2016 Emerging Recreational Sports Leaders Conference

February 25-27, 2016 • The University of Southern Mississippi

Hotel & Travel
About ERSL

Host the Emerging Recreational Sports Leaders Conference on your campus!
In order to obtain the goals of the Emerging Recreational Sports Leaders Conference we need to keep costs low and provide the most suited environment to foster this type of dynamic learning. Please complete the following host site application to be considered for hosting the 2017 Emerging Recreational Sports Leaders Conference.
DEADLINE: April 15, 2016

Apply Today

This event is now over. Please contact NIRSA Professional Development for information about this event and ERSL 2016.

Learn about new career opportunities in the field of collegiate recreation through informational sessions and presentations in a supportive learning environment.

The educational and professional opportunities at the ERSL Conference are both broad-based and in-depth — from mock interviews with established collegiate recreation administrators to presentations on the changing landscape of recreational sports careers in our current economy.

Learn about ERSLC 2016

Pre-registration for ERSL is now closed.

On-site registration is available. For any questions please contact
ERSL Conference Committee Co-Chair Ashley Dent.

2016 ERSL On-Site Registration

Submit a Presentation Proposal

Presentation proposals are open! The proposal deadline has been extended to Friday, December 4.

Submit a presentation proposal for ERSL

Mock Interviews & Résumé Critiques

ERSLC 2016 Mock Interview

As with every skill you’ve ever learned, you have to learn a technique and then practice, practice, practice!

A mock interview will not only help you perfect your technique, but it will also allow you to get valuable feedback and coaching on your performance. Working with a professional and getting feedback on your performance in a mock interview is similar to working with a sports coach to learn how to improve your game — both will enable you to learn where your strengths lie and where you may need work to improve your performance.

Time spent practicing will assist you greatly in either situation. An added bonus to preparing and practicing is the self-confidence you will gain.

In today’s competitive job market, you must be prepared and in top shape.

ERSLC 2016 Mock Interview

This year the mock interview process will take on the form of “Speed Dating.”

This year’s mock interviews will proceed as follows:

Before we begin the Mock Interview process everyone (both students and professionals) who are participating will gather in one specific location. At this time we will be sure that everyone is paired up, then we will go over the instructions on how everything will take place. After providing directions everyone will head to our designated Mock Interview area. Once everyone is seated, the process will begin.

  • The interviewer will have 5 minutes to ask questions in an interview format.
  • Following the 5 minutes of interviewing there will be 3 minutes of follow-up about the résumé/interviewing techniques.
  • After the 8 total minutes have been completed the interviewee will move on the next station and the interviewer will remain in place.
  • We will provide about 1 minute of rotation time so everyone can get to their next interview on time.
  • After the 1 minute break we will begin the process all over again until 45 minutes have passed.
  • We will then return to the room in which we started where there will be time for debriefing. Students will have a chance to ask the professionals for tips and thoughts. The debriefing process will continue for 30 minutes providing about 10 minutes before the first educational session.

A timing device and bell/buzzer will be used to keep everyone on time. Warnings will be sent out 10 seconds prior to end of interviews.

ERSLC 2016 Mock Interview

If you’re interested in participating in or conducting a mock interview, please contact Emerging Recreational Sports Leaders Conference Committee Co-Chair Ashley Dent.

Those interested in participating as interviewees need to submit his or her resume to Ashley Dent by February 1, 2016.


Fees Early Bird: On or Before January 8, 2016 Between January 9, 2016 & February 5, 2016 Onsite
Professional from a Member Institution $110 $135 $160
Professional from a Nonmember Institution $135 $160 $185
Student Member from a Member Institution $75 $100 $110
Student from a Nonmember Institution $100 $125 $150
Retired/Emeritus Member $110 $135 $160
Associate Nonmember-Not Exhibiting $135 $160 $185
One Day Registration (members only):
Professional Member $60 $85
Student Member $60 $85
Associate Member $60 $85
Register Today!


With Service as one of our association’s strategic values, the 2016 ERSL Conference presents its attendees with volunteer opportunities in order to serve during the conference. Session monitors and registration managers are the two volunteer positions that this conference offers over its three days in Mississippi. Through this act of service, volunteers will be able to interact and connect with colleagues, get involved in very important capacities, and assist in the overall operation and success of the conference.

Please contact Tanaia Keyes if you are interested in volunteering during the 2016 ERSL Conference, or for more details.

Herman Williams Founders Outstanding Service Award

Seneca Wilson, 2015 Herman Williams Award recipient

Seneca Wilson, 2015 Herman Williams Award recipient

Click here to learn about the award honoring innovative leadership toward the achievement of substantial improvements of minorities in the field of collegiate recreation.

Preconference Events

Get a jump start at the ERSL Conference!

 Plan ahead! Preconference workshops & events are on Thursday, February 25, 2016.

Thursday, February 25
Cost: Free

This activity will encompass a lot of low elements/activities for students and young professionals to learn, grow, and lead. More details about this event will be available soon.

  Transportation will depart and return to the host hotel, Microtel Inn & Suites.

  Lunch is included.

Thursday, February 25
Cost: Free

Engage in this meaningful preconference service project with a selected non-profit off-campus organization in Hattiesburg. Please dress in comfortable clothes and close toed athletic shoes. More details about this event will be available soon.

  Transportation will depart and return to the host hotel, Microtel Inn & Suites.

  Lunch is included.

Register Today!

Schedule of Events

7:00am-9:00am — Breakfast (Mircotel Inn & Suites Lobby)

7:30am-9:00am — Preconference Registration (Payne Center-USM Campus)

9:00am-2:00pm — Preconference Activities

3:00pm-4:45pm — Registration/Check-In

5:00pm-6:30pm — Opening General Session

7:00pm-9:00pm — Meet and Greet

7:00am-9:30am — Breakfast (Mircotel Inn & Suites Lobby)

7:00am-8:00am — Early Morning Workout

8:30am-9:50am — Mock Interviews

10:00am-11:00am — Session I

11:10am-12:10pm — Session II

12:15pm-1:30pm — Take a Student to Lunch

1:40pm-2:40pm — Session III

2:50pm-3:50pm — Session IV

4:00pm-4:20pm — T-Shirt Exchange (TBD)

4:30pm-4:45pm — 2nd day Wrap Up and Day 3 Overview. Social Information Distributed

6:0pm-9:00pm — ERSL Social

7:00am-9:00am — Breakfast (Mircotel Inn & Suites Lobby)

7:00am-8:00am — Early Morning Workout

9:00am-10:00am — Session V — (TBD)

10:10am-11:10am — Session VI

11:20am-12:20pm — Session VII

12:20pm-1:30pm — Lunch, Closing Remarks

You can get a sense of this year’s program by reviewing the 2015 schedule.

Register Today!

Microtel Inn & Suites by Wyndham

While the ERSL room rate deadline has past, you can still save 20% by being a NIRSA member! Please use offer code: 1000010140 to take advantage of the discounted rate.


$69.99 a night (+ taxes and fees) for double occupancy


The group block designation is Emerging Recreational Sports Leaders Conference; to reserve your room call the hotel phone number above and mention ERSL.

You must reserve the room by January 24, 2016 in order to receive the ERSL room rate.

Hotel amenities for attendees include complimentary breakfast, parking, and WiFi.

Upon registration, NIRSA encourages all Conference attendees to reserve their hotel accommodations within the NIRSA room block. NIRSA relies on strong room block usage to secure ample meeting space, increase negotiation leverage for future institutes, and offset event expenses.

Airport Shuttle

We are currently working with the University of Southern Mississippi to organize shuttle transportation.

About the ERSL Conference

In 1992, the office of intramural sports at the Southern Illinois University-Carbondale established the first Emerging Recreational Sports Leaders Conference to encourage a strong future of leadership for minority students in the field of collegiate recreation.

The goal of the ERSL Conference has ever since been to provide minority students who are interested in careers in collegiate recreation with the tools and connections needed to succeed in this dynamic field.

With educational programming, opportunities for mentorship, and a platform for career networking, this unique conference empowers young minority students with the skills and knowledge that lay the foundation to building meaningful careers in the field of collegiate recreation.

The ERSL Conference encourages diversity in our association in an effort to better reflect the populations and demographics that NIRSA members serve.

Special thanks to the 2016 Emerging Recreational Sports Leaders Committee

  • Andrea Snead, ERSLC Co-Chair, University of Central Florida
  • Ashley Dent, ERSLC Co-Chair, Florida International University
  • Tim Collins, Program Committee Chair, California State University-Montery Bay
  • Barry Greene Jr., Programming, California State University-San Bernardino
  • Dexter Shorter, HBCU/Minority Recruitment, The Ohio State University
  • Candice Douglas, Hospitality & Sponsorships, Western Kentucky University
  • Mark Dixon, Hospitality & Sponsorships, Jackson State University
  • Nigel Harris, Socials, University of Texas at San Antonio
  • Tanaia Keyes, Volunteers, University of Georgia
  • Cherodie Cannon, Marketing & PR, Louisiana State University
  • Mark Crager, Host Committee Chair, University of Southern Mississippi
  • Thomas Deus, Host Committee, University of Southern Mississippi
  • Pamela Bullad, Host Committee, University of Southern Mississippi
  • Shawn Clark, Host Committee, University of Southern Mississippi

If you have any questions or concerns, feel free to email Andrea Snead or Ashley Dent

Interested in sponsorship opportunities? Email Heidi Cleary to discuss options. Call 541-766-8211.