NIRSA Championship Series Volunteerism: The Perceived Impact on Professional Development

Jacob K. Tingle, Randall J. Griffiths, Dan Hazlett, April Flint
  • Recreational Sports Journal, April 2018, Human Kinetics
  • DOI: 10.1123/rsj.2017-0010

Volunteering at NIRSA Championship Series Events Provides Professional Development Opportunities

What is it about?

This study explored the perceived impact of volunteering on one's professional development. The results indicate that some professional growth, in key areas such as public speaking and teaching ability, occurs as a result of the volunteer experience. There are other key areas, such as listening and the development of positive leadership styles, that need to be explored more fully.

Why is it important?

Universities spend thousands of dollars for their students and professional staff to attend NIRSA Championship Series events. This study helps justify those expenditures, in that through the volunteer experience, staff members return to their home campus better prepared and more capable of doing their jobs. In some ways, volunteering at these events can be considered analogous to attending an professional conference. The study also highlights the value of experiential learning.


Jacob Tingle (Author)
Trinity University

This study provides an important step in understanding the value of NIRSA Championship Series events and, most importantly, provides an important call to action for how the association can be more intentional in designing education opportunities associated with the volunteer experiences.

April Flint (Author)
Emory University

This study adds to research around sports and event volunteerism. The knowledge gained from the study provides a better understanding of why recreation professionals volunteer within the Series and, quite possibly, why they volunteer for professional organizations as a whole. The study gives reason for recreation organizations to structure volunteerism opportunities with intentionality and professional development in mind.

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The following have contributed to this page: Jacob Tingle, Dan Hazlett, and April Flint