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2021 Best Value Colleges for Parks, Recreation, Leisure, & Fitness Studies in North Carolina

26 Colleges
2,919 Bachelor's Degrees
$25,183 Avg Cost*

Finding the Best Value Parks, Recreation, Leisure, & Fitness Studies School for You

Best Value Colleges for Parks, Recreation, Leisure, & Fitness Studies in North CarolinaIn 2018-2019, parks, recreation, leisure, and fitness studies students earned 2,919 bachelor's degrees from a North Carolina school, making the subject the 8th in the state. This means that of the 54,385 bachelor's that were awarded in the country, 5.4% were from a college or university in the state.

This year's Best Value Colleges for Parks, Recreation, Leisure, & Fitness Studies in North Carolina ranking analyzed 26 colleges that offered a bachelor's degree in parks and rec. To us, 'best value' doesn't just mean the school with the lowest overall costs. Instead, we are looking at those parks and rec schools that offer a high quality educational experience at a price lower than expected.

To determine the average cost, we look at total expenses - such as tuition, fees, room and board, books, and other related expenses - and then subtract the average financial award a student receives. Knowing this amount can help you determine how much you may have to borrow in loans or take out of savings. Depending on your income and other factors, the cost for you to attend a particular school may be more or less.

One Size Does Not Fit All

The parks and rec school you choose to invest your time and money in matters. To help you make the decision that is right for you, we've developed a number of major-specific rankings, including this list of the Best Value Parks & Rec Schools.

In addition to our rankings, you can take two colleges and compare them based on the criteria that matters most to you in our unique tool, College Combat. Test it out when you get a chance! You may also want to bookmark the link and share it with others who are trying to make the college decision.

2021 Best Value Parks, Recreation, Leisure, & Fitness Studies Schools in North Carolina

The following schools top our list of the Best Parks, Recreation, Leisure, & Fitness Studies Colleges for the Money.

Top 10 Best Value Parks, Recreation, Leisure, & Fitness Studies Schools

Our rankings recognize Western Carolina University as the #1 school in this year's rankings. Located in the distant town of Cullowhee, WCU is a public college with a large student population. WCU did well in our quality rankings, too. It placed #9 on our Best Colleges for Parks, Recreation, Leisure, & Fitness Studies in North Carolina list.

It takes about 4.4 years for the average student at WCU to complete their degree, and it costs about $15,387 per year to attend the school. When we combine these numbers, we estimate that the cost to get a bachelor’s degree from WCU is $67,549. When you graduate sooner, you can save a lot of money.

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Appalachian State University landed the #2 spot in our 2021 rankings for best value parks, recreation, leisure, and fitness studies schools. Appalachian State is a fairly large public school located in the town of Boone. Appalachian State also took the #5 spot in our Best Colleges for Parks, Recreation, Leisure, & Fitness Studies in North Carolina rankings.

The average student at Appalachian State graduates in less than 4.3 years, and on average, the annual cost to attend the school is $22,137. This makes the estimated cost of a bachelor’s degree from Appalachian State be around $95,410. Graduating sooner can prevent you from having to pay more money out of pocket.

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The #3 spot in this year's ranking belongs to University of North Carolina at Greensboro. UNC Greensboro is a fairly large public school located in the large city of Greensboro. As a testament to the quality of education offered at UNC Greensboro, the school also landed the #6 rank in our Best Colleges for Parks, Recreation, Leisure, & Fitness Studies in North Carolina ranking.

The average student at UNC Greensboro graduates in less than 4.5 years, and it costs about $22,093 per year to attend the school. This makes the estimated cost of a bachelor’s degree from UNC Greensboro be around $98,756. The sooner a student graduates, the more money they can save.

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Our rankings recognize Johnson & Wales University - Charlotte as the #4 school in this year's rankings. JWU Charlotte is a small private not-for-profit school located in the city of Charlotte. JWU Charlotte also took the #2 spot in our Best Colleges for Parks, Recreation, Leisure, & Fitness Studies in North Carolina rankings.

It takes about 4.1 years for the average student at JWU Charlotte to complete their degree, and the estimated yearly cost for the school is $31,102. This makes the estimated cost of a bachelor’s degree from JWU Charlotte be around $128,762. Graduating sooner can prevent you from having to pay more money out of pocket.

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The #5 spot in this year's ranking belongs to North Carolina Central University. Located in the large city of Durham, North Carolina Central University is a public college with a moderately-sized student population.

The average student at North Carolina Central University graduates in less than 4.7 years, and the average full-time cost to attend the school is around $24,927. Thus, the average cost to get a bachelor’s degree from the North Carolina Central University is $115,911. When you graduate sooner, you can save a lot of money.

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#6

East Carolina University

Greenville, NC

The #6 spot in this year's ranking belongs to East Carolina University. ECU is a fairly large public school located in the small city of Greenville. ECU also made our Best Colleges for Parks, Recreation, Leisure, & Fitness Studies in North Carolina list, coming in at #7.

It takes the average student at ECU about 4.4 years to graduate, and the estimated yearly cost for the school is $26,107. Putting this cost and the average time to graduate together, we find that the average amount you’ll pay to get a bachelor’s degree from ECU is $115,915. When you graduate sooner, you can save a lot of money.

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University of North Carolina at Wilmington comes in at #7 in this year's ranking. UNCW is a large public school located in the midsize city of Wilmington. UNCW not only placed well in our value rankings. It is also #4 on our Best Colleges for Parks, Recreation, Leisure, & Fitness Studies in North Carolina list.

The average amount of time it takes for a student to receive their degree at UNCW is 4.3 years, and the yearly average cost to attend the school is $29,031. This makes the estimated cost of a bachelor’s degree from UNCW be around $124,833. When students graduate in a lesser amount of time, they can save thousands of dollars.

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Our rankings recognize North Carolina State University as the #8 school in this year's rankings. Located in the large city of Raleigh, NC State is a public school with a very large student population. NC State also took the #1 spot in our Best Colleges for Parks, Recreation, Leisure, & Fitness Studies in North Carolina rankings.

The average amount of time it takes for a student to receive their degree at NC State is 4.4 years, and on average, the annual cost to attend the school is $28,493. This makes the estimated cost of a bachelor’s degree from NC State be around $124,799. The sooner a student graduates, the more money they can save.

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University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill landed the #9 spot in our 2021 rankings for best value parks, recreation, leisure, and fitness studies schools. Located in the small city of Chapel Hill, UNC Chapel Hill is a public school with a fairly large student population. UNC Chapel Hill also made our Best Colleges for Parks, Recreation, Leisure, & Fitness Studies in North Carolina list, coming in at #8.

The average student at UNC Chapel Hill graduates in less than 4.1 years, and on average, the annual cost to attend the school is $26,820. When we combine these numbers, we estimate that the cost to get a bachelor’s degree from UNC Chapel Hill is $109,694. If you can shave even one term off your degree, you can save a substantial amount of money.

Full Parks, Recreation, Leisure, & Fitness Studies at University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill Report

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#10

Winston - Salem State University

Winston-Salem, NC

Winston - Salem State University comes in at #10 in this year's ranking. WSSU is a medium-sized public school located in the medium-sized city of Winston-Salem.

It takes about 4.6 years for the average student at WSSU to complete their degree, and the average full-time cost to attend the school is around $19,534. This makes the estimated cost of a bachelor’s degree from WSSU be around $89,856. When students graduate in a lesser amount of time, they can save thousands of dollars.

Full Parks, Recreation, Leisure, & Fitness Studies at Winston - Salem State University Report

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Best Parks, Recreation, Leisure, & Fitness Studies Colleges in the Southeast Region

Explore all the Best Parks, Recreation, Leisure, & Fitness Studies Schools in the Southeast Area or other specific states within that region.

State Degrees Awarded
Mississippi 864
Florida 1,701
Virginia 1,353
Georgia 1,605
Alabama 549
Tennessee 2,036
West Virginia 859
South Carolina 1,106
Louisiana 541
Kentucky 890
Arkansas 626

Parks & Rec Majors to Study

Major Annual Graduates
Health & Physical Education 2,355
Recreation Administration 385
Parks, Recreation & Leisure Studies 174
Outdoor Education 5

View All Parks & Rec Related Majors >

Related Major Annual Graduates
Homeland Security, Law Enforcement & Firefighting 1,877
Public Administration & Social Service 1,551
Legal Professions 7

View All Parks & Rec Related Majors >

Notes and References

*These averages are for the top 25 schools only.

  • The Integrated Postsecondary Education Data System (IPEDS) from the National Center for Education Statistics (NCES), a branch of the U.S. Department of Education (DOE) serves as the core of the rest of our data about colleges.
  • Some other college data, including much of the graduate earnings data, comes from the U.S. Department of Education’s (College Scorecard).
  • Credit for the banner image above goes to NPS Photo/Zurbuch.

More about our data sources and methodologies.

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