Penn State University has launched a new Professional Snowsports Education Certificate Program.

Created over nearly seven years of collaboration with the Professional Ski Instructors of America and American Association of Snowsports Instructors (PSIA-AASI), this program will introduce students to the fundamentals – People, Teaching, and Technical skills – of American snowsports instruction.

Since 2016, the Penn State Department of Recreation, Park, and Tourism Management in the College of Health and Human Development has been working closely with PSIA-AASI to evolve the association’s National Standards, Performance Guides, Assessment Forms, and to transform practices to be consistent across the country based on What Makes a Great Snowsports Instructor. The partnership has been key to aligning PSIA-AASI’s educational framework and structure, while unifying the professional experience for snow pros across the nation.

The online certificate program will also require students to prepare for and complete their PSIA-AASI Level I Instructor certification in alpine skiing, snowboarding, telemark skiing, or cross country skiing. Additionally, students will learn of leadership responsibilities and skills associated with working at ski areas and in winter environments.

Penn State Associate Professor of Values and Experiential Learning, Department of Recreation, Park, and Tourism Management, Pete Allison, Ph.D., who worked directly with PSIA-AASI to initiate and launch the program, said, “At Penn State we are excited to launch the first online certificate in Snowsports Education in partnership with PSIA-AASI. This offers opportunities for university credit and recognition, and valuing of the skills involved in becoming a Snowsports Professional.”

Snowsports enthusiasts, new instructors, and uncertified instructors seeking education to support their entry into the snowsports industry are encouraged to apply now to the Professional Snowsports Education Certificate program for the spring semester.