Outdoor Recreation Therapy


About This Program

Helping individuals can be a calling in life. The Outdoor Recreation Therapy program focuses on providing outdoor recreation opportunities for individuals with a wide variety of disabilities. You will gain skills in outdoor practicum, leadership, and teaching all while working with individuals experiencing cognitive, emotional, physical, and mental disabilities.

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Not ready to apply? Request Information or call admissions at 888-223-8068


Degrees & Credits

A.S. Degree (60 credits)


Program Features

Learn basic skill sets with options for unique training

The Outdoor Recreation Program gives you all of the basic skill set you will need to begin your career in the field. Vermilion also features the opportunity to take additional training such as:

  • ACA Coastal Kayak Certification
  • Outdoor Leadership Capstone – focus on combined skills
  • Expedition Courses – Extended excursions into outdoor settings
  • Outdoor Pursuits II – Specific hands-on knowledge and experience in a more advanced outdoor setting


Mark Carlson

Outdoor Leadership Instructor

Meet Our Alumni

Lauren Bellefeuille

Outdoor Recreation Therapy

Minnesota North - Vermilion

Experience and education
I am currently going to south-west state for my masters in Occupational therapy. I have also worked at Rural Living Environments in Babbitt, Minnesota during my summers between college and full time after I finished at Vermilion. I recently took an immersion trip to Costa Rica to work with a local pre-school where nobody spoke English, which was super-rewarding!

Current employer
Meridian Services

Resource Counselor. My responsibilities include working with people with disabilities and helping them with everyday living. This includes job coaching, feeding, taking them to appointments, helping them with balancing a checkbook, bathroom needs, administering medication and helping them when they have seizures.

Favorite Vermilion memory
All the field trips we had in adaptive techniques class with Mark Carlson! My favorite outing was when we went to St. Cloud for adaptive rock climbing.

Additional Information


Many students start with an Outdoor Recreation Therapy program in order to pursue careers working in outdoor education and therapy. Yet the degree program also lends itself to working in many fields including teaching, psychology, and sociology. Specific transfer agreements have been set up with Winona State University.