Tourism Institute

Tourism Institute is designed to offer students in the Tourism and Special Events concentration outstanding opportunities for field-based learning in various locations, both nationally and internationally. 

The Tourism Institutes are experiential, field-based courses that run in both Wintermester (during winter break) and Maymester (following spring semester). These courses combine classroom and place-based learning in countries such as France and the Bahamas. You will earn 9 credits towards your 12 credit tourism concentration during one of these institutes. We cover issues such as cultural immersion, sustainable tourism efforts, marine and charter boat tourism, coastal and coral reef issues, social and cultural exchange, and development of personal travel ethics.  


Tourism Institute (France)

This is typically offered every other year during Wintermester through our department. Over winter break, we visit France and spending about five days in Paris visiting world-renowned sites like the Louvre, L’ Arc de Triomphe, Versailles, Notre Dame, and several other sites throughout this remarkable city, which is steeped deep in architectural, artistic and cultural history. 

We then take a train about 200 miles south to the Avergne region of France, with strong viticulture, recreation and mountain influences.  Here we meet students with our sister university – Blaise-Pascal, and spend another five days in the quaint riverside city of Vichy, which is known for its healing spring waters, picturesque parks and ideal climate. 

During this course we cover topics such as tourism trends, economic impacts of tourism, travel ethics, cultural learning, tourism motivations and cultural appreciation.  For more information, please contact Mrs. Katie Newman.


Tourism Institute (Bahamas)

This is offered every Maymester and includes a full week of sailing aboard a 57-foot catamaran in the Bahamas, where we will have unparalleled opportunities for snorkeling, sailing, beach excursions, Bahamian culture exchange, island resort tours, arts, music and attractions. 

The sailing portion will take place in the protected Sea of Abaco, Bahamas, ringed by pristine coral reefs, and quaint, friendly Bahamian villages and towns. We will anchor in harbors, and off of small sandy cays such as Treasure Cay, Guana Cay, Hopetown, Little Harbour and Man-o-War Cay.

We will engage in excursions to learn about coral reef management, beach use, island tourism and trends in marine and charter boat tourism. While sailing, we will visit remote islands for a closer look at local fish, reefs, beaches, historical attractions and their interrelationships with local livelihoods.  We will experience tourism as both a provider and an end-user, developing a critical eye for sustainability issues and tourism impacts culturally, economically and ecologically. 

This course will provide invaluable information and experience in marine-based tourism which has become one of the world’s most popular tourism industries. Specific topics covered during this course include tourism management, sustainable tourism, service industry response to demand, coastal tourism issues, protection of a diversity of experiences, and attraction and provision of tourism settings.


The course includes one week of preparation, planning and learning before embarking on a 1-week sailing cruise in the Bahamas, followed by two weeks of student-led regional tours in the New River Valley upon our return.  These tours include destinations such as Floyd County, Claytor Lake, Cascades Waterfall, The New River, and Downtown Roanoke and many more. 

The estimated course fee covers airfare to the Bahamas from Charlotte, N.C., food in the Bahamas, charter fees, tours, entrance fees and accommodations aboard the sailing yacht. Fees vary based on fluctuating costs of travel. For more information please contact Dr. Joshua Carroll.

See the Tourism Institute (Bahamas) video here

Note: The Tourism Institute includes nine credit hours towards the Tourism and Special Events concentration.

Frequently Asked Questions

How many credits is the Tourism Institute?

What are the costs for Tourism Institute?

  • There are fees beyond the standard tuition costs of 9 credits at Radford University.  Therefore, students pay the standard cost of 9 credits, plus the course fee. The course fees cover travel expenses, food and additional resources that are needed for your course.

Who do I talk to about this to get additional information?