One of the most unique traits of this Association is the interconnectedness of its members. We lovingly call the Annual Conference our “NIRSA Family Reunion.” We provide for each other during times of disaster. We celebrate the amazing work we do as humans of NIRSA. We couldn’t agree more with Reginald Ungos, 2017 Region VI Travel Stipend recipient, when he channels his inner Lilo by saying, “NIRSA is part of my ‘ohana because of all the friendly people in campus rec. ‘Ohana means family. Family means no one gets left behind.’”

On Tuesday, November 28, join your peers, your mentors, your colleagues, and NIRSA by making a donation in support of the NIRSA Foundation’s #GivingTuesday appeal. We’re all part of the same NIRSA ‘ohana, and together, we can ensure a thriving future for our NIRSA family, our profession, and our campus rec communities.

Your donations make a difference

Thanks to our donors, the NIRSA Foundation increases the number of scholarships available to NIRSA members each year to help NIRSA members take advantage of NIRSA’s many educational opportunities without worrying about the cost. There are more than 20 funds and endowments that rely on your donations to award scholarships.

“I was able to attend NIRSA 2017 thanks to the generosity of the NIRSA Foundation and its donors,” says Lisa Williamson, 2017 Barbara Brimi Heritage Scholarship recipient. “Through participation in the NIRSA Foundation Scholarship Breakfast and volunteering at the NIRSA Foundation table, I learned more about the NIRSA Foundation and the amazing generosity of NIRSA members. Being included in these activities allowed me to develop relationships with other professionals and leaders in the field and gave me a passion for giving back to the NIRSA community!”

In 2017, the NIRSA Foundation provided almost $32,000 in scholarships and stipends thanks to the generosity of donors. In 2018, the NIRSA Foundation will send more than 65 NIRSA members on scholarship to NIRSA events to gain valuable professional skills to reinvest in their own campus rec communities and ultimately in our vibrant organization as a whole.

Ashlee McHaney received a 2017 William Wasson Scholarship to attend the 2017 NIRSA Annual Conference, where she interacted with fellow student members and saw the “positive influence that NIRSA and involvement with recreation has had in their lives.”

“I am thankful each and every day to be a part of an organization that is constantly changing the lives of students for the better,” she says. “Consider donating to help us change lives, one student at a time.”

“I am thankful each and every day to be a part of an organization that is constantly changing the lives of students for the better.”

Innovation through research initiatives

The NIRSA Foundation and its donors support initiatives that strengthen the value of campus rec in higher education and beyond.

NIRSA Foundation donors support the peer-reviewed literature published in the Recreational Sports Journal. Last year alone, there were more than 22,100 downloads of full-text articles from the RSJ.

When you donate, you also support original, scholarly research that advances the profession by providing for the NIRSA Research Grant Program, which recently announced its 2017 recipients.

“Our NIRSA research grant has been invaluable,” says 2016 NIRSA Research Grant recipient Anthony Patterson, PhD. “Our award allowed us to take an innovative and thoughtful research approach to a complex issue while also paving the way for a mutually beneficial collaboration between academic and student affairs on our campus.”

The NIRSA Foundation also supports the Institutional Data Set, which continues to be the go-to resource for professionals needing benchmarking data.

“The IDS was very valuable as part of a program review process and also when looking at a potential upcoming facility construction project,” said Eric Patchett, Associate Director, Administration, at Colorado State University-Fort Collins. “I believe it has value for our profession both as an evaluation tool and as a decision-making tool.”

“The IDS was very valuable as part of a program review process and also when looking at a potential upcoming facility construction project.”

In the fall of 2017, the popular NIRSA Salary Survey will be incorporated into the IDS, making it an even more powerful tool for NIRSA members.

Leadership development through officials training

There’s a nationwide shortage of young officials at all levels of competition, and NIRSA Foundation donors are dedicated to the grassroots solution provided by NIRSA’s Student Officials’ Development Program. During the 2016-2017 season at the National Championship Series Basketball and Flag Football tournaments, NIRSA Foundation donors supported training opportunities for 104 up-and-coming student officials.

“The opportunities I have had through the NIRSA Championship Series have helped me become the professional I am today,” says Kurt Klier, Assistant Director at University of Maryland-College Park and Student Officials Development Campaign donor. “Knowing my donation helps current and future student officials is very comforting.”

“Knowing my donation helps current and future student officials is very comforting.”

The NIRSA Championship Series also had a huge impact on SODC donor Brooke Cochran, Coordinator of Club and Intramural Sports at University of Arkansas.

“The NIRSA Championship Series is an event I hold near and dear to my heart,” she says. “I see its effectiveness and impact on all involved. I’m all in when it comes to giving back to something that means so much to me and has provided me with so much!”

Join us and help spread the love

#GivingTuesday takes place on November 28 this year, but all donations received that week, between November 26–December 1, will benefit our 2017 #GivingTuesday appeal and count toward our goals of seeing 100 donors supporting their NIRSA family and raising $8,000 for a thriving campus rec community.

Part of the #GivingTuesday tradition is to harness the collaborative power of social media. After you donate, celebrate your gift and help the NIRSA Foundation spread the word by downloading the image below and posting it on social media! 

Download Facebook Sized Image
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You can come up with your own message or use this template:

I donated to @NIRSAFoundation on #GivingTuesday because I love my #NIRSAfamily and I support the future of #campusrec!

Post the message and image or set the image as your profile picture to show your support. We’ll be sending out virtual high fives in celebration and thanks for your contributions towards strengthening the entire NIRSA family!

Kim Holmes is currently the Director of Philanthropy at NIRSA. Kelley Hungerford is currently the NIRSA Foundation Coordinator at NIRSA.