Sustainable Trails Development Graduate Certificate


Courses Required


cost per credit hour
($1,552 for non-residents)


Total Credit Hours

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Curriculum developed and taught by faculty from

Degree Awarded: Sustainable Trails Development Graduate Certificate

Open Doors to a Better Path Forward

The Graduate Certificate in Sustainable Trails Development, offered by the Davis College of Agriculture, Natural Resources and Design, welcomes students from various fields who are interested in trails development, programming and management, as well as design. The demand for sustainable trails has increased in recent decades, and outdoor recreation can be a major economic driver for communities. While there are professional organizations offering short trainings, this curriculum is both more in-depth and more accessible. The program covers advocacy, design/build, and post-build opportunities. It features asynchronous online courses, with the capstone project offered either online or in-person (during the summer). Students may complete the graduate certificate on its own, or with a traditional graduate degree.

Learning Formats
  • Online Asynchronous
Start Date
  • To be announced

Meet Gary Phillips

Your personal admissions and enrollment coach

“Being a WVU graduate and a first-generation college student, I’m happy to be back to help you navigate the WVU System. Something WVU Online wants to do is assist you in creating your sense of community and continuity, making sure you have the answers to any and all questions.”
Gary Phillips profile.

Outdoor recreation can be a major economic driver for communities. Knowledge of sustainable trails has also increased in recent decades. The graduate certificate program in Sustainable Trails Development provides a great synergy with local trail development and programming efforts, including WVU’s 2020 International Mountain Bicycling Association Trail Accelerator Grant. The Mon River Trails were inducted to the Rails-to-Trails Conservancy Rail-Trail Hall of Fame in 2020, and Blue Ridge Outdoors magazine proclaimed WVU the best large college for outdoor adventure in the Southeast and Mid-Atlantic. In addition, Morgantown was selected in 2021 as the pilot city for the Youth Cycling Coalition.

The Sustainable Trails Development curriculum covers:

  • Advocacy: benefits of trails, funding sources, fundraising, planning for skills progression and shared use;
  • Design/build: site-responsive design, sustainability, construction materials/costs;
  • Post-build: volunteer/community engagement, interpretation, and ongoing assessment/maintenance.

The extra flexibility of a graduate certificate program allows students to complete the program either on its own, or with a traditional graduate degree, such as the Master’s in Landscape Architecture or PhD in Human and Community Development.

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