Tompkins Cortland Community College

Catalog 2017-18

Recreation: Outdoor Recreation

(HEGIS: 5506)

A.S. Degree

Outdoor Recreation is a fast-growing and popular field in the U.S. and around the world. For more than a century, the number of people who participate in outdoor recreation and who seek an outdoor experience has steadily increased, as has the number of agencies (private, public, governmental, and nonprofit) offering outdoor recreation programs. This trend is projected to continue in the future. The field of outdoor recreation has developed over this period of time, providing outdoor recreational professionals a body of knowledge, leadership, proper planning, certifications, and respect for the environment through a display of outdoor ethics.

The Outdoor Recreation degree program is designed to provide you with a strong foundation in the liberal arts and sciences. You will also develop a foundation of camp, outdoor education, and outdoor recreation leadership skills and knowledge required to be an effective and competent outdoor leader and outdoor educator. Once you complete this program, you will be prepared for transfer to an outdoor-related baccalaureate degree program, and to work effectively and safely in the field.

Program Requirements

(for those matriculating in 2017-2018)


A.S., requirements, career options

Field Experience

Field experience is an exciting and important component of the outdoor recreation program. Beginning with your first year, you will be participating in a team challenge course, and will be encouraged to take several outdoor activity skill classes. As you progress through the program, additional leadership, programming, and outdoor field experiences will be a vital aspect of your study. You also will be given opportunities to plan and lead outdoor experiences for agencies in your community.

Career Opportunities

While the curriculum of this program is designed primarily for transfer to a bachelor’s degree program, it provides skills directly applicable to entry-level positions in the outdoor recreation field.

Transfer Options

Outdoor recreation leaders who have earned a bachelor’s or master’s degree are more likely to be offered higher-level management positions. Possible transfer options in outdoor-related bachelor degree programs are offered by:

  • SUNY College at Cortland
  • Green Mountain College
  • Ithaca College
  • Lock Haven University
  • Penn State University

For specific transfer information, contact the Counseling, Career, and Transfer Services office.

Program Chair

Patrick Mercer
Associate Professor (Recreation)

Contact Admissions about this program

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