Ithaca College’s Department of Recreation and Leisure Studies was named “Best of the Best” at the 2018 National Recreation and Parks Association Conference in Indianapolis, Indiana. Christopher Klinger, an assistant professor in the department, attended the conference, which took place Sept. 25-27.
Klinger said he hopes this national recognition will bring more awareness to the department, and that the award is a testament to its hard work. “For the department, I think being recognized at the national level for all the hard work we put in to make a quality program — it just personally feels really good,” he said.
Programs from three other institutions were also named “Best of the Best”: California Polytechnic State University, Eastern Carolina University and Western Washington University Recreation Program.
Along with winning the “Best of the Best” award, the two majors in the department were accredited by the Council on Accreditation of Parks, Recreation, Tourism and Related Professions. The therapeutic recreation program was granted reaccreditation, while the outdoor adventure leadership program received accreditation for the first time.
Klinger said that the council also gave the department multiple commendations, including providing students with unique learning opportunities, developing exceptional on and off-campus learning labs to enhance curricular needs, and having faculty demonstrate a solid understanding of student learning outcomes.