Activities Director: Job Profile & Occupational Outlook
Activities directors are typically referred to as recreational therapists. While their services are used in many settings, these professionals typically focus on areas like rehabilitation and skill improvement. They may enter the workforce with a bachelor's degree and professional certification.
Activities Director Job Profile
According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), activities directors, often referred to as recreational therapists, use recreational activities to help individuals who are sick or disabled (www.bls.gov). The types of activities they use vary, and may include arts and crafts, games and field trips. The BLS states that recreational therapists treat individuals who suffer from stress, depression or impaired motor skills. These professionals often observe patients during activities to monitor their progress and may work with other health and social service professionals to determine where additional improvements are needed.
Undergraduate programs in recreational therapy include coursework in behavioral and physical science, counseling and psychology. Students may also apply their learned techniques, application methods and assessments in their field experiences, which typically involve a full-time internship that places them under the supervision of experienced therapists.
Licensure and Certification
The BLS indicates that some states have licensing requirements for recreational therapists, such age limits, minimum academic standards and professional certification. The Health Professions Network (HPN) indicates that qualified recreational therapists hold the Certified Therapeutic Recreation Specialist (CTRS) credential (www.healthpronet.org). This credential is offered through the National Council for Therapeutic Recreation Certification (NCTRC), and requires individuals to have a bachelor's degree or be near graduation, complete a formal internship and pass the certification exam, which includes topics in recreational theory, implementation and assessment (www.nctrc.org).
Activities Director Occupational Outlook
The BLS states that employment opportunities for recreational therapists were expected to increase by 17% from 2010-2020. Among the factors that the BLS cites for this anticipated increase are the growing number of elderly citizens and expanding federal funding for children with disabilities. Job opportunities will be available in public and private industries, such as nursing homes, government facilities and schools. Individuals who are experienced with certain populations may have better opportunities.
In May 2012, the BLS reported that the median annual salary of a recreational therapist was $42,280. The BLS indicated that recreational therapists who work in nursing care facilities, the largest employer, earned a mean wage of $38,710 annually, while the federal government was the highest paying employer with an annual mean wage of $65,400. PayScale.com indicates that pay may vary substantially by the professional certification held and experience.
Related to Activities Director: Job Profile & Occupational Outlook
- Recently Updated
The title of activities director applies broadly to fields as diverse as education, event planning, gerontology and human...
Learn how to become a certified activities director. Research the job description and the education and certification...
Art administration is a competitive field. Read on to find out what it's like to work as a gallery director and learn what it...
Open education is becoming increasingly popular as technological innovation allows for the digital sharing of information and...
- Become a Design Director: Training and Career Guide
- Preschool Education Director: Career Info and Requirements
- Leaders in Literacy: Education Portal Speaks With the Director of SCALE
- Neurologist: Job Requirements and Description
- Merchandise Manager: Job Description, Duties and Requirements
- Online Masters in Wildlife Management Degree Program Overview
- Curriculum Developer: Job Description and Education Requirements
- Become a Director of Student Affairs: Education and Career Roadmap
- How to Become a Director of Medical Records: Step-by-Step Career Guide
- Design Consultant: Job Description and Education Requirements
- Online Security Guard Classes, Courses and Training Programs
- Overview of Biomedical Equipment Technology Courses