Mountain Recreation Management, B.S. |
- Adventure Leadership
- Mountain Resort Management
- Recreation Resource Management
Mountain Recreation Management at Lyndon
Live, work, and learn in the outdoors.
Lyndon’s Mountain Recreation Management Department’s mission is to create and maintain a caring environment in which to prepare leaders who are intellectually capable and competent in the management of recreation resources and in the delivery of leisure services. Students in these programs benefit from a professional core supported by a broad-based liberal arts foundation, which helps to improve critical thinking and communication skills.
The Adventure Leadership concentration provides immersion in field experiences (climbing, paddling, backpacking, mountaineering, ice climbing, backcountry skiing/riding, challenge course facilitation) while taking academic courses in program planning, research and evaluation, risk management, and management that culminates in the expedition.
The Ski Resort and Snowsport Management concentration has trained generations of students to be leaders in the winter-sport industry. Lyndon’s was the first four-year program of its kind in the nation and remains a key player to this day.
Experiential learning is supported by internships and expeditions, allowing students the opportunity to apply classroom learning to real-world situations. Our expeditions have gone to Kilimanjaro in Africa, the volcano Pico de Orizaba in Mexico, mountaineering in Ecuador and to the Sierra Nevada, multi-sport (mountain biking, canyoneering, climbing) in Utah, and backcountry skiing in Utah and Newfoundland.
The Recreation program was created in 1972 by a group of public and private sector executives to prepare professionals for careers in park management and resort planning and development. Core values of preparing students with great attitudes and strong work ethics to steward socially and environmentally-responsible endeavors, remain true today.
The program goals of the Mountain Recreation Management Department bond the three concentrations of Adventure Leadership, Natural Resource GIS Mapping and Planning, and Ski Resort and Snowsport Management across a core curriculum. Students who graduate from the program will have:
- strong written and verbal communication skills
- an understanding of leisure needs and behaviors of diverse populations
- an environmental awareness and appreciation
- sound resource management skills
- an ability to think logically and critically
- knowledge through applied experiences and problem solving
- individual, group, and organizational leadership skills
- the ability to design, conduct, and analyze research
- a commitment to community service
- an appreciation for the importance of a sound work ethic
A Hands-On Education
Want to live, work, and learn in the outdoors? Want the kind of real-world experience that places your resume at the top of the stack? Our students graduate with an average of over 1,000 hours hands-on experience in diverse operations. You have the potential to work hard, gain experience, and show future employers that you have what it takes to succeed.
Internship and Practicum Sites
Here are just some of the sites that have hosted student interns in the Mountain Recreation Management program.
- Burke Mountain, Vermont
- Smugglers’ Notch, Vermont
- Jay Peak Resort, Vermont
- Stowe Resort, Vermont
- Cranmore, New Hampshire
- Ragged Mountain, New Hampshire
- Gunstock Mountain Resort, New Hampshire
- Mount Washington Resort, New Hampshire
- Alyeska Resort, Alaska
- Heavenly Mountain Resort, California
- Sugarbowl, California
- Bandelier National Monument, New Mexico
- Deer Valley Resort, Utah
- Canyons Resort, Utah
Our Alumni Network
With over 500 alums employed in the public and private sector in every aspect of the recreation industry, Lyndon grads provide a powerful network for those who wish to follow in some interesting footsteps.
Established over 35 years ago by Vermont State Parks Director Ed Koenneman and Sno-Engineering President Jim Branch, Lyndon State was in a perfect position to provide a training ground for summer park leaders and winter ski area employees. The program evolved to prepare recreation professionals for community, therapeutic, natural resource, and adventure-based recreation positions.
It’s said that one may change careers five or more times in a lifespan. We believe that the combination of liberal arts and core/concentration theory and practice provide transferable skill sets for many careers. We treasure our alums as good citizens and partners in advocating quality of life through positive leisure and recreation experiences.
Mountain Recreation Management
Thom Anderson, M.S., (Department Chair – Mountain Recreation Management Core Curriculum and Adventure Leadership) is an assistant professor of Recreation at Lyndon State College in Vermont. His courses include Adventure Programming I and II, Leadership and Small Group Dynamics, Leisure and Society, and Outdoor Education Practicum. He currently serves on the Advisory Board for the Center for Rural Students and is a Class Director for the Midwest Community Development Institute. Thom cofounded the High Atlas Foundation (an international community development organization) and is currently a member of the board of directors. He is also a member of the advisory council for CorpsAfrica, a national service program for Africans. Thom served in Morocco with the Peace Corps from 1991-1995; and from 1997-1999 he worked as the Center Director for the United Seamen’s Service in Casablanca, Morocco. From 1999-2005, he managed the Peace Corps Fellows Program, an internship program for Returned Peace Corps Volunteers located at the Illinois Institute for Rural Affairs.
Sean Doll, M.Ed., (Head of the Mountain Resort Management concentration), teaches Introduction to Mountain Resort Management, Mountain Resort Management I and II, Leisure and Society, Public Relations, Risk Management, Internship Seminar, oversees the internships for all interns in the Mountain Recreation Management department and co-teaches Snow Maintenance. Sean has professional experience with Eastern Mountain Sports, Recreation Equipment Incorporated, Yellowstone National Park, B-Bar Guest Ranch and Nordic Center, Lee County Parks and Recreation, NC, and Omni Mount Washington Resort and Bretton Woods Ski Area (OMWR/BW). With OMWR/BW he was heavily involved with Marketing and Public Relations, and oversaw Sales, Event Management, Adventure Activities, Guest Relations, the Bretton Woods Nordic Center, and General Mountain Resort Management. While serving as President of the Twin Mountain/Bretton Woods Chamber of Commerce, Sean also served on other various boards and committees throughout northern New Hampshire and Vermont. He currently serves on the Board of Directors for the Lyndon Outing Club Ski Area and he is working toward his Doctorate in Education.
John DeLeo, Ed.D., (Head of the Recreation Resource Management Concentration) is a professor of Recreation, and teaches Recreation Resource Impacts, Statistics, Problem Solving Techniques, and Introduction to Geographic Information Systems. John has been teaching at Lyndon since 1976 and is a coordinator and spokesperson for Geographic Information at Lyndon while collaborating with public and private agencies to bring recreation management related real world experiences into the Department, such as: Stream Geomorphic Assessment and Current Use mapping for the Vermont Agency of Natural Resources. As a member of the American Alpine Club since 1981, John remains active in the climbing and mountaineering fields participating with students and alums on expeditions to Alaska, Mexico, Argentina and the lower 48.
Iryna Sharaievska, Ph.D., (MRM Core) is an assistant professor, teaches Leisure and Society, Research and Evaluation Capstone, Recreation Management, Program Planning and Delivery, Leadership and Small Group Dynamics. Among previously taught courses are also Leisure Service Delivery, and Leisure Services and Diversity. Iryna is a member of National Recreation and Park Association (NRPA), Young Professional Network and Vermont Recreation and Park Association. She has experience of working in tourism (travel company) and recreation (park district). Among Iryna’s research interests are topics such as leisure behavior in families, leisure-related technologies and family, child development in the context of family, leisure in non-traditional families (inter-cultural, transnational, etc.), and diversity in leisure. She serves as an ad-hoc reviewer for several journals and has presented the results of her research on multiple conferences.
- Floyd, M.F., Sharaievska, I., & Stodolska, M. (in press, 2013). Discrimination in leisure contexts. In: M. Stodolska, K.J. Shinew, M. Floyd, G. Walker. Race, ethnicity, and leisure. Champaign, IL: Human Kinetics.
- Sharaievska, I., Stodolska, M., Shinew, K.J., & Kim, J. (2010). Discrimination in leisure settings in Latino urban communities. Leisure/Loisir, 34, 295-326.
- Sharaievska, I., Kim, J., & Stodolska, M. (accepted for publication). Leisure and marital satisfaction in intercultural marriages. Journal of Leisure Research.
- Sharaievska, I., Stodolska, M., Tainsky, S., & Ryan, A. (under review). Increasing physical activity among minority youth through organized sports programs. Journal of Leisure Research.
Brett Engstrom, M.S. (MRM Core) teaches Recreation Resource Management. He has a M.S. in Botany, Field Naturalist Program. He has completed over 75 projects in Vermont and other areas of New England and NY inventorying natural communities, and rare, threatened, and endangered plants; mapping vegetation and natural communities using GIS, including some very large areas such as the town of Woodstock, VT, and Nulhegan Unit, Conte U.S. Fish & Wildlife Refuge in Essex Co., VT. Clients include: the National Park Service, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, NatureServe, The Nature Conservancy, The Conservation Fund, Vermont Natural Heritage Information Project, VT Military Department, New Hampshire Natural Heritage Bureau, town conservation commissions, engineering and environmental consulting firms, and private individuals and groups.
Nathan Harvey (Adventure Leadership) is an Adjunct Faculty member, a Lyndon graduate, and currently is the Program Director and Retail Manager at Great Glen Trails Outdoor Center in Pinkham Notch New Hampshire. Nate teaches White Water Kayaking and Outdoor Education Practicum. His Certifications are Wilderness First Responder, AED, CPR, ACA Advanced White Water Kayaking, Maine Trip Leader, and Red Cross Small Craft Safety Instructor.
Lilias Ide (Adventure Leadership) teaches Mountain Biking and is the Operations Manager and Program Director for The Kingdom Trails Association in East Burke, VT. She is currently certified in CPR and WFA and is on the Sinister Bikes Factory Team as well as a member of the Board of Directors for the Kingdom Kids Association.
John Kascenska, Ph.D. (Adventure Leadership) currently teaches SOLO Wilderness First Responder, Ice Climbing, and American Institute for Avalanche Research and Education (AIARE) 1 & 2 Avalanche courses for the Mountain Recreation Management Department. Dr. Kascenska is the Associate Academic Dean, as well as a 1982 graduate of Lyndon State College. Before moving into his current administrative role, John founded and coordinated the Adventure Leadership program. He has been climbing for 33 years and has 30 years of outdoor adventure program experience teaching courses in rock climbing, ice climbing, mountaineering, avalanche education, SOLO wilderness medicine, outdoor leadership, risk management and research. John is an American Mountain Guides Association (AMGA) Certified Single Pitch Instructor, SOLO Certified Wilderness First Responder, SOLO wilderness medicine instructor, American Heart Association – Basic Life Support (BLS) Instructor, AIARE 1 Course Leader, AIARE 2 Course Instructor, professional member of the American Avalanche Association, and owner of Kingdom Adventures Mountain Guides, LLC. For the past 10 years, he has served on the Board of Directors of Lyndon Rescue, Inc. John’s passion for the mountains has brought him to lead climbing adventures on four continents, including four successful ascents of Kilimanjaro (the highest point in Africa). John shares his passion for the mountains with students through the courses that he teaches at Lyndon; his work as a professional mountain guide; and his volunteer work with the American Alpine Club where he has served two terms as a member of the Board of Directors. He also remains active in his profession, publishing articles, giving presentations, and most recently serving as a contributing author for the newly published book, “Technical Skills for Adventure Programming: A Curriculum Guide.”
Steve Nichipor (Adventure Leadership) teaches Adventure Programming 2, Rock Climbing, and AIARE Avalanche 1 & 2. He is the Climbing Programs Director and Training Coordinator at Bretton Woods Resort. He trains Canopy Tour and climbing guides, and guides guests on rock climbs on local cliffs. In the winter, he guides ice climbing, snowshoeing and backcountry skiing. Year-round he supervises operations on the indoor climbing wall. He has professionally taught rock and ice climbing, backcountry skiing, and avalanche safety on and around Mt. Washington for 18 years.
James Noyes (Mountain Resort Management) will be teaching Summer Operations. James has been working with Omni Mount Washington Resort and Bretton Woods Ski Area for more than a decade. The majority of his experience is in the business end of operations focusing mostly on the major revenue generators of the ski industry (the ticket office and equipment rentals) in the winter as well as the seasonal activities year-round; snowshoeing, snow tubing, ice skating, dog sled rides, mountain biking, guided hiking, disc golf, canopy tours, fly fishing, and more. James also has extensive experience in tennis court design and maintenance, golf operations and ticketing and accounting systems.
Luke O’Brien is an Adjunct Faculty member in the Mountain Recreation Management department. A native of the Northeast Kingdom and 1997 graduate of Bates College (B.A. Geology), Luke is a naturalist, educator and outdoorsman with nearly twenty years of experience in trails and recreation management in the Northeast. He is certified in Wilderness First Responder, Swiftwater Rescue and Chainsaw Safety, and has extensive experience leading canoe and backpacking trips in northern New England. At NorthWoods Stewardship Center he serves as the Director of Development and Trails Coordinator and facilitates the NorthWoods Conservation Corps where he specializes in trail design, construction and maintenance. He is the author of two books, the Northeast Kingdom Mountain Trail Guide (2010) and the Clyde River Paddling and Fishing Guide (2007 & 2008), and has served on the Board of Directors of the Green Mountain Club, Cohos Trail Association, and Vermont Trails and Greenways Council. He lives in Newark with his wife and daughter.
Scott Reeves (Mountain Resort Management) teaches Introduction to Mountain Resort Management in tandem with Tim McGuire. An alumnus of Lyndon State College (1990), Scott has extensive field experience in mountain resort management with various mountain resorts throughout the northeast. Beginning with a marketing internship at Jay Peak Resort, he served various operational functions at Burke Mountain and Sugarbush. After working his way up to Vice President of Mountain Operations for Sugarbush until 1999 he went on to serve as VP of Mountain Operations at Mount Snow until 2006 and then served a similar function at Haystack from 2006 to 2007. Since 2007 Scott has been the VP of Mountain Operations at Stowe Resort.
Kelly Rossiter, Ed.D. (Adventure Leadership) is an Adjunct Faculty member in the Mountain Recreation Management program, teaching water and land-based field courses including Canoeing, Rock Climbing, and Mountaineering. He has earned a doctoral degree from the University of Vermont (Ed.D., Educational Leadership & Policy Studies) and a masters degree from the University of New Hampshire (M.S., Kinesiology/Outdoor Education). Kel holds credentials as an American Mountain Guide Association (AMGA) Certified Rock Guide, an American Institute for Avalanche Research & Education (AIARE) instructor, an American Canoe Association (ACA) Coastal Sea Kayak Instructor, and a Leave No Trace Master Educator, among many others. He is the Owner/Lead Guide of Adventure Spirit Rock + Ice + Alpine Experiences (www.adventurespiritguides.com), based in Burlington, Vermont, and is a Senior Guide with Rainier Mountaineering Incorporated. Additionally, he serves on the board of the Climbing Resource Access Group of Vermont.
Jack Savasta (Mountain Resort Management) teaches Lift Functions and will be teaching Snow Maintenance in Tandem with Sean Doll. He is the Maintenance Manager at Burke Mountain Ski Resort. He is a certified welder, machine shop technician, electrical engineer, ASC certified, and industrial hydraulics and industrial electrical certified.
CJ Scott (Mountain Resort Management) teaches the Mountain Bike Management course and has been working at Kingdom Trail Association for 11 years. CJ is now the Trails Manager for the renowned 100+ mile mountain bike trail system located in East Burke, Vermont. He assists in the management and everyday operations of the 501 (c) 3 non-profit organization, which includes direct management of the trail crews; trail design, construction and maintenance, general conservation, and operation and maintenance of machinery during both summer & winter seasons. He also serves as the Local Trails Director for the Vermont Trails and Greenway Council, assisting in the assurance, protection, and proliferation of quality and sustainable trails throughout the state. He holds a degree in Adventure Based Programming from Lyndon State College, and is also a graduate of the National Outdoor Leadership School (NOLS) participating in a Summer Semester in the Rockies, Teton Valley Branch, Idaho. In 2004 he Thru-hiked the entire 2,100+ mile Appalachian Trail, traveling northbound from Georgia to Maine. He holds certifications in Wilderness First Responder and CPR as well as The Game of Logging Chainsaw Safety levels 1&2 and Storm Damage Clean-up. His passion for the outdoors is reflected in his crazy obsession of mountain biking, hunting, hiking, snowboarding, fishing, and any other excuse to get him in his natural outdoor surroundings.
Vinnie Spiotti (Adventure Leadership) has been an adjunct faculty member at Lyndon State College since 1995. Over the years he has taught classes in risk management, public relations and marketing, and outdoor program planning. A BSA Eagle Scout and graduate of Penn State University with a degree in Outdoor Recreation, he has lived, worked and recreated in the White Mountains of New Hampshire since 1984. Over the years he has worked at The Mount Washington Hotel as the Activities and Programs Director and Bretton Woods Ski Area, serving as the Ski Patrol Director and Assistant General Manager. For the past 18 years he has worked for the Appalachian Mountain Club in a number of management and leadership roles, most currently serving as the Director of Lodging Operations, responsible for AMC Destinations and service throughout New Hampshire and as far south as New Jersey. Additionally, he and his wife also own Bethlehem Trading Post, their own 18th century outdoor clothing and equipment company. He is also a historical reenactor and staff writer for a historical magazine.
Jamie Struck (Adventure Leadership) is the full-time Lyndon State College Adventure Program Coordinator. He teaches Rock Climbing 1 & 2, Ice Climbing, Mountaineering, Ropes Course, Expedition, and Mountain Biking. He holds certifications in the AMGA and AIARE level 1 certificate of completion as well as having 20 years of experience working with students of all ages in settings as diverse as private institutions to trouble youth programs. He has been working with the Lyndon State Adventure Program as a lead facilitator since 2000 and as an adjunct faculty skills instructor of the Mountain Recreation Management Department since 2006.
Jake Urban (Adventure Leadership) teaches Mountaineering, Expedition and Avalanche Level 2. With his wife and business partner, Marilynn Davis, they own and operate Jackson Hole Outdoor Leadership Institute, LLC. An educational think tank devoted to avalanche education and pre-hospital wilderness and urban emergency care. He is an Adjunct Faculty member at Central Wyoming College where he instructs Avalanche Education and Expeditionary Studies. He is the Training Director and Short Haul Team Member of Teton County Sherriff’s Office Search and Rescue. His affiliation with the American Institute for Avalanche Research and Education includes the roles of (AIARE) Level 1 & 2 Course Leader, Instructor Trainer, Advisory Board Member and Program Assistant. Jake is certified as a High Angle Rescue Technician, American Mountain Guides (AMGA) Single Pitch Instructor, Wilderness Emergency Medical Technician (National Registry, State of New Hampshire and State of Wyoming), Outdoor Emergency Care Technician, American Heart Association Instructor, American Red Cross Instructor, SOLO Wilderness Medicine Instructor, National Ski Patroller and NSP Instructor. Additionally, Jake supports the educational mission of the American Avalanche Association as a Professional Member and as a member of the Education Review Committee.