Academies are honorific societies composed of the most accomplished leaders of a profession. Individuals elected to inclusion in an Academy have continuing dialogue regarding the critical issues facing their field and provide expertise and counsel on how best to address these issues in order to advance their profession. The National Academy of Recreational Therapists (NART) would be based on the founding principle that having an established clearinghouse for exchange of ideas by recognized experts in the field could result in significant contributions to recreational therapy practice.
The central purpose of the Academy is the advancement of recreational therapy by recognition, education, research, scholarly activity, advocacy and the provision of advice to decision makers. This purpose is carried out in these ways:
First, by recognizing outstanding scholars and practitioners, it establishes a network among those who have significantly contributed to the advancement of recreational therapy. (By-Laws Objectives 1, 3, 4)
Second, through its meetings and other activities, it establishes forums for exchanging knowledge and ideas advancing the intellectual understanding of recreational therapy. (By-Laws Objectives 1, 2, 3, 4)
Third, by the activities of its committees and individual members, it encourages and promotes research and the scholarly study of recreational therapy. (By-Laws Objectives 1, 3, 4)
Fourth, by the activities of its committees and individual members, it promotes the rigorous preparation of the next generations of recreational therapy scholars and practitioners. (By-Laws Objectives 1, 4)
Fifth, by the advocacy of its committees and individual members, it promotes broader public understandings of recreational therapy. (By-Laws Objectives 1)
The Academy operates under a set of by-laws that provides structure for the organization. The organization is incorporated as a non-profit corporation.