Pursue a Career in Ski Area Management with a CMC Ski Area Operations Degree

Learn the specialized technical and management skills needed at ski resorts

Put your passion to work with a degree in Ski Area Operations at Colorado Mountain College — our program is one of two offered in the entire country!

With five major mountain resorts, including Breckenridge and Vail, about an hour from campus, the Ski Area Operations program keeps you close to the sport you love and well-versed on the ski area management industry trends.

The Ski Area Operations degree at Colorado Mountain College is the most comprehensive training program of its kind in the nation, and the only one in the heart of Rocky Mountain ski country.

CMC Ski Area Operations graduates are distinguished by their blend of technical and hands-on training. From home base in Leadville, they take their skills to work in mountain resorts all over the world.

Prepare for a job in:

  • Lift installation
  • Ski area management and design
  • Mountain operations
  • Safety management

In addition to an Associate of Applied Science: Ski Area Operations, you can earn certificates in:

Get real experience at world-class Colorado ski resorts

The best way to learn Ski Area Management is to experience it first-hand. Drive a snow groomer. Help build a new ski trail. Repair a gondola. Colorado Mountain College's epic locale and hands-on philosophy give you the chance to actively work on some of the most notable slopes in the nation.

Hands-on opportunities to:

  • Work on major ski competitions such as the World Cup races
  • Be involved in large-scale international events
  • Network with high-level ski and snowboard professionals
  • Intern at any winter resort in the world
  • Learn about the wide range of mountain conditions
  • Use state-of-the-art equipment and cutting-edge technology

Required internships take students to their choice of any winter resort in the world. As an intern you are paid regular wages and can expect guidance and supervision from both ski area management personnel and your Colorado Mountain College Ski Area Operations instructors. Many students make contacts during their internships that lead directly to employment.

Program News

'Snowboarding forever' with the Ski Area Ops program

At twenty-seven years old, Colin Whitaker’s resume is impressive; Four years of ski patrol, a degree in Ski Area Operations with a certificate in Slope and Trail Maintenance, and exposure to all aspects of mountain operations at various resorts around Colorado. Read more: ‘Snowboarding forever’ with the Ski Area Ops program

Ski Ops Grad Lands Job at Hometown Mountain

Dallas Zamora is returning to the mountains he grew up on, and bringing his career with him.  Thanks to his degree in Ski Area Operations and three years of professional experience on his resume, Dallas landed a job as a Terrain Park Cat Operator at Powder Mountain in Eden, Utah—just 40 minutes from his hometown. Read more: Ski Ops Grad Lands Job at Hometown Mountain

Ski area operations education launched emergency medical career

Reed Clawson had his mind set on being a professional ski patroller. He never expected to be working as a flight paramedic with a helicopter team.

“I wanted to make ski patrolling as viable a career as I could. But all these doors opened because of the training and schooling, and led me in the direction I went,” said Clawson, 34, of New Castle, a 2012 graduate of Colorado Mountain College. Read more: Ski area operations education launched emergency medical career