Recreational Therapy Program Application Information


Application Opens: October 1st
Priority Application Deadline:  FEBRUARY 15th
Applications will continue to be accepted on a rolling basis until all seats are filled.

The Recreational Therapy program at Grand Valley State University (GVSU) is a "Secondary Admission Program". Transfer students will follow the same process and meet the same criteria. Transfer students should also provide a copy of the course syllabus for any recreation/therapeutic recreation classes they want to transfer to Grand Valley State University.


Recommendation Form 

Summary & Verification of Experience Form


Application Materials Checklist:

  • GVSU Admissions Undergraduate Application (only required for students who are not currently a GVSU student).  Students must be admitted to Grand Valley State University prior to the program application deadline.
  • Recreational Therapy Secondary Program Application (see blue button above) -  Please Note: Plan to fully complete and submit this online application in one sitting as it cannot be saved to return to later.
  • Minimum cumulative GPA of 2.7
  • Prerequisites - CHM 109 and PSY 101 (or plan to complete by program fall start)
  • Personal Essay (2-3 pages) - Explain why the applicant has selected this career and what you have done to prepare for it.  Include your leadership and work with persons who have disabilities (attach to application)
  • Statement of Professional Goals (1-2 pages) - Identify your future goals in this career (attach to application)
  • Two Recommendations - preferred from therapeutic recreation specialists, related health care, or other recreation professionals with whom the applicant has completed volunteer or paid work hours, though recommendations from faculty member, employer or supervisor are also permitted (see link above)*
  • Summary & Verification of Paid/Volunteer Experience in Therapeutic Setting(s) form - Verify 50 hours minimum; 20 of these hours must be completed with a Certified Therapeutic Recreation Specialist (CTRS)/Recreational Therapist (see link above)*
  • Official and updated copies of ALL non-GVSU transcripts need to be sent directly to the GVSU Admissions Office at:
    Grand Valley State University
    Attn: Admissions Office
    1 Campus Drive - 150 STU
    Allendale, MI 49401
    [email protected]
  • For those applicants not currently enrolled at GVSU or have not yet taken GVSU classes, you should meet with a CHP academic advisor as soon as possible to review your transfer course equivalencies and program eligibility.  Go to our CHP Student Services Office website or call our office at (616) 331-5900 to set up a prospective student advising appointment.

All program application materials must be submitted by February 15 (for priority consideration), preferably attached to the electronic application or via email to [email protected]

If mailing materials is necessary, materials must be postmarked by February 15 (for priority consideration).
College of Health Professions - Student Services
Grand Valley State University 
301 Michigan St NE, Suite #113
Grand Rapids, MI 49503-3314

Questions about admissions and applications? 
Call the CHP Student Services Office at (616) 331-5900 or email Michelle Johnson at [email protected]


Applicant Notification:
Upon completion of the above requirements, applicants will be notified of provisional admission into the program and asked to set up an advising appointment with a member of the Recreational Therapy faculty to register for the first semester of RTX coursework (RTX 300, RTX 302, RTX 304 & RTX 389). Upon successful completion of these four courses (80% competency/B- in each course), they will be granted full admission into the Recreational Therapy program.


* Covid-related Adjustments:

“We will accommodate students who have been unable to complete their hours due to COVID. Please continue the process of applying, knowing that we understand that you are not able to get your hours for service learning prior to the application being due and even prior to starting the program. We will work with you.

For submission of recommendations during COVID, we will accept letters from other professions like profs and supervisors. We know that students are having a hard time volunteering and getting hours under a CTRS. We will definitely adjust while we are in the pandemic.”


The College of Health Professions (CHP) Student Services Office (SSO) in collaboration with CHP faculty and staff provides academic advising, admissions, and other student services to future and current undergraduate and graduate students in support of their academic, professional and personal development on the campus and within the greater community.


Grand Valley offers an excellent education at a reasonable cost. See tuition, fees, and financial aid information below.

Students should plan on additional cost for travel expenses to clinical placements which can be up to three hours from Grand Rapids. 

Page last modified September 25, 2023