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Intramural Sports to be Replaced by Campus Events

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Due to lack of space and growing concern over the department’s organizational structure, Dickinson’s recreational department has been replaced with the Campus Recreation Programming Board, replacing intramural sports with campus wide recreational events.

Sean Ryan explains that since he is Dickinson’s fourth associate director of fraternity life and experiential leadership in the last four years, the recreational department has not seen a lot of structure or guidance in the past. Coming into the fall 2017 semester, he has tried to restructure the entire department. These changes include creating a new mission statement, determining department values, adding a diversity statement, setting minimum expectations and requirements for all staff members and having frequent staff meetings.

One of the department’s biggest changes has been getting rid of its traditional Intramural Sports program. Instead, according to Liza Tomczuk ’18, sports club council coordinator, the new Campus Recreation Programming Board “will organize recreational events open to all members of the Dickinson community, such as dodgeball and basketball tournaments, bubble-ball, and other fun recreational activities.”

“There really was no clear direction or vision for the department,” explains Tomczuk. “These changes were made in order to better define the mission of the department, which is to enhance transformational learning and the quality of life for the “A lot of small liberal arts colleges in the northeast are actually moving away from the traditional intramural leagues,” says Ryan. Instead, the program will be “focusing more on the day tournaments and just different rec program opportunities where students can still come out and play dodgeball or basketball.”

Ryan comments that the decision also came as a result of space. “There’s not a whole lot of space on campus to begin with… especially in the winter semesters,” he observes. “There are some times where, in February now, the gym is busy from 4:30 to 11:00 at night, and that’s just for varsity sports.”

The student body has also played a role in this decision. “Student feedback was one of the factors that led to these structural changes,” says Tomczuk.

“We talked about last semester with our intramural supervisors, we talked about it with our referees, we talked about it with just our students in club sports and a lot of them agreed that there needs to be some type of change,” says Ryan.

Additionally, the recreational department has hired at least three more students to help in the office and to develop their leadership potential. Tomczuk explains that people in the new positions of Sports Club Council Coordinator, Social Media and Marketing Coordinator, Group Fitness/Staff Development/Health and Wellness Coordinator “will be working to organize and promote Campus Recreation programs and events.” After all, Ryan insists that “as student-centered events and student-centered programs,” Dickinson students can market the new programming board to their peers and show them that it is made for everyone.

As the semester proceeds, Ryan hopes to encourage students “to get centered on the idea of health and wellness, to get involved in it on campus [and] to [learn about] different leadership positions.” The spring semester is meant to test out the new structure of the recreational department, to see what does and does not work, and, then, to try to make changes for the upcoming fall with a more solid foundation.

The recreational department, along with its campus partners, such as the athletics and student life departments, are excited to see where the spring semester goes and to build up from there.

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Intramural Sports to be Replaced by Campus Events