Catherine Gooch

Director Clinical Education and Clinical Assistant Professor, Recreation and Leisure Studies
Phone: 607-375-6312
Office: Hill Center G49, Ithaca, NY 14850

Catherine Gooch, CTRS, MS Ed

Clinical Assistant Professor, Department of Recreation and Leisure Studies

​HSHP Pre-Health Professions Program Director

Center for Life Skills, Program Director

Faculty, School of Health Sciences and Human Performance
Specialty:  Therapeutic Recreation, Interprofessional Education, Stroke Rehabilitation, Community Partnership Programs, Student Engagement, Student Success

Phone:  (607) 375.6312  Center for Life Skills

​               (607) 274.3087  Pre-Health Professions Program Office


Office:  Pre-Health Professions Program Coordinator, G49 Hill Center

             CLS:  Longview, 2nd floor Ithaca College Program Space  


Welcome!  I am Catherine Gooch, a Clinical Assistant Professor in the Recreation and Leisure Studies Department here at Ithaca College.  In this role, I am also the Program Director of the Center for Life Skills (CLS) and also the HSHP Pre-Health Professions Program Director.  The Center for Life Skills is an interdisciplinary program consisting of physical therapy,  recreational therapy, occupational therapy, and speech-language pathology students working with individuals from the community living with traumatic brain injury (e.g.stroke).  The CLS program is a model interdisciplinary, experiential, and student centered learning opportunity and an integral part of the School of Health Sciences and Human Performance curriculum while providing a service to the community.  Since its beginning in 2000, over 1300 students have been involved in this wonderful program.  (

The HSHP Pre-Health Professions Program is designed for first and second year students interested in exploring health or human performance-related careers.  This flexible program gives students up to four semesters to strategically sample courses, meet faculty and fellow students, and learn more about themselves and their interests before applying into a specific degree program. I enjoy, along with a team of faculty advisors assist students in making decisions about courses and the best career path for them.  (

My scholarly interests include:  interprofessional education and practice (IPE/IPP), societal leisure practices, stroke rehabilitation, and the development of community partnerships for student/community engagement.

I have had the exciting opportunity to develop and implement community partnerships within the courses I teach giving the students exposure and practice in developing professional skills.  Community partnerships have included programs with the following local groups:  New York State Parks, New York State Special Olympics (Polar Plunge!), Franziska Racker Center's residential group homes, and Tompkins County Mental Health Association.  I thoroughly enjoy assisting Ithaca College students to flourish into creative, innovative, mature, and problem-solving individuals which will serve them well as they advance into internships and careers representing Ithaca College as the next remarkable professional generation!

Courses I have had the pleasure of teaching include:  Leisure Education (Clinical Approach), Administration of Therapeutic Recreation, Introduction to Therapeutic Recreation, Therapeutic Recreation Process,  all in the RLS program as well at Occupational Therapy course, Play and Leisure in the Department of Occupational Therapy.  I will also be teaching Health Sciences:  Foundations and Careers course that all Pre-Health Professions Program students take their first-year fall semester.

Please feel free to contact me for any questions regarding the CLS program or the Pre-Health Professions program.  Thank you!