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What is recreation and athletic management?

Recreation and athletic management is the coordination of leisure activities in public and private settings. Graduates are prepared for careers in management and operations within the growing multi-billion-dollar recreation industry.

Why recreation and athletic management at OSU?

Through experiential learning, students gain practical experience and professional skills. Our program has a strong national reputation and produces exceptional graduates who are taught by expert faculty. Ultimately, we bring wonder, joy, excitement and adventure to others. 

Career Paths

Our students have a variety of career options to choose from upon graduation.



  • Camp programming
  • City/State/Federal Park management
  • Interpretive services
  • Community event management


  • Athletic programming
  • Large sporting events
  • Collegiate sporting events
  • Recreation facility management


Coursework Preview

  • Laboratory in Recreation Management Gain hands-on experience with activities in all areas of recreation − sports, wellness and relaxation, aquatics, dance, outdoor recreation, arts and crafts and games
  • Recreation Program Planning Learn the skills needed to plan and implement a community recreation program.
  • Recreation in a Technologically Advanced Society Use technology to enhance participant recreation by creating your own recreation game phone application. 
  • Introduction to Recreation Management Learn about the nature, scope and significance of recreation and leisure.
  • Facility Design in Recreation Management Planning, design and development of areas and facilities in recreation service delivery systems.
  • Campus Recreation, Intramural and Sport Program operations, industry standards, and current issues surrounding these areas of the recreation industry. 


Internship Experiences

Students are empowered to apply their learning within their desired career path through two required internships completed during the junior and senior year. During their internships, students gain more than 500 hours of experience in the field where they develop and apply professional skills such as programming, administration, communication and conflict resolution. From adventure camps in the mountains to city recreation services or working with sports teams, faculty work with students to find internships geared toward their interests. 


Student Perspective

Student skiing

“Pursuing the field of recreation management has created opportunities for me to explore the world of leisure in an exciting new way, with a specific focus on camp administration. The possibilities are endless! Our degree will prepare you for working in a field you love, and will provide you with a chance to grow in your knowledge of how recreation and leisure can promote personal growth and well-being for all individuals. ”

- Erica Nemeth, Recreation and Athletic Management

College of Education and Human Sciences

Student support


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