Educational Opportunities

Elevate Your Skills: Explore PRPS High-Quality Training Opportunities

PRPS is dedicated to offering a variety of high-quality training opportunities to meet the needs of our members. Please click below to search for more information, dates, and fees for upcoming trainings. Our online calendar and store make registering easy! Questions? Contact the PRPS Training Staff Niki Tourscher, Director of Professional Development or Dan Hendey, Senior Education Manager at 814-234-4272. Check back often for updates and new opportunities!

Upcoming Learning Networks Schedule

Please note that all meetings will occur at 12 noon on the coordinating schedule date.

Meeting Dates coming soon!

“CPRP training with Dan Hendey was Amazing.  Dan organized a group of candidates, reviewed materials, shared study tools, provided test-taking tips, and helped each of us who registered gain the coveted certification”



PRPS offers swimming pool courses to ensure responsible pesticide use in pool management. Proper treatment, storage, and handling of chemicals are crucial for pool safety and environmental protection. "Swimming Pool Management 101" is an intensive program for individuals preparing for the Pennsylvania Department of Agriculture Core and Category 24 (Swimming Pools) pesticide applicator exams. The closed book exams must be passed within 180 days of each other for certification. For current license holders, the "Swimming Pool Re-certification Course" offers 6 Core and 4 Category 24 pesticide applicator credits. These courses are essential for maintaining pool management expertise and certification.

Become a Certified Pool & Spa Operator(CPO®)! The CPO program is the gold standard for the swimming pool industry and assures communities and elected officials that their facilities are under the care of a trained professional. This certification program will provide individuals with the knowledge, techniques, and skills required for proper pool operations.

PRPS offers a Fusion CPO Certification Course, allows you to advance at your own pace and convenience. Upon registration, you will receive the course handbook and access to eight (8) interactive online modules designed to guide you through the material. Participants will also attend a one-day online session with the instructor, consisting of an intensive morning review followed by the online exam. Completing the modules and passing the test certifies the participant certification as a CPO.

Urban Recreation Exchange

Join us for this in-person learning and networking event. The Exchange is designed to bring together regional urban and suburban parks and recreation professionals, champions, and volunteers to address issues around the role of parks for neighborhoods and communities. State and local speakers will share their experiences and findings to kick off and facilitate discussion and idea sharing about issues and opportunities native to urban and suburban parks and communities.  

This event is supported by the Pennsylvania Recreation and Park Society and the Pennsylvania Department of Conservation and Natural Resources. 

CPRP with Me - Study Group

PRPS offers an interactive online course designed to help park professionals prepare for the Certified Park and Recreation Professional Examination (CPRP), a widely recognized certification indicating professional competency. Participants use NRPA's Official Study Guide to review and discuss materials, focusing on a specific chapter each week. The course concludes with a general review, test-taking strategies, and a practice exam, fully preparing candidates for the CPRP examination. The certification is increasingly required for professional positions in park and recreation departments. The instructor, Dan Hendey, PRPS's Education Manager, is a CPRP and certified Pennsylvania Instructor with over 20 years of education and experience. The course boasts a 100% exam pass rate.

Fall Membership Meeting

The PRPS Fall Membership Meeting is a crucial annual event where Pennsylvania Recreation and Park Society members gather to collaborate, learn, and discuss industry trends. This meeting offers a platform for professionals in the field to network, share best practices, and gain insights into innovative approaches. Participants engage in informative sessions, workshops, and discussions, addressing key topics in the realm of recreation and parks. It's an opportunity for members to enhance their knowledge, stay updated on the latest industry developments, and foster valuable connections. The PRPS Fall Membership Meeting plays a vital role in advancing the field and ensuring the delivery of high-quality services to the community.

The annual Fall Membership Meeting is held on the third Wednesday in November.

Leadership Development Academy

The academy is geared towards up and coming leaders in recreation and parks or related fields who want to increase their personal capacity for leadership and efficacy. This training, while focusing on developing emerging leaders, will also benefit current leaders who wish to improve their skills and effectiveness. The academy is a 13-week program that features self-guided lessons, a two-day workshop (Dec. 5-6) and assigned team and personal projects. The program uses John C. Maxwell’s book, The Five Levels of Leadership as a roadmap for participants to increase their influence and progress as a leader. PRPS encourages all of our Districts to seek out and sponsor either emerging or current leaders who may benefit from this academy. Applicants can either be sponsored by their agency, PRPS district or self-apply. The deadline for applications is August 31, and the program begins the week of October 14. We hope that all of our districts will participate in this effort to increase professional knowledge and capability in our field. 

Learn more and apply today!

Parks & Playgrounds

The Parks & Playgrounds Certification Program offered by PRPS is a comprehensive training initiative that equips professionals in the field with the knowledge and skills necessary to create and maintain safe, enjoyable, and sustainable park and playground spaces. This program covers a diverse range of topics, from safety regulations and equipment maintenance to community engagement and design principles. By completing this certification, individuals can ensure that their parks and playgrounds meet the highest standards of safety and quality, providing communities with well-maintained and inviting spaces for recreational activities. The program empowers participants to enhance their expertise in park and playground management and contribute to the well-being of their communities.

Learn more about available PRPS Trainings & Workshops

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