(From left to right) Breaking ground on the new 78,030-square-foot- RAAM facility in downtown Sandusky are Ohio Rep. Steve Arndt (R., Port Clinton); Ohio Sen. Theresa Gavarone (R., Bowling Green); Andy Kurtz, BGSU Firelands dean; Sue Houston, BGSU chief of staff/VP of partnerships; Joe Whitehead, BGSU provost/Sr. VP for academic affairs; Dan Keller, BGSU Board of Trustees chair; Randy Gardner, Ohio Department of Higher Education chancellor; Duff Milkie, Cedar Fair executive VP/general counsel; and Rodney Rogers, BGSU president.

(From left to right) Breaking ground on the new 78,030-square-foot- RAAM facility in downtown Sandusky are Ohio Rep. Steve Arndt (R., Port Clinton); Ohio Sen. Theresa Gavarone (R., Bowling Green); Andy Kurtz, BGSU Firelands dean; Sue Houston, BGSU chief of staff/VP of partnerships; Joe Whitehead, BGSU provost/Sr. VP for academic affairs; Dan Keller, BGSU Board of Trustees chair; Randy Gardner, Ohio Department of Higher Education chancellor; Duff Milkie, Cedar Fair executive VP/general counsel; and Rodney Rogers, BGSU president.

BGSU, Cedar Fair partner for new degree opportunity

Final two years of classes will be taught in downtown Sandusky

Bowling Green State University and Cedar Fair Entertainment Co. have announced a partnership that will result in a new degree completion program in resort and attraction management (RAAM) offered by the University beginning in fall 2020. 

The program, which prepares students for a multibillion-dollar industry sector in which Cedar Fair is widely recognized as a leader, will be taught and led by BGSU faculty. The final two years of classes will be taught in downtown Sandusky at the 78,030-square-foot multipurpose facility developed by Cedar Fair. Now under construction, the facility will house classrooms, common spaces and apartment-style housing for students.

Coursework will focus in several areas, including revenue management, supply chain management, managing public safety and operations planning. There also will be co-ops at Cedar Fair’s 11 parks across North America that will be required.  

“We are excited to partner with Cedar Fair," BGSU President Rodney Rogers said. "This innovative partnership will benefit the University, Cedar Fair and the community through developing an educational program that will provide graduates with opportunities in the resort and attraction management industry. As a public university, we are always looking at how best to serve our communities and be responsive to meeting the needs and desires of those communities. Our partnership with Ohio-based Cedar Fair allows us to do just that in setting students up for success beyond graduation.”

As a public university, we are always looking at how best to serve our communities

“Our partnership with BGSU and its commitment and support have been instrumental in the development of a resort and attraction management school,” said Duff Milkie, Cedar Fair’s executive vice president and general counsel. “The internships that will be provided by Cedar Point will be a key additional element in the program and will facilitate the development of well-rounded, career-ready graduates. The downtown Sandusky location will also serve as a catalyst to the continued growth of the tourism economy in the region.”

While other universities offer programs in tourism management, BGSU's RAAM program will be unique. 

“It is a hybrid model that provides the first program to specifically address the unique needs surrounding amusement parks and similar destinations,” Milkie said.

The degree program has received approval from the BGSU Board of Trustees and the Ohio Department of Higher Education. The University anticipates about 200 students will enroll in the program.