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Extension and Outreach

We transform innovative research into practical resources that allow the recreation and tourism industries in North Carolina to maximize their economic, social and environmental impacts

Helping Local Communities Thrive

As a land-grant institution, NC State serves the people of North Carolina through sharing actionable knowledge and providing support services to local communities, businesses and government agencies. The Department of Parks, Recreation and Tourism Management exemplifies this commitment through our work to sustain and enhance recreation and tourism resources and opportunities. Our extension and outreach programs help to protect our state’s special places, such as parks, farms and tourist destinations, and to enhance the health and well-being of our residents, tourists and businesses.

Tourism is a big industry in North Carolina. Visitors to the state spend over $25.3 billion and generate over 230,000 jobs, supporting more than 45,000 businesses annually. Tourism provides economic development opportunities to rural and urban areas that have been negatively impacted by declines in traditional industries, including manufacturing and textiles. Our extension programs recognize the importance of tourism and allow the university to be a partner in planning and developing sustainable tourism resources across North Carolina and beyond.

The College of Natural Resources supports small businesses by helping them remain vibrant. We support communities to become resilient and thrive in the face of climate change and natural disasters. We help protect cultural resources and develop and grow sustainable tourism resources.

Resources for Practitioners and Communities

If you are an extension agent, business owner, community leader or a citizen seeking help with a tourism project, we offer a number of resources that can help you. Visit the NC State Extension Tourism website for additional information and resources.

Meet Our Staff

Dr. Carla Barbieri
Professor and Extension Tourism Specialist

Dr. Duarte Morais
Associate Professor and Extension Tourism Specialist
Dr. Whitney Knollenberg
Associate Professor and Extension Tourism Specialist
Ann Savage
Tourism Extension Associate

Featured Programs

People First Tourism

People-First Tourism is a marketplace for buying and selling genuine tourism experiences. This project links entrepreneurs trying to pursue dignified and sustainable livelihoods through tourism with adventurous and conscientious tourists interested in unique off-the-beaten-path experiences and in making positive impacts on the communities they visit.

Women in Agritourism

Agritourism experiences help to increase the number of food-aware consumers and increase their engagement with local food systems. Agritourism offers opportunities for people to visit working farms and participate in recreational or educational activities, such as guided farm tours, cooking classes, wine tastings, pumpkin patches, hayrides and harvest festivals.
The NC Women in Agritourism works to address the needs of North Carolina women in agritourism by identifying the factors challenging and contributing to their success. The project is funded by the College of Natural Resources and the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences at NC State University.