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Career and Education Opportunities for Recreation Coordinators in Columbia, Maryland

For those living in the Columbia, Maryland area, there are many career and education opportunities for recreation coordinators. Currently, 6,090 people work as recreation coordinators in Maryland. This is expected to grow by 12% to about 6,810 people by 2016. This is not quite as good as the nation as a whole, where employment opportunities for recreation coordinators are expected to grow by about 14.7%. In general, recreation coordinators conduct recreation activities with groups in public, private, or volunteer agencies or recreation facilities.

A person working as a recreation coordinator can expect to earn about $11 per hour or $23,050 yearly on average in Maryland and about $10 hourly or $21,960 yearly on average in the U.S. as a whole. Recreation coordinators earn less than people working in the category of Fitness and Recreation generally in Maryland and less than people in the Fitness and Recreation category nationally.

There are 109 schools of higher education in the Columbia area, including eleven within twenty-five miles of Columbia where you can get a degree to start your career as a recreation coordinator. The most common level of education for recreation coordinators is a Bachelor's degree. You can expect to spend about four years studying to be a recreation coordinator if you already have a high school diploma.

CAREER DESCRIPTION: Recreation Coordinator

Recreation Coordinator video from the State of New Jersey Dept. of Labor and Workforce Development

In general, recreation coordinators conduct recreation activities with groups in public, private, or volunteer agencies or recreation facilities. They also organize and promote activities, such as arts and crafts, sports, and hobbies, taking into account the needs and interests of individual members.

Recreation coordinators enforce rules and regulations of recreational facilities to take care of discipline and insure safety. They also promote interest in recreational activities such as arts and hobbies. Equally important, recreation coordinators have to meet with staff to consider rules and work-related problems. They are often called upon to greet new arrivals, introducing them to other participants  and encouraging participation. They are expected to explain principles and safety procedures to participants in recreational activities, and demonstrate use of materials and equipment. Finally, recreation coordinators administer first aid in line with prescribed procedures, and notify emergency medical personnel when needed.

Every day, recreation coordinators are expected to be able to articulate ideas and problems. They need to listen to and understand others in meetings.

It is important for recreation coordinators to complete and take care of time and attendance forms and inventory lists. They are often called upon to ascertain and interpret group interests, evaluate equipment and facilities, and adapt efforts to meet participant needs. They also oversee the daily operations of recreational facilities. They are sometimes expected to direct special activities or events such as aquatics or performing arts. Somewhat less frequently, recreation coordinators are also expected to encourage participants to evolve their own efforts and leadership skills through group discussions.

And finally, they sometimes have to conduct individual in-room visits with residents.

Like many other jobs, recreation coordinators must be reliable and have exceptional integrity.

Similar jobs with educational opportunities in Columbia include:

  • Fitness Instructor. Instruct or coach groups or individuals in exercise activities and the fundamentals of sports. Demonstrate techniques and methods of participation. Observe participants and inform them of corrective measures necessary to improve their skills. Those required to hold teaching degrees should be reported in the appropriate teaching category.
  • Residential Life Director. Coordinate activities for residents of boarding schools, college fraternities or sororities, college dormitories, or similar establishments. Order supplies and determine need for maintenance, repairs, and furnishings. May maintain household records and assign rooms. May refer residents to counseling resources if needed.

EDUCATIONAL OPPORTUNITIES: Recreation Coordinator Training

Howard University - Washington, DC

Howard University, 2400 Sixth St NW, Washington, DC 20059-0001. Howard University is a large university located in Washington, District of Columbia. It is a private not-for-profit school with primarily 4-year or above programs. It has 10,696 students and an admission rate of 49%. Howard University has 2 areas of study related to Recreation Coordinator. They are:

  • Parks, Recreation and Leisure Studies, bachelor's degree and master's degree which graduated three and four students respectively in 2008.
  • Health and Physical Education/Fitness, Other Specialties, bachelor's degree which graduated 37 students in 2008.

Montgomery College - Rockville, MD

Montgomery College, 40 W. Gude Drive, Suite 220, Rockville, MD 20850. Montgomery College is a large college located in Rockville, Maryland. It is a public school with primarily 2-year programs and has 24,452 students. Montgomery College has 2 areas of study related to Recreation Coordinator. They are:

  • Parks, Recreation and Leisure Facilities Management, one to two year which graduated 5 students in 2008.
  • Health and Physical Education/Fitness, Other Specialties, one to two year which graduated 3 students in 2008.

University of the District of Columbia - Washington, DC

University of the District of Columbia, 4200 Connecticut Ave NW, Washington, DC 20008. University of the District of Columbia is a medium sized university located in Washington, District of Columbia. It is a public school with primarily 4-year or above programs and has 5,339 students. University of the District of Columbia has a bachelor's degree program in Health and Physical Education/Fitness, Other Specialties.

Coppin State University - Baltimore, MD

Coppin State University, 2500 West North Avenue, Baltimore, MD 21216-3698. Coppin State University is a small university located in Baltimore, Maryland. It is a public school with primarily 4-year or above programs. It has 4,051 students and an admission rate of 36%. Coppin State University has a bachelor's degree program in Sport and Fitness Administration/Management which graduated five students in 2008.

Towson University - Towson, MD

Towson University, 8000 York Rd, Towson, MD 21252-0001. Towson University is a large university located in Towson, Maryland. It is a public school with primarily 4-year or above programs. It has 21,111 students and an admission rate of 61%. Towson University has 2 areas of study related to Recreation Coordinator. They are:

  • Sport and Fitness Administration/Management, bachelor's degree which graduated 93 students in 2008.
  • Health and Physical Education/Fitness, Other Specialties, bachelor's degree which graduated 11 students in 2008.

Marymount University - Arlington, VA

Marymount University, 2807 N Glebe Rd, Arlington, VA 22207-4299. Marymount University is a small university located in Arlington, Virginia. It is a private not-for-profit school with primarily 4-year or above programs. It has 3,541 students and an admission rate of 84%. Marymount University has a bachelor's degree program in Sport and Fitness Administration/Management which graduated one student in 2008.

The Community College of Baltimore County - Baltimore, MD

The Community College of Baltimore County, 7201 Rossville Blvd., Baltimore, MD 21237. The Community College of Baltimore County is a large college located in Baltimore, Maryland. It is a public school with primarily 2-year programs and has 20,673 students. The Community College of Baltimore County has 2 areas of study related to Recreation Coordinator. They are:

  • Parks, Recreation and Leisure Studies, one to two year and associate's degree which graduated zero and one students respectively in 2008.
  • Parks, Recreation, Leisure and Fitness Studies, Other Specialties, one to two year and associate's degree which graduated six and two students respectively in 2008.

Northern Virginia Community College - Annandale, VA

Northern Virginia Community College, 4001 Wakefield Chapel Rd, Annandale, VA 22003-3796. Northern Virginia Community College is a large college located in Annandale, Virginia. It is a public school with primarily 2-year programs and has 41,870 students. Northern Virginia Community College has an associate's degree program in Parks, Recreation and Leisure Facilities Management.

American University - Washington, DC

American University, 4400 Massachusetts Ave NW, Washington, DC 20016-8001. American University is a large university located in Washington, District of Columbia. It is a private not-for-profit school with primarily 4-year or above programs. It has 11,684 students and an admission rate of 53%. American University has a master's degree program in Sport and Fitness Administration/Management which graduated twelve students in 2008.

Gallaudet University - Washington, DC

Gallaudet University, 800 Florida Ave, NE, Washington, DC 20002-3695. Gallaudet University is a small university located in Washington, District of Columbia. It is a private not-for-profit school with primarily 4-year or above programs. It has 1,389 students and an admission rate of 64%. Gallaudet University has 2 areas of study related to Recreation Coordinator. They are:

  • Parks, Recreation and Leisure Studies, bachelor's degree which graduated 2 students in 2008.
  • Parks, Recreation and Leisure Facilities Management, master's degree which graduated 1 student in 2008.

Howard Community College - Columbia, MD

Howard Community College, 10901 Little Patuxent Pkwy, Columbia, MD 21044-3197. Howard Community College is a medium sized college located in Columbia, Maryland. It is a public school with primarily 2-year programs and has 7,905 students. Howard Community College has a one to two year program in Parks, Recreation, Leisure and Fitness Studies, Other Specialties.

CERTIFICATIONS

Certified Personal Trainer: The ACSM Certified Personal TrainerSM is a fitness professional involved in developing and implementing an individualized approach to exercise leadership in healthy populations and/or those individuals with medical clearance to exercise.

For more information, see the American College of Sports Medicine website.

Sports Nutrition: The optimum way for you or your clients to get the most out of their workouts and feel their best is to develop an energizing, performance-enhancing nutrition plan, tailored to their body's specific needs.

For more information, see the American Fitness Professionals and Associates website.

Sports Conditioning Specialist: The AFPA Sports Conditioning Specialist Certification program presents the principles and practices of a new era of athletic training.

For more information, see the American Fitness Professionals and Associates website.

Functional Training Specialist: The AFPA Functional Training Specialist Certification program is designed to teach the Functional Training protocols to improve total athleticism, enhances performance, and reduces injuries through exercise progressions that will spur development potential for specific movement patterns commonly use in sport.

For more information, see the American Fitness Professionals and Associates website.

Yoga Instructor Level I: The AFPA Yoga Fitness Instructor Certification program emphasizes safe, effective, and inspiring teaching methods that prepare you to be a confident and competent Yoga Fitness Instructor.

For more information, see the American Fitness Professionals and Associates website.

Stability Ball Trainer: The AFPA Stability Ball Trainer Certification program was developed to promote safe yet challenging ball exercise to instructors and personal trainers.

For more information, see the American Fitness Professionals and Associates website.

Functional Trainer: Functional training is a complete system of athletic development that focuses on training the body the way it will be used in competition, making it the most efficient and effective form of training today.

For more information, see the International Fitness Professional Association website.

Master Personal Fitness Trainer Track: The Master Personal Fitness Trainer Track includes the following certifications: IFPA Personal Fitness Trainer OR .

For more information, see the International Fitness Professional Association website.

Flexibility Coach: You want to be at the "top-of-your-game," and the IFPA Certified Flexibility Coach gives you tools to set you apart.

For more information, see the International Fitness Professional Association website.

Certified Special Events Professional: The CSEP designation is the hallmark of professional achievement in the special events industry.

For more information, see the International Special Events Society website.

Boxing Level I: This 1 day certification provides an overview of the theoretical knowledge and practical skill necessary to teach a safe and effective Boxing and or Kick Boxing class.

For more information, see the International Sports Conditioning Association website.

Kick Boxing Level I: This 1 day certification provides an overview of the theoretical knowledge and practical skill necessary to teach a safe and effective Boxing and or Kick Boxing class.

For more information, see the International Sports Conditioning Association website.

Certified Therapeutic Recreation Specialist: To be awarded the Certified Therapeutic Recreation Specialist (CTRS) certificate, the candidate must meet the eligibility requirements and pass a knowledge-based exam.

For more information, see the National Council for Therapeutic Recreation Certification, Inc. website.

LOCATION INFORMATION: Columbia, Maryland

Columbia, Maryland
Columbia, Maryland photo by Jeff Kubina

Columbia is located in Howard County, Maryland. It has a population of over 96,421. The cost of living index in Columbia, 100, is near the national average.

The three most popular industries for women in Columbia are educational services, health care, and professional, scientific, and technical services. For men, it is professional, scientific, and technical services, public administration, and educational services. The average travel time to work is about 30 minutes. More than 59.0% of Columbia residents have a bachelor's degree, which is higher than the state average. The percentage of residents with a graduate degree, 28.7%, is higher than the state average.

The percentage of Columbia residents that are affiliated with a religious congregation, 49.3%, is less than the national average but more than the state average. Abiding Savior Lutheran Church, Atholton Seventh Day Adventist Church and Long Reach Interfaith Center are all churches located in Columbia. The most prominent religious groups are the Catholic Church, the United Methodist Church and the Southern Baptist Convention.

Columbia is home to the Symphony Woods Office Center and the Rivers Corporate Park as well as Middle Patuxent Environmental Area and Clarksville Environmental Area. Shopping centers in the area include Governor Century Plaza Shopping Center, Atholton Shopping Center and Owen Brown Village Shopping Center. Visitors to Columbia can choose from PFMG, Courtyard by Marriott and Hilton Inn Columbia for temporary stays in the area.