreation are projected to see a 10% increase in employment opportunities, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. The mean annual wages for these workers were $26,610 in May 2015.
Continuing Education Information
To become certified in the field of leisure studies, the National Recreation and Park Association offers a National Certification Examination. Instituted in 1981, the exam assesses the core skills and knowledge necessary for entry-level positions in parks, recreation and leisure services. A bachelor's degree or higher in a related field is necessary for certification. It is possible to become certified in three categories, including Certified Leisure Professional (CLP), Provisional Professional and Certified Leisure Associate (CLA).
A certificate in the field of leisure activities teaches students about different forms of leisure and recreation with many potential skills to learn and careers to apply for. Graduates can become professionally certified to improve their employability.