University of South Carolina

Tourism study brings together rivals

They may be fierce foes on the football field, but the University of South Carolina and Clemson University are proving that they can be partners in the boardroom as they work together to promote economic development in South Carolina.

The University of South Carolina’s Alfred P. Sloan Foundation Travel & Tourism Industry Center and Clemson University’s department of parks, recreation and tourism management are partnering to complete an economic-impact study of the 17 counties of the South Carolina National Heritage Corridor (SCNHC).

The SCNHC promotes economic development in rural areas of South Carolina through heritage tourism and is being developed by private citizens, governmental agencies, conservation groups, businesses and communities. Designated by Congress in 1996 as a National Heritage Area, the corridor runs from the foothills of Oconee County in the northwestern corner of the state, along the Savannah River, through the Edisto River Basin to the port city of Charleston.

“This partnership with Clemson University is just the beginning of what we can accomplish by working together: universities and businesses joining forces for the good of the state and sharing resources during these challenging economic times,” said Dr. Rich Harrill, director of the Sloan center.

The results will be shared with the National Park Service, South Carolina Department of Parks, Recreation & Tourism, partners and potential funders.

The study will provide independently researched information on the value of the corridor’s work toward the preservation, conservation and promotion of community resources and how effective this work has been in the development of heritage-based tourism.

Dr. Brian J. Mihalik, dean of the College of Hospitality, Retail and Sport Management said, “In a state rich with heritage-based sites, this study will be critical to tourism promotion, based not only on natural resources and attractions but on our heritage. This project highlights the cooperative efforts of two of the state’s leading research universities and will provide data that will serve as a catalyst for the growth of heritage corridors.”

For more information, contact Harrill at 803-777-7682.

By Office of Media Relations

Posted: 09/30/09 @ 12:00 AM | Updated: 10/09/09 @ 3:02 PM | Permalink