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Campus Recreation

Volume 18, Issue 1

Think Purple! Think Campus Rec! Think Western!


As I reflect on this past year, my pride in the team we have become here in Campus Recreation comes to the forefront. Each person continually impresses me with their spirit, creativity, and passion to excel, learn, and lead! Providing meaningful and quality experiences to our students and community continues to be our priority. Similar to many universities these days, challenges include enrollment and funding. I am very proud that our team understands the significance of these issues and they continually seek to be a part of the solution. From teaching, mentoring, and volunteering to spearheading new community-centered events, I have enjoyed the energy and enthusiasm that has shined through in our many department-wide efforts. Yes, there are ebbs and flows and ups and downs, but overall, everyone has been there for each other when we have needed it. Campus Recreation plays a major role in supporting the University’s primary initiative of recruitment and retention. Aside from the sports and open recreation we are all familiar with, these are just a few of the efforts we contribute toward these goals: ▷▷We are proud to host the opening session of the six Discover Western programs. We provide approximately 25 students, GAs and staff for each event to meet families and give tours of our facility. ▷▷Seven Campus Recreation Staff mentored first year students in the Building Connections program. ▷▷Seven professional staff members taught University 100 classes in 2013, a required class for all first-year students, to assist in successful transition to the University. ▷▷In the fall, we co-hosted Leatherneck Fun Day with Athletics targeted at families. ▷▷We organized a community effort for the central Illinois tornado relief, the Nearly Naked Mile! ▷▷This year not only did we host the evening SOAR (summer orientation) entertainment, but we had

Spring 2014

additional student leaders there to intentionally engage students and provide another positive experience here at Western. ▷▷We also hosted special departmental recruitment efforts, such as Experience Western, tours and assisted with the Western Express recruitment effort of the Admissions Office. ▷▷Student Employment – 2013 ▷▷ Campus Recreation – 52,421 hours with 88 employees ▷▷ Harry Mussatto Golf Course – 4,573 with 19 employees I am blessed to work with such fine professionals, graduate assistants, and students. They are simply the best! WIU Campus Recreation strives to be a leader among institutions with our positive image of the caring and creative nature of the entire student and professional staff. We collectively understand our role is to be of service to our community. Thank you for being a part of this legacy! Milly MacDonell, Director Sports Management ‘00

The Fall 2013 Western Illinois University Campus Recreation staff posed for a group shot during Student Employee Training Day in August.

Stan Campbell, Associate Vice Chancellor for Student Affairs at University of Nebraska-Lincoln received the WIU Alumni Achievement Award on December 14, 2013. Campbell, a 1975 graduate, holds a Master’s Degree in Physical Education with an emphasis in Sport Management, has served as Associate Vice Chancellor for Student Affairs at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln since 2007, and as Director of Campus Recreation since 1982. Previously, he was the Assistant Vice Chancellor for Student Affairs and also served as Intramural Sports and Recreation Facilities Coordinator at Nebraska. Campbell served as the Sport Clubs Director, Assistant Intramural Sports Director and Physical Education Instructor at Western Illinois University from 1976-1979. He is a member of NIRSA: Leaders in Collegiate Recreation, where he has served as president, Region V vice president and past presidents’ representative and NASPA: Student Affairs Administrators in Higher Education. Campbell was a 2009 inductee of the National College Flag Football Hall of Fame and a 2002 recipient of NIRSA’s Honor Award. He currently serves NIRSA as vice president of the Foundation Board of Directors and chair of the Audit and Finance Committee. Campbell was instrumental in helping pass the referendum at Western for the construction of a new student recreation center, providing background material and research to develop a plan for a center. In addition, he has given back to his alma mater by providing sports management internships for WIU students at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln, and he frequently returns to campus to speak to sports management graduate classes. In his community, he serves as a member of the Goodwill Industries Board of Directors, as an elder at his church, and as a member of the Great Plains Trails Network.

Dr. John Colgate, Director of Campus Recreation (196493), Janet Wigglesworth, Ph.D. Department of Kinesiology Chair & Professor, Stan Campbell, Associate Vice Chancellor for Student Affairs at University of Nebraska-Lincoln, Judy Yeast, Associate Director of Campus Recreation.


Western Illinois University

JT Timmons (SM ‘02) was the featured speaker at Western on Tuesday, April 1, as part of our National Recreational Sports and Fitness Day. The title of his presentation was “The Skill Set Needed for the 21st Century”. JT received his master’s degree in Sport Management from Western Illinois University in May, 2002 and was a graduate assistant in facilities. He is currently the Director of Recreational Services for the University of Iowa with a budget of $14.7 million and over 600 professional, support and student staff. Current graduate assistant, Sara Frederick, received a grant from the Visiting Lectures Series for his honorarium.

Curt McReynolds (BS ‘02, MS ‘04), Executive Director of the Boys & Girls Clubs of Dundee Township, Carpentersville, IL, was on campus March 25 to speak to the Campus Recreation

graduate assistants. His presentation was titled, “Success and Your Future.” Curt talked about their current experiences and their future careers. Recreation Sports Professional Society (RSPS) president, Stephen Dowhan (pictured above) presented a check to Curt for $50.00 to help disadvantaged children attend a soccer event this summer.

Curt attended the 2004 Grad Appreciation Gathering at the WIU Alumni House. Campus Recreation

The 2nd Annual Fallen Soldiers 5K had 457 runners/ walkers this fall, up from 310 in 2012. We raised over $14,000 for the Veteran’s Scholarship Fund. Save the date for the 3rd Annual Fallen Soldiers 5k Run/Walk on Saturday, October 18, 2014, at 9:00 a.m.

We were all Freezin’ for a Reason in Macomb, Illinois on February 8! Our first Nearly Naked Mile was a success with more than 140 registered runners, 38 volunteers and over $2500 raised to benefit those affected by the November 2013 Central Illinois Tornadoes. Sponsors included Campus Recreation, Century 21: Lorraine Epperson, Marcia Hall, Steve Silberer, Marilyn Pruitt, Nancy Badord, Paula Knight, Cambridge Property Group, University Bookstore, Refreshment Services - Pepsi, Quick Print & Signs, Blades, Old Dairy, Cathy Early – State Farm Insurance, Sports Corner, No Place Like Home, U-Tech Computer Store, and Engraving by Lin. Western Connection

Big Pink Volleyball has raised $102,248.12 since April 2002 and 10,842 students and employees have participated in this event.

The Goalball Tournament was a big success this spring. Dr. Cindy Piletic (BS ‘84, KIN ‘86) with her Adaptive Physical Education class and Rachel Smith RPTA 251 class were very supportive of this event.

Spring 2014


Emily Brink M.S., Kinesiology Emily graduated from Western Illinois University with a B.S. in Dietetics. She hopes to continue in the Dietetics field as a Registered Dietitian. She would like to work in the campus recreation setting or with Division I athletes on improving their performance through nutrition. As a former athlete from WIU, she knows just how important the aspect of nutrition is alongside training for competition. She is passionate about golf, cooking and anything sports related. Originally from Quincy, Illinois, Emily would like to live somewhere warm where she can play golf all year around. Emily would like to thank everybody who has helped her in the last two years to get to this point. They have helped her both personally and professionally to accomplish her goals. “I know I would not be able to receive my graduate degree without the help of my coaches, professors, advisors and supervisors.” Key skills: Hard-working, great time-management skills, detail-oriented, and organized Steve Dowhan M.S., Sport Management stephen.dowhan@ (248) 736-3800 Steve came to Western Illinois University from Loyola University Chicago, where he earned his B.B.A. in Sport Management. He is seeking a position in competitive sports or facility management within campus recreation. 4

Western Illinois University

(Steve Dowhan) He is passionate about officiating, student development, and engaging students in the larger campus community. As an Intramural Sports Graduate Assistant and Facility Management Intern, he has seen firsthand the friendships and engagement that are fostered from intramural participation and facility use. According to Steve, “I truly believe that the recreation center is one of the most vital buildings on campus in regard to student experience. I want to continue to be involved in helping students have the best college experience possible.” Hailing from Farmington Hills, MI, Steve is looking forward to his next opportunity, wherever that may be. “I’ve lived in Michigan, Illinois, and Colorado already, so I wouldn’t mind going somewhere the Polar Vortex can’t find me.” NOTE: Steve did is undergraduate internship with John Howard (BS ‘04, MS ‘05) at the Colorado School of Mines. Key skills: Customer Service, Adaptability, Attention to Detail, Collaboration, Student Development Breanna Jewell M.S., Recreation, Park and Tourism Administration (765) 623-1966 Bre received her bachelor’s from Indiana State University in Criminal Justice and Recreation Youth Leadership. Bre is the current Aquatics and Outdoor Pursuit Graduate Assistant. She is seeking a position as an Aquatics director in the campus recreation community. Bre is passionate about yoga and traveling during her free time. Bre says that “WIU has really helped me grow as an individual and I learned more about myself in the past year than I have in my entire life.” Her plans include moving somewhere beautiful and during her free time she would like to open her own yoga studio. Originally from Pendleton, Indiana Bre admits that her dream location after graduation would be West Virginia. Key Skills: Organized, hardworking problem solving, and works well with other people. Campus Recreation

Nathan Pittman M.S., Kinesiology (Physiology and Strength and Conditioning) (217) 248-7574 Nathan received a B.S. in Exercise Science from Western Illinois University. He is a passionate individual with a truly “curious” outlook on life; he maintains this curiosity in his efforts of learning about the human body and what it can achieve. He has managed to accumulate a “dense” experience during the two years of graduate school by working within the college community as well as taking on responsibilities at McDonough District Hospital. He shares and utilizes his knowledge of exercise programming for diseased patients with the Rec Center community. Nathan says his experience at the Rec Center has “equipped me with the ability to effectively communicate to large groups of people.” Nathan has taught group fitness classes allowing him to convey his knowledge in a way that people with varying comprehensions can effectively understand. “I appreciate the efforts of the Kinesiology Department to prepare their students for the wide array of career paths available in this line of work. I have managed to accumulate a large backing from individuals I have worked with both through Campus Recreation and the Kinesiology Department. With their support, I plan on finding a career that will allow me to utilize my skills and abilities to positively impact a community through the use to educational and empowering techniques. Originally from Rushville, IL, Nathan plans on contributing to the body of research specifically dealing with resistance training for the elderly. “To be keen in both body and mind, we must ALL take care of ourselves!”

Ryan Tubbs M.S., Kinesiology (770) 815-2817 Ryan received his Bachelor’s in Psychology from Valdosta State University. A Graduate Assistant for Intramural Sports, he is seeking a position in Intramural or Club Sports in the Campus Recreation field. Ryan is passionate about Student Development and believes that Intramural Sports and Campus Recreation provide students the opportunity to develop as young professionals. He is also very passionate about officiating and truly believes that valuable lessons can be learned from serving as an official. From being very confused while officiating his first intramural basketball game over five years ago to officiating varsity basketball this past year, he has come a long way and wants to continue to develop as an official. “Working for Campus Recreation on a daily basis has shown me just how much of a difference you can make in people’s lives. The WIU Campus Recreation department has taught me a great deal about the field and has helped me continue to become the professional that I aspire to be. I’m truly looking forward to my next opportunity within Campus Recreation.” NOTE: This past fall Ryan officiated at the NIRSA Region V Flag Football Tournament hosted at the University of Nebraska─Lincoln. Key skills: Student Employee Leadership, Customer Service, Versatility, Interpersonal Communication, Event Coordination

Key Skills: “Packaging” advice and knowledge in a way that allows for assimilation by any individual” passionate, dedicated, and enjoyable to be around.

Western Connection

Spring 2014


Samantha Wallace M.S., Sport Management (480) 459-1658 Sam earned her B.A. in English Literature from Arizona State University. She would love to stay in Campus Recreation and is seeking a position in Competitive Sports and/or Youth Programming. Despite originally being raised in the dry heat and urban sprawl of the Phoenix area, Sam has no qualms about living in a big city versus a small town. She has no issue with experiencing other climates after braving the erratic weather of Illinois over the last year and a half. Sam is passionate about having officials learn skills that will assist them in whatever career path they choose. She also loves working with kids to ensure they have memorable summer camp experiences. She loves watching sports, seeing movies and playing trivia games. She says her time at WIU "has been so rewarding, which can be attributed to the amazing people I have had the pleasure of meeting in my time here. The opportunities I was afforded to learn and grow are things I will always be grateful for." Key skills: Communication & leadership in addition to being a personable, supportive, passionate person and a team player Kevin Wilson M.S., Recreation, Park & Tourism Administration (719) 359-2671 Kevin received a B.S. in Sport Management from the University of Colorado at Colorado Springs. He is passionate about facilitating student development 6

Western Illinois University

(Kevin Wilson) opportunities personally and professionally. His love for teaching and human development has led him to pursue a Ph.D. upon graduation from WIU. Kevin is grateful for the dedication and concerted effort the professional staff gives to graduate assistants in preparing them for their future endeavors. The training and education provided by the staff transcends the work environment, and it cultivates complete students who are both professionally prepared and civically engaged. Kevin is currently writing his thesis, “Polychronicity with Media in Higher Education: Media Multitasking, Academic Performance & Leisure Behavior,� which focuses on how student preference to multitask with digital media affects academic and recreational pursuits. His research will be presented at the RPTA Professional Development Conference, and he hopes it will be a springboard for dissertation work. His main reason for focusing on this topic is to contribute valuable research to the recreation field regarding the impact of excessive media use and its role in limiting student initiative to pursue recreational activities. Originally from Colorado Springs, CO, Kevin seeks to become a tenured faculty member at a prestigious research institution where he can teach and conduct research in the recreation field as an academic. He aims to inform younger generations about the value of leisure and recreation in a fast-paced, businessoriented society. Key skills: Critical thinker, able to work with diverse groups of people, creative, and a knack for building personal relationships with students, colleagues, and staff. Our NEWEST feature! AquaClimb Poolside Climbing Wall Climb is almost 16 feet above the water! Enjoy the plunge into the deep end of the pool! MILE HIGH CLUB: Scale the AquaClimb 330 times and you will have climbed a total of ONE MILE!

Campus Recreation

Kevin Palermo (BS ‘12) Facility Management Graduate Assistant Athletic Facilities Manager Facilities Services University of Chicago Ratner Athletic Center I currently oversee two indoor athletic and recreational facilities, a turf football/soccer field, a natural grass field for baseball, softball and soccer, eight tennis courts, a full-sized Olympic pool, and a 400-meter track. I also oversee a number of facilities projects and upgrades for the department as well. The new job is going great so far. The transition from Macomb to Chicago has been exciting. The city is awesome, with tons of fun things to do, but sadly no Chicks on the Square. WIU is truly a special place for me. I had the rare opportunity to be an undergrad student, a graduate student, an athlete, and a graduate assistant in my time there; each of which helped me grow in a different way. I truly miss the University, the town, and especially the people. Once a Leatherneck, Always a Leatherneck! Nick Waterman (BS ‘12) Marketing Graduate Assistant Director of Community Relations (Sales) at Burlington Bees (319) 850-6116 I am currently running the Burlington Bees’ Buzz's Reading Club, which includes traveling to schools in the southeast Iowa and western Illinois communities, discussing the importance of reading and implementing the reading program into schools. This program gives students opportunities to earn prizes for their reading achievements. This year I have 30 schools and more than 7,500 students participating in the program! Western Connection

(Nick Waterman) When the baseball season starts, I will be doing the on-field promotions, as well as making sure that the Bees are reaching out to the community as much as possible through player and mascot appearances. I'm very excited for the season to get underway because that will be the way we measure the effectiveness of our community outreach. Garrett Kepner 2013-14 Fitness Services Graduate Assistant This summer, I am finishing coursework and volunteering in the Western Illinois Athletics Department with Drew Kramer, Director of Strength and Conditioning. In the fall, I will be either completing a fitness related internship or taking a job. I will also return to Western to defend my Thesis at some point.

Tiara Cash, Facility GA and granddaughter of the late Lee Calhoun, is pictured above with her family, who were in Macomb to celebrate the 25th running of the Lee Calhoun Invitational Track Meet. Spring 2014


Dominic Ackerman (SM ‘13) is the Club Sport Coordinator for 30 club teams at San Jose State University, San Jose, CA.

Congratulations to Tena Wurdeman Bennett (SM ‘00) who was named the Director of the Southern Illinois University Carbondale Student Center.

Adam Albertsen (SM ‘10) is engaged to Allison Smith. Adam is the tennis coach at Adrian College, Adrian, MI.

Kelley Kenady (BS ‘03, KIN ‘05), our Director of Fitness Services, participated in the making of a KettleWorx Group Training video last January. The video production has been completed and is now available for sale.

Nicole (Kroot) Attaway (SM ‘09) and her husband Dan, are the proud parents of Kaden John Attaway, born on September 1, 2013. Ben Blodgett (SM ‘13) is the Assistant Manager for Building Operations at the University of Massachusetts in Amherst, MA. Ross Bjork (SM ‘96) is the Director of Intercollegiate Athletics at The University of Mississippi. Katie Carls (SM ‘08) is the Director of Campus Events at Illinois College in Jacksonville, IL. Congratulations to Holly (Sterner) Crowley (SM ‘09) and her husband, Brian, on the birth of their son, Brayden Andrew Crowley, on September 28, 2013. Congratulations to Caitlin Davis (RPTA ’11) and Michael Justice, who were engaged December 25, 2013. Caitlin serves as Conference Coordinator for Western Illinois University. Chris Davis (SM ‘01) is the director of the new David J. Prior Convocation Center at University of Virginia - Wise. Congratulations to Grant Fleetwood (RPTA ‘11, ‘13) and Heather Raschke (‘12) on their engagement on November 23! Grant was a former graduate assistant at Campus Recreation. Congratulations to Kyla Keefauver (BS ‘11, SM ‘13) and Ryan Charter (‘11) who were married October 5, 2013. Kyla is working for the F.B.I. in Springfield, Illinois. Congratulations to Kari Leigh Osborne (SM ‘09) and Jonathan Albarado on their recent engagement. Kari Leigh is the Assistant Director of Intramurals and Sport Clubs at Texas A & M Commerce. They will be married on December 13, 2014. Amy McCallister (BS ‘99, MS ‘01) is the Administrator for the Hancock County Health Department in Carthage, IL.


Western Illinois University

Lauren (Carrier) McKinnis (SM ‘ 08) is the Waste Reduction & Recycling Outreach Coordinator at North Carolina State University, Durham, North Carolina. Kristin Obert (BS ‘11, KIN ‘ 13) is the Assistant Director of Fitness and Wellness at the University of Illinois Springfield. She is part of the staff at UIS, which includes WIU alumni, Matt Panich (SM ‘09), Jay Swenson (SM ‘11), and Chuck Thomas (BS ‘12, RPTA ‘13). Katie Thomas (SM ‘12) is the Recreational Sports Specialist for the Salvation Army at the Ray and Joan Kroc Center Corps Community Center in Quincy, IL. Congratulations to Nick White (RPTA ‘09) and Lizzy Callaway, who are the proud parents of Estella Nicolette White, born March 13, 2014. This could be YOU! Please update us on what your currently doing and any achievements you have received at or go to our “Contact Us” page at

Campus Recreation is hosting its 1st Annual Campus Recreation Alumni Golf Outing on Saturday, July 12, at the WIU Harry Mussatto Golf Course. The scramble format costs $200.00 per foursome and includes 18 holes, a cart, and lunch. Play begins at 11:00 am. You can find a registration form online at or

Campus Recreation

2007 WIU Alumnus Philip Kaminski (‘07) presents his donation for Men’s Ultimate Frisbee and Women’s Ultimate Frisbee sport clubs to Milly MacDonell (SM ‘00), Director of Campus Recreation.

Congratulations to former WIU Campus Rec Graduate Assistant Scott Vandermoon (SM ’06) on his IIRSA Service Award presented by the 2013 recipient, Kevin Linker. The Service Award is the highest honor awarded by our state association. It recognizes a member for consistent outstanding service and/or achievements in the profession.

Western Connection

Director of Facility Management & Sport Clubs, Nick Knowles (‘02, RPTA ‘07) and Peoria Park District Sports Supervisor, Matt Suellentrop (SM ‘07). Nick & Matt were Graduate Assistants at Campus Recreation together in 2006-07.

Dr. Michael Bradley, (RPTA ‘03) received the 2013 Oklahoma State University College of Education Rising Star Award. Also, he was recently named the G.O.L.D. Graduate of the Last Decade Award Winner for 2014 by RPTA. Mike is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Recreation and Park Administration at Eastern Kuntuchky University. Reach him at or on Twitter at @ RecKnowledge. Spring 2014


Congratulations to Pat McGrath (SM ‘11), Director of Aquatics and Outdoor Pursuits, for receiving the Division of Student Services 2013 Administrative Employee of the year! Pat is pictured above with the Vice President of Student Services, Gary Biller.

You are invited to attend Western Illinois University Western Connection Thursday, April 24 6:30-8:30 pm Dave & Busters 540 Opry Mills Drive, Nashville

Business Manager, Julie Terstriep (BA ‘88, RPTA ‘13), completed her Master’s Degree in RPTA in December 2013. Congratulations to Connie Van Dyke, who received the Division of Student Services Employee of the Month for February. Associate Director, Judy Yeast (SM ‘81), and her husband, Steve, are looking forward to welcoming a grandbaby into their lives. Their daughter, Ashley, and her husband, Mitch Tanney are expecting in early June. Graphic Designer Associate, Jody Zscheck (BA ‘04, BS ‘13), completed her Bachelor’s Degree in Graphic Communication in December 2013. We have had a blog page for two years now and hope you will check it out. Graduate Assistant, Cody Koeppen, is writing posts on a regular basis. We would like to extend an invitation to our alumni to send us a post. Or if you are already blogging, let us know so we can follow you, too!


Western Illinois University

Fall 2013 Graduate Assistants (Left/right) Austin Hetzer, Kevin Palermo, Breanna Jewell, Ryan Tubbs, Tiara Cash, Sara Frederick, Nick Waterman, Nick Maentanis, Emily Sparks, Steve Dowhan, Samantha Wallace, Garrett Kepner, and Kevin Wilson. Emily Brink is not pictured.

Code Red drills have been implemented to increase the Aquatics staff’s preparation for emergencies. During one shift each month, a lifeguard will randomly face a mock emergency scenario to test their skills and readiness. These drills have helped the lifeguards to feel more prepared for emergencies that might occur and have increased the cooperation between Facilities and Aquatics in risk management.

Campus Recreation

Western Connection Alumni Newsletter, Spring 2014  

Western Illinois University Campus Recreation Western Connection Alumni Newsletter, Spring 2014, Vol. 18

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