It’s been a long, winding, and great road that I started travelling when campus rec captured my attention as a freshmen at UNC-Chapel Hill. I stared college as an astronomy major but had no idea what I really wanted to do. I was randomly assigned a roommate who worked as a student official and supervisor. I had been involved in sports my whole life until injuries got in the way, and I realized that my roommate had found a different way to be involved in sports and still have fun. I started officiating by the end of my freshman year and really enjoyed it.
Jim Eubanks started working at UNC and he opened my eyes to the possibility of campus rec being a career and really got me started on my career journey. Spring semester my senior year I changed my major to physical education. I began an internship at the start of my fifth year. Following graduation, I went to grad school at Western Kentucky where I had the opportunity to work as a graduate assistant under Mark “the Shark” Williams.
Twenty-two years later, I am the Assistant Athletic Director in charge of Recreation Programming at the University of Delaware. I oversee the IM program, climbing wall, technology, and “other duties as assigned.” This has been a great life for my family and I, and I can’t imagine doing it without my mentors and NIRSA.
1995 was my first national NIRSA conference in Albuquerque, NM. I was fortunate to join the Volleyball Rules Committee and that was where I really found what NIRSA stood for and was about. And I was “all in.” Since then, I have stayed active in NIRSA with committee work, mentoring hundreds of students, and supporting regional and national tournaments.
Over the years I have known many students and professionals who would not have been able to get where they are without assistance from the NIRSA Foundation. I have tried to give back during my career, and joining the Legacy Society was easy and shows a commitment to NIRSA, the NIRSA Foundation, and—most importantly—future NIRSA members.
My legacy gift will support future scholarship opportunities and student officials development. Scholarships have such a long-lasting impact—the information that the recipient receives supports them and strengthens their entire department and their program’s participants. I also support student officials development as it is the future of sport and, of course, it’s where I and so many of my peers got started. And it’s fun—the most fun I ever had working as an official was helping young children learn about the sport, the game, and themselves.
I believe in leaving every place I go a little bit better. Which is why becoming a Legacy Society member was such a natural decision for me. I hope to make things easier for someone in the future and to leave the NIRSA family better off. I hope you’ll consider doing the same—you can become a Legacy Society member today!
- For more information, please contact NIRSA Director of Philanthropy Kim Holmes.