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Want to schedule a meeting with a campus recreation professional and NIRSA Board Member?

Introducing NIRSA Board Member Connect: every member’s opportunity to schedule a meeting with a NIRSA Board Member over Zoom. Schedule a day and time to ask a question, learn more about their career, discover new opportunities, or simply make a connection. Get started by clicking a link to review their calendar and schedule a meeting today!

Dr. Derek Hottell

Dr. Derek Hottell has worked in higher education for over sixteen years in various institutional settings throughout the United States, but he has spent the majority of his professional career working in collegiate recreation. He began his career at his alma mater, Western Kentucky University (WKU), as a Graduate Assistant of Sport Clubs and later became the Sport Club Coordinator. After working at WKU for four years, he moved to Seattle University to be the Assistant Director for Recreational Sports before being promoted to the Director of University Recreation. During his tenure at Seattle University, he guided the construction of a $10 million fitness center addition as well as a $6 million renovation of an outdoor sport field. Additionally, he led a team of professionals at Seattle University who successfully increased programming, participation, revenue, and the operating budget.

He left Seattle in 2012 to pursue his Ph.D. in Higher Education Administration full-time at Boston College while also working as a Doctoral Assistant in the Office of the Dean of Students. In this capacity, he acted as a conduct hearing officer and Title IX advocate and assisted with outreach and support for students who identify as LGBTQ+. Since 2015, he has been the Director of Recreational Sports at Virginia Commonwealth University (VCU). His team at VCU has increased revenue generation, expanded programming, increased participation, and improved patron satisfaction.

Derek received his Ph.D. from Boston College in 2016. He has presented and published on the topics of student persistence, survey methodology, racial bias, campus engagement, and social media. He has been active in campus and national committees throughout his career. Most notably, he has served NIRSA as a member of the board of directors and audit and finance committees since 2019. Previously, he has been a member of the Research and Assessment Committee, Assembly, Honor Award Committee, and Sport Club Committee to name a few.

Derek and his wife, Megan, have two children under the age of three, so he mainly enjoys walking his dog, watching sports, listening to podcasts, visiting the playground, dance parties in his living room to the Temptations greatest hits, and reading books about parenting.

Connect with Derek