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2021 Best Parks, Recreation, Leisure, & Fitness Studies Colleges for Non-Traditional Students in California

27 Colleges
6,037 Bachelor's Degrees
$28,692 Avg Cost*

Finding the Best Parks, Recreation, Leisure, & Fitness Studies Schools for Non-Traditional Students

Best Parks, Recreation, Leisure, & Fitness Studies Colleges for Non-Traditional Students in CaliforniaIn 2018-2019, 6,037 bachelor's degrees were awarded to parks, recreation, leisure, and fitness studies students who went to a California college or university. This makes it the #12 most popular major in the state. This means that of the 54,385 bachelor's that were awarded in the country, 11.1% were from a college or university in the state.

This year's Best Parks, Recreation, Leisure, & Fitness Studies Colleges for Non-Traditional Students in California ranking analyzed 27 colleges that offered a bachelor's degree in parks and rec. This ranking identifies schools with high-quality parks, recreation, leisure, and fitness studies programs as well as strong support for students classified as non-traditional.

When determining these rankings, we looked at things such as overall quality of the parks, recreation, leisure, and fitness studies program at the school, affordability, and presence of non-traditional students. See our ranking methodology to learn more.

One Size Does Not Fit All

Since the program you select can have a significant impact on your future, we've developed a number of rankings, including this Best Parks & Rec Schools for Non-Traditional Students list, to help you choose the best school for you.

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. Go ahead and give it a try, or bookmark the link so you can check it out later.

2021 Best Parks, Recreation, Leisure, & Fitness Studies Schools for Non-Traditional Students in California

The colleges and universities below are the best for non-traditional students studying parks and rec.

Top 10 Best Parks, Recreation, Leisure, & Fitness Studies Schools for Non-Traditional Students

San Jose State University has taken the #1 spot in this year's parks, recreation, leisure, and fitness studies ranking for non-traditional students. Located in the city of San Jose, San Jose State is a public school with a fairly large student population. San Jose State also took the #1 spot in our Best Colleges for Parks, Recreation, Leisure, & Fitness Studies in California rankings.

About 3.5% of San Jose State students default on their loans in three years, which is lower than average. Approximately 8,114 students take at least one class online at San Jose State. There are roughly 8,139 part time students in attendance at San Jose State. San Jose State does offer credit for military training for eligible students.

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California State University - Sacramento comes in at #2 in this year's ranking. Sac State is a very large public school located in the city of Sacramento. In addition to being on our best for non-traditional students list, Sac State has also earned the #5 rank in our Best Colleges for Parks, Recreation, Leisure, & Fitness Studies in California ranking.

The student loan default rate at Sac State is lower than is typical, just 4.7% of students default in three years. There are approximately 12,655 students at Sac State that take at least one class online. About 6,435 of the students at Sac State are attending part time. Students may be able to receive credit for their military training, depending on their background.

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California State University - East Bay earned the #3 spot in our 2021 rankings. Cal State East Bay is a fairly large public school located in the large suburb of Hayward.

The school has a low student loan default rate of 5.4%. There are approximately 6,927 students at Cal State East Bay that take at least one class online. 3,742 of Cal State East Bay students are attending part time. Cal State East Bay does offer credit for military training for eligible students.

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The #4 spot in this year's ranking belongs to California State University - Long Beach. Located in the city of Long Beach, CSULB is a public school with a fairly large student population. CSULB not only placed well in our non-traditional rankings. It is also #2 on our Best Colleges for Parks, Recreation, Leisure, & Fitness Studies in California list.

The student loan default rate at CSULB is lower than is typical, just 2.3% of students default in three years. Approximately 10,391 students take at least one class online at CSULB. There are roughly 6,387 part time students in attendance at CSULB. Students may be able to receive credit for their military training, depending on their background.

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California State University - Chico comes in at #5 in this year's ranking. Chico State is a fairly large public school located in the city of Chico. As a testament to the quality of education offered at Chico State, the school also landed the #4 rank in our Best Colleges for Parks, Recreation, Leisure, & Fitness Studies in California ranking.

The school has a low student loan default rate of 5.1%. There are approximately 4,803 students at Chico State that take at least one class online. 1,577 students are part time. Eligible students may be able to receive credit for their military training.

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#6

San Francisco State University

San Francisco, CA

The #6 spot in this year's ranking belongs to San Francisco State University. SFSU is a fairly large public school located in the large city of San Francisco. As a testament to the quality of education offered at SFSU, the school also landed the #7 rank in our Best Colleges for Parks, Recreation, Leisure, & Fitness Studies in California ranking.

The student loan default rate at SFSU is lower than is typical, just 5.3% of students default in three years. There are approximately 10,593 students at SFSU that take at least one class online. 5,592 of SFSU students are attending part time. Students may be able to receive credit for their military training, depending on their background.

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#7

San Diego State University

San Diego, CA

San Diego State University earned the #7 spot in our 2021 rankings. SDSU is a fairly large public school located in the large city of San Diego. SDSU did well in our major quality rankings, too. It placed #3 on our Best Colleges for Parks, Recreation, Leisure, & Fitness Studies in California list.

The school has a low student loan default rate of 2.9%. Approximately 15,788 students take at least one class online at SDSU. About 4,852 of the students at SDSU are attending part time. Students may be able to receive credit for their military training, depending on their background.

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The #8 spot in this year's ranking belongs to California State University - Fresno. Fresno State is a very large public school located in the large city of Fresno.

About 5.0% of Fresno State students default on their loans in three years, which is lower than average. There are approximately 6,013 students at Fresno State that take at least one class online. 3,693 of Fresno State students are attending part time. Eligible students may be able to receive credit for their military training.

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The #9 spot in this year's ranking belongs to Humboldt State University. Humboldt State University is a moderately-sized public school located in the town of Arcata.

The school has a low student loan default rate of 7.4%. Approximately 1,865 students take at least one class online at Humboldt State University. There are roughly 824 part time students in attendance at Humboldt State University. Eligible students may be able to receive credit for their military training.

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#10

Sonoma State University

Rohnert Park, CA

Sonoma State University comes in at #10 in this year's ranking. Located in the large suburb of Rohnert Park, SSU is a public college with a medium-sized student population.

About 3.5% of SSU students default on their loans in three years, which is lower than average. Approximately 1,268 students take at least one class online at SSU. There are roughly 1,167 part time students in attendance at SSU. SSU does offer credit for military training for eligible students.

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Best for Non-Traditional Students Parks, Recreation, Leisure, & Fitness Studies Colleges in the Far Western US Region

Explore all the Best Parks, Recreation, Leisure, & Fitness Studies Colleges for Non-Traditional Students in the Far Western US Area or other specific states within that region.

State Degrees Awarded
Washington 497
Hawaii 238
Oregon 620
Alaska 33
Nevada 239

Parks & Rec Majors to Study

Major Annual Graduates
Health & Physical Education 9,736
Parks, Recreation & Leisure Studies 765
Recreation Administration 3

View All Parks & Rec Related Majors >

Majors Similar to Parks & Rec

Related Major Annual Graduates
Homeland Security, Law Enforcement & Firefighting 13,821
Public Administration & Social Service 9,004
Legal Professions 6,707
Military Technologies & Applied Sciences 99

View All Parks & Rec Related Majors >

Notes and References

Footnotes

*Avg Cost is for the top 25 schools only.

References

  • 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).
  • Veteran-specific data can be found at the U.S. Department of Veteran Affairs.
  • Credit for the banner image above goes to NPS Photo/Zurbuch.

More about our data sources and methodologies.

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