The Department of Recreation and Leisure Studies is a division of the Faculty of Health
For Michael Roycroft, there is no ‘typical’ day in the office. As the Manager of the Canmore Nordic Centre Provincial Park (CNCPP), every day brings new opportunities and challenges as he oversees the operation of one of Canada’s leading outdoor recreation and sport destinations.
Following a $25.6 million infrastructure upgrade, the Canmore Nordic Centre is one of the world’s leading Nordic facilities, host to World Cup skiing races, other championships, and recreation and sport events.
As Manager, Michael oversees a team of 13 permanent and 22 seasonal staff. Together, they manage the operation and use of the facilities and trail infrastructure. It’s a big job – Michael’s job is a mix of human resource management (e.g., team leadership and stakeholder relationships), administration (e.g., budgeting, policy development, capital project planning and implementation), facilities management (e.g., snowmaking, grooming), environmental stewardship (e.g., wildlife - human conflict and mountain pine beetle mitigation) and special event coordination (e.g., World Cup ski race facilitation).
To know-how to tackle this diverse portfolio was developed during his time in Recreation and Leisure Studies. “The program allowed me to develop a broad-based skill-set which has been essential for this position,” he explains.
I deal with stakeholders from within government, sport, business, the environment and the general public, and my degree has given me an understanding of how to communicate with, and mediate these sometimes opposing perspectives.”
What’s the best part of the job? “Being able to influence the development of one of Canada’s leading outdoor recreation and sport facilities,” Michael responds. “I also love being able to hop on my mountain bike from my office and access over 70km of amazing Nordic Centre trails on my lunch break!”