Bailey Adams began his journey in campus recreation at the University of Oregon, where he obtained a Bachelor’s of Science in Business Administration. At Oregon, he worked as an intramural official, intramural supervisor, operations manager, and youth camp counselor. Throughout his four years working for PE & Rec and his summer spent working as an intern for UCLA Recreation, he found his passion for working in campus recreation. Bailey is currently at Central Michigan University as the Graduate Assistant for Competitive Sports/Officials’ Development and is pursuing a master’s degree in sport administration.
Please provide a statement of your personal views on the role and contributions of collegiate recreation in higher education. In your response describe how collegiate recreation has influenced your development.
Collegiate recreation provides students, faculty, and staff with a safe space and programming to be themselves and escape the pressures of higher education. Through its inherent culture of inclusion, equity, and wellbeing, campus recreation allows students to try new things, meet new people, find themselves, and help figure out who they are going to be as they move forward to their professional careers and adulthood. This field has introduced me to some of my best friends, mentors, and has taught me many skills that I will keep with me throughout my professional career and personal life. Leadership, communication, and the ability to have difficult conversations with my peers, supervisors, and those that I supervise are just a few of the many skills I have developed in my time in collegiate recreation. Collegiate recreation is an essential part of higher education because it provides students with immense opportunities for growth physically, mentally, and emotionally and the opportunity to learn outside of the classroom.
Within the context of the NIRSA Strategic Plan, what area/item would you say is a major issue students face today? Please identify a student driven issue that we are currently face today and you would like to address during your term. How will you create solutions in your role on the Student Leadership Team to address it?
After long consideration, and thought, I believe that the integrated approach to health and wellbeing initiative, within the NIRSA Strategic Plan, would be the student driving issue that I would like to address during my term. I chose this issue because this can be applied to many different aspects of the student experience on an institution’s campus. Institutions that have a culture of wellbeing help better prepare students for success in whatever field they choose to go into. To successfully integrate a culture of wellbeing, campuses must break down the silos that separate departments and not only be inclusive of all students, faculty, and staff but of all departments throughout campus. Identifying ways in which we as campus recreation professionals can provide both student employees and patrons with ways to enhance their wellbeing is a student-driven issue that the student leadership team could address and take major steps forward with. The possibilities within the realm of wellbeing are almost endless. I think of professional development, mental health, financial wellbeing/education, and the practice of gratitude in the workplace as four areas of wellbeing that are easily applicable to students in campus recreation. Identifying best practices from my past and current institutions, institutions around the United States and Canada, and other companies is one way to find solutions for this issue. Figuring out how best to implement it at institutions throughout the region and association is another key component to finding solutions to this issue. Breaking down those silos on campuses and reaching out to our fellow student affairs professionals about the practice of wellbeing is another way to help address the issue. Most importantly though, making sure that people in leadership positions at institutions across the country are properly trained on how to provide students with wellbeing opportunities. Providing leaders on campus with a blueprint on how to enhance their students’ wellbeing is the ultimate way have an impact on students throughout the country.
In describing your contributions to NIRSA (i.e. presentations, volunteering, previous leadership roles, etc,), identify how your involvement and experiences meet the position criteria and qualify you to advocate for and serve the students of the Association.
As an active member in collegiate recreation for over four years and in NIRSA for almost two years, I have had the tremendous opportunity to be involved in the association in numerous ways. While serving as the Oregon State Student Leader, I was able to engage with the student members throughout the state. I was also able to help plan and present at the state meeting for Oregon as well as the Region VI Student Lead-On. Presenting to the students at the Oregon State Meeting on ‘NIRSA 101’ and at the Region VI Conference Student Lead-On about ‘The Basics of Networking’ was an experience that provided me with a lot of growth and opportunities to engage with the students. Along with this position, I have been fortunate enough to have officiated in three NIRSA Region VI Basketball Tournaments and also served on the operations committee for two regional basketball tournaments. Through these experiences, I have been able to meet many people from various institutions throughout the association. Whether it is learning a different training technique, finding out a new way to engage with students, or sharing stories with people from across the region and association, the association has provided me with some amazing opportunities to develop both personally and professionally. Through these experiences and involvement, I believe that I have a good understanding of the NIRSA Member Network and how it functions. This understanding and experience will help me enhance the understanding and experience of other members.
As a Student Leader within NIRSA, you have the opportunity to leave a lasting impact on the field of collegiate recreation. With a focus on Student Member Recruitment & Retention, and Student Development what skills, talents, and perspectives would you bring to the Student Leadership Team?
I have been fortunate enough to have a lot of experience in the field of collegiate recreation in just a short 4+ years. I have gained experience working in intramurals/club sports, facilities, and youth and family programming, through my time spent time at three separate institutions. During my undergraduate career I worked at the University of Oregon, spent a summer at UCLA serving as one of the completive sports interns, and I am currently in the first semester of my graduate assistantship here at Central Michigan University. I have benefited from connecting with fantastic individuals, both student employees and professional staff. I believe that my ability to connect with people through my servant leader mentality, my passion for teaching and mentoring students, and my ability to bring a positive attitude into almost any situation are reasons why I love being involved in the association. I have a curiosity and excitement for learning that I am able to share with the other students that I surround myself with. This position provides another excellent opportunity for my personal and professional growth, but more importantly, this position will provide me an opportunity to connect with students throughout Region III. Interacting with the student employees here at CMU is by far my favorite part of my graduate assistantship, and the idea of being able to have similar interactions with students throughout the region is intriguing and motivates me to work as hard as I can to both lead and serve them.