Leisure Activities Certification and Certificate Program Information

Leisure activities is a broad field that includes a wide range of certificate programs with the most popular being outdoor recreation and leisure travel. The programs focus on topics such as wilderness survival skills, rock climbing and environmental conservation.

Essential Information

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. Students learn leadership skills, management and administrative skills in both programs.

  • Program Fields: Outdoor recreation, leisure travel
  • Prerequisites: No education prerequisites, however certificate programs can complement a bachelor's degree

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 2012-2022, individuals working in recreation are projected to see a 14% increase in employment opportunities, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. The mean annual wages for these workers were $25,830 in May 2014.

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).

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