Knowledge Network

Outdoor Recreation as an Economic and Community Engagement Catalyst in Western North Carolina

Award Category: Innovation + Talent
Project Site: Outdoor Recreation as an Economic and Community Engagement Catalyst in Western North Carolina
Submitted By: Western Carolina University
Contact: Arthur Salido, Executive Director of Community and Economic Engagement and Innovation, 828.227.2587

Abstract

Western Carolina University and regional stakeholders are targeting outdoor recreation to catalyze economic development. The Growing Outdoors project, which represents a collaborative regional approach to expanding Western North Carolina’s (WNC) outdoor industry, was awarded $940,000 over three years by the Appalachian Regional Commission (ARC) in Fall, 2018. The project leverages assets within the region’s communities including a skilled workforce, manufacturing heritage, natural/cultural resources, and broadband to advance the outdoor economy and catalyze measurable job creation, investment, and entrepreneurship. Importantly, the project also supports timely economic diversification in WNC’s communities that are struggling economically.

University Economic Development Association

PO Box 97930
Pittsburgh, PA 15227
216.200.UEDA (8332)
info@universityeda.org