U.S. Sport Tourism, Health & Society

Sport Tourism, Health & Society is a 1-week, 1-credit program that integrates the substantive areas of sports and recreation, tourism and medical sociology.  This program will consist of lectures, class discussion, and experiential learning presentations at both the University of Pittsburgh and other ACC and/or Power 5 peer universities. On this program we seek to engage everyone in this class with both the academic material and the material realities of sport and recreation of sport in the United States.

What You'll Accomplish: 

As an engaged and active participant in this program, you will have the opportunity to develop:


  • Knowledge of how high level athletics and recreational opportunities work and are structured
  • A critical understanding of the importance of physical recreation in Health Care and in US universities
  • A sense of the impact of politics and economics in D-I universities, professional sports and the media on sports and tourism


Raleigh is the capital of North Carolina and the second largest city in the state. It’s know as the "city of Oaks" for the number of tree-lined streets. Raleigh along with Durham and Chapel Hill are known for their research/technology roots and collegiate collaboration and rivalries. This tri-city region is known as the Triangle. Raleigh is one of the oldest examples of a planned city. After the American Revolutionary war, this site was chosen to be the state capitol. The city is laid out in a grid pattern with the state capitol at the center. The city is extremely easy to navigate.


Charlotte is the largest city in North Carolina and one of the 25 largest cities in the U.S. The city’s main areas of focuses on housing and neighborhood development, community safety, transportation, economic development and the environment. Charlotte is home to numerous higher education organizations, cultural centers and renowned healthcare facilities. Charlotte is also home to professional sports teams and organizations including the Carolina Panthers (NFL), Charlotte Hornets (NBA), Nascar Hall of Fame and the U.S. National Whitewater Center. 


Where You'll Live: 

Students will stay in a hotel, centrally located in the heart of Raleigh-Durham. Your classes will be held on-site at the hotel or off-site at one of the local universities or sports complexes. It is also a short walk to shopping, dining, entertainment and outdoor recreation. The hotel has modern amenities that will make you feel safe and comfortable during your program. Exact housing location will be finalized in the Spring semester and exact addresses will be provided a few weeks prior to departure. You can expect the following with your accommodations:


  • Double-occupancy hotel rooms
  • Towels and linens provided
  • Central heat/air-conditioning
  • En-Suite Bathroom
  • Highspeed Wi-Fi
  • Meeting space/business center
  • Controlled building access

We do our best to provide the most accurate information about housing and amenities but due to the nature of the locations in which we offer programs and limited availability, these items are subject to change.  Contact your program manager with any questions.

What You'll Study: 

You'll earn 1 credit on the U.S Sport Tourism, Health & Society program over spring break.. Everyone who participates on the program will take the same course. The course is taught by Pitt professor Dr. Mike Epitropoulos. You will also learn directly from others at fellow ACC Universitie. The course will be comprised of lectures, guest speakers, tours to other ACC Unviersities.
In this course you will study:

  • The Study of Sport Tourism and Recreation in the Social Sciences
  • Sports as an integral Social Institution in the US and around the world,
  • Recreation and Athletics as integral for Public Health
  • The Sociology of Higher Education
  • Sports Media

If you are seeking to count these courses towards a major, minor or certificate, please meet with your adviser to discuss this program and what the courses will fulfill for you. Information about how the courses on this program count towards general education requirements for different schools and campuses can be found here.

U.S. Sport Tourism, Health & Society (SOCXXXX)

Sport Tourism, Health & Society is a Sociology course that integrates the substantive areas of sports and recreation, tourism and medical sociology.  Combining lecture, class discussion, and experiential learning presentations at both the University of Pittsburgh and other ACC and/or Power 5 peer universities, we seek to engage everyone in this class with both the academic material and the material realities of sport and recreation of sport in the United States. The course will examine selected sport tourism, health and recreation & social topics of intellectual interest, at the community, university and professional levels. Studying sports and tourism through a sociological lens allows us to focus our attention on sports as a social institution. In contrast to other disciplines such as psychology or history, a sociological perspective on sport considers the ways in which the institution itself operates – who owns and controls sports, how resources and benefits are doled out – as well as how the institution of sport interacts with other social institutions such as the institution of higher education, tourism, the economy, the family, the labor market, systems of racial and gender inequality, etc. Some of the topics to be addressed are: 1) What is the structure of sports tourism, athletics and recreation in Power 5, Division I universities in the US?  2) Which social forces fuel sports as a business (the so-called Athletic Industrial Complex) at both the collegiate and professional levels? 3) How does a specific nation’s culture shape the sports that are played? What are “money-sports” that draw a paying audience or broadcast audiences on national TV?  4) US collegiate athletics and recreation:  the concepts of student-athletes, amateurism and exploited labor; student body athletic and recreational resources, access to recreational and health and sports medicine resources on college campus, 5) Title IX and gender and race equality in sports.  6) the structure of big time US collegiate and professional sports.   

Your Pitt Study Abroad Contacts: 

Tim Crawford

Hi Everyone! I’m Tim, and I am the Assistant Director for Domestic Study Away Programming. I have experience running international study abroad programs and programs here at home in the United States. I was fortunate to have many experiential learning opportunities, both international and domestic, during my college career. Being from a small town in Central Pennsylvania, my experiences opened my eyes to the rest of the world and helped open my eyes to different cultures and career opportunities I’d love to help you take advantage of the numerous experiential learning opportunities here at Pitt. Outside of the office, I’m always looking for the next adventure. I love traveling, hate sitting still and love doing anything outdoors, in all seasons. Personally, my family and I are on a quest to visit as many national parks as possible. I’d love to talk to you more about any of our study away programs, answer any of your questions and help you find the right opportunity. Please reach me via email at timcrawford@pitt.edu

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Your In-Country Contacts: 

Dr. Mike Epitropoulos

Dr. Mike Epitropoulos is the faculty director for the Pitt in Cyprus program. His interests are grounded first and foremost in teaching Sociology because he sincerely believes in the liberating power of the discipline. In that spirit, he has expressed his training and expertise in the Sociology of Development, State Theory, and Social Movements both inside and outside of the classroom. He has done so in the spirit of Public Sociology, which seeks to engage people from all spheres of society in a multiplicity of ways. He has spent most of his academic career engaging students in the classroom: over 160 courses, in both public and private universities, in the US and Europe, in two languages. He has published books on American Culture and Tourism Development. His current research project focuses on Sustainable Development in small-island, rural communities.



Items Billed by Pitt

  In-State Out-of-State
Tuition $776 $996
Program Fee $624 $624
Total Billed by Pitt $1,400 $1,600

Estimated Additional Out-of-Pocket Costs

Breakfast, Lunch & Personal Expenses $100

Total Estimated Program Cost

  In-State Out-of-State

Total Estimated Cost of Program
(Includes items billed by Pitt and additional expenses)

$1,500 $1,700

The amounts above are for the 2019-2020 academic year and should be used as estimates only. Pricing for 2020-2021 will be posted and announced in the fall term.

What's Included: 

As a part of the program fee, the following are included:

  • Tuition for 1 credit
  • Round-trip airfare to NC (does not include transportation to airport at beginning of program or at the end of the program)
  • Housing
  • Group dinners (most nights, except the first and last day of program)
  • Site visits of academic interest including other universities
  • Professional or collegiate sporting event


When You'll Go: 

Dates for the 2020-2021 academic year will be posted in the fall!

What Else You Need to Know: 
  • This program is highly mobile. You should expect to spend a significant amount of time traveling between destinations.
  • Remember that this is an academic program and that you should expect to invest the same amount of time and effort on your courses abroad as you would on a course at Pitt. 
  • There are required excursions and activities outside of normal scheduled classes.
  • Due to the nature of the program, the schedule is subject to change. There may be instances where a guest speaker or visit needs to be rescheduled. We ask for your patience and understanding in advance.