The End of This Story, The Beginning of the Next…


Dr. Evie Oregon and Dr. Brad Stinnett

The third annual Sport Facility Symposium has wrapped, and everyone is now safe at home unpacking and making excuses to delay laundry another day.  You have all seen the facilities and read about the learning and fun that was had, but what you did not see was the amount of preparation that went into making this year’s trip yet another success.  Huge shout out to our program leaders, Dr. Evie Oregon and Dr. Brad Stinnett for taking the time to make sure that our students have one of the most unique learning experiences with which a college student can experience.  Both have been making connections, setting up the tours and making sure that things run as flawless as humanly possible for over 8 months now.  Without their dedication to providing our undergraduates in Sport Management and graduates in the Master of Science in Recreation and Sport Administration with a one of a kind learning environment for three years running, this blog, the photos and the stories that the students recall year after year would not have been possible.

We also need to send our extreme gratitude to the tour facilitators for taking their time to not only give us a glimpse into their jobs and work environments, but for also answering our unending questions!  You guys were amazing!!

The 2017 Sport Facility Symposium Study Away will be in Kansas City!!  More info will be posted in the coming months, so check back with us.  Until, enjoy your summer!


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An Arm’s Race (UNC Charlotte)-Student Reflection

Ci13KlLWUAEw6JnToday we had the honor of going to the newest Group of 5 member in FBS, the UNC-Charlotte 49ers. Previously an FCS and Atlantic 10 conference member, the 49ers have come a long way in the past five years. Athletic Director Judy Rose has spearheaded the charge and most notably arranged the UNCC jump into Division I football. She was the President of NACDA in 2003-2004 and has been a catalyst for the school’s renovations and expansions. Unfortunately, we did not get a chance to meet her, but we did get to see a lot of the work that she has put in regarding new facilities.

My Key Takeaways

Some key things that stood out to me was a lack of storage, builders not executing and clustering multiple weight rooms. These all have a similar theme I would say. I think it comes down to your identity. I didn’t really get a feel of what the school was trying to portray on the visit and because of that, there was some confusion.

  • Lack of Storage

When we asked the Director of Athletic Facilities and Event Operations, Nic Ryan, if there was one thing he could wish for regarding the football facility, he said storage. There was a limited amount of space for a variety of things. The thing that caught my eye was that they still had their shoulder pads on top of their lockers (which made the locker room stink) and spring ball finished up weeks ago! If I was a recruit on a visit or even a donor coming by for a tour, it would have turned me off. Every other football locker room we went to this week (UNC and Duke) had it smelling great and their pads locked away for fall camp. The little things matter and I was surprised that they don’t have the attention to detail on that situation.

  • Builders not executing

There were three examples of this today when our tour guides explained a problem concerning when a facility was being built and the repercussions because of it. The first issue was the rec and sport turf field that is used for intramurals and leisure has constant problems with the turf. The company that installed the turf did a below average job. They didn’t properly lay down the turf as a far gluing, they cut it diagonally and they only put three drain pipes underneath the field. As the saying goes, you reap what you sow, and the facilities department for campus rec has had numerous issues with the turf ever since. The company has to keep coming out to fix the issues and it all could have been resolved if the company installed it in a professional and class act manner the first time.

There were two other examples of this. One was when we went into the basketball arena (Halton Arena) and our tour guide talked about how when the company first built the roof, there was leakage which obviously had to be fixed. Then our other tour guide showed us the athletic training room at the football complex (Judy Rose Football Center) and they had a couple buckets catching water which was coming down from the ceiling.

To wrap this point up, it saddens me that the companies that came in and built these facilities and installed the turf, couldn’t have done a better job. They didn’t execute quite frankly and because of this, the 49ers have to reap the problems. It’s unfortunate but it was definitely a theme and I hope their new facility, which is a new rec center that will be built in 2019, will go a lot smoother and have no hiccups.

  • The Cluster of Weight Rooms

Most universities at the Division I level have two to three weight rooms. They have a student-athlete weight room, a fitness center for students and for intramural participants, and a few schools have a weight room just designated for the football team. At the University of North Carolina- Charlotte, they have four weight rooms and by 2019, they will have an astounding five. It seems a little over the top to have that much and with the new rec center being built in a few years, it makes you scratch your head a little bit. There is not a lot of efficiency with having four small weight rooms right now. As many of my classmates discussed today, they should just have two really big weight rooms. One would be for the students and the other for the student-athletes. This random cluster of weight rooms is inefficient and could be put to better use- especially with a new fitness center coming around the corner.

–Student Reflection, Lance Dozier, Master of Science in Recreation and Sport Administration

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Not Even the Rain Could Hide UNC Charlotte’s Beautiful Campus-Student Reflection

Ci1eTopXAAAGA6jComing into the early morning rain on day four, the Hilltoppers tackled down the 49ers campus of University of North Carolina at Charlotte. From the start of this long journey ahead of us, UNCC gave us a great home opener with the recreational facilities department. They displayed their background of everyday usage of their intramural fields that the university allows their students to use everyday Monday through Friday for a multi purpose usage. The facility director opened up about the good and bad of the property, with contracted services with a local and state construction company who was won through the states legal policy of accepting the lowest bids of providing sufficient work for this project. Learning that recreational and sport facilities are a key asset to every program, it was good to obtain information and the seriousness about facility up keeping.

As our journey continued around 10:15am, we worked our way to the 49ers campus where the Jim, who is responsible for all site supervising over all recreational facilities, talked to us about the day to day activities that are faced with having 28,000 students and a brand new $66-million-dollar recreational center was coming in the fall of 2019. In addition to that, they are a public funded entity that relies heavily on student’s tuition fees to cover maintenance fees and upgrading projects to enhance the usage of these facilities growing. With being inside Conference USA, the 49ers first sports property we saw was the women’s softball field who has had decent success, but you can tell the relevance of the program money is toward field features, with renovating the grass and building upgrades. When we took a look into non major sports programs, their main focus from a university standpoint, facilities like tennis where labeled as “Little Wimbledon” had very luxurious seating and upgraded feature, which the chancellor of the university enough and has great competition success.

Ci03fi2WEAAXLuVOur mid day adventure covered their very Haldton Arena was very huge, with its multi purpose spacing with recreational usages as well. It seats over 9,000 people and has future renovating happening right now, with brand new scoreboard coming with a cost of million dollars. From walking around their campus every detailed item, had a gold minor feel and very green. Overall this experience has entitled great practices of breaking into industry with professional advice and learning that Charlotte has a campus who is growing and has great things coming there way.

–Student Reflection, Terren Johnson, Undergraduate in Sport Management

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The Hilltoppers take on Charlotte: UNIVERSITY OF NORTH CAROLINA CHARLOTTE-Student Reflection

Ci1eT4pXIAA0TvvUniversity of North Carolina Charlotte is definitely a site to see, built back in 1946 the university has definitely come along way. With 28,000 students enrolled at the University it is definitely on the come up. As we toured the facility we learned a lot about UNCC as a whole, and I must say it was a very interesting tour seeing how the athletics is a part of C-USA. UNCC has number of outdoor and indoor recreation facilities. The Belk Gym was very and spacious building here was the home of their Kinesiology building in here they also have had a work out center, a cycling center, a group fitness center, and many more recreational activities. They have about 2900 students who come to the Belk Gym and actually take advantage of the facility. On top of that these students have to pay student fees of about $1.00 to use the facility. UNCC is always looking for innovative ways to continue to update the facility. In fact, in UNCC plans on opening up their newest recreational center by 2019. The newest rec facility will include an indoor outdoor pool, along with outside volleyball, and basketball court. The new rec facility will definitely be loved by their students; in fact, it is even a great promotional tactic for the University itself. We were also able to tour other facilities, such as their arena and the football facility, as well, as track and field, and the softball, and soccer field. The brand new football facility was probably one of my favorite parts of the tour, because the facility is still fairly new. UNCC team came to the university about 4 years ago, and it is something that the students demanded. Since the football team has come to UNCC the amount of student fees to increase, but since tuition is roughly about 4 to 6,000 dollars a semester it is not too bad. UNCC is definitely on the up rise, with a lot of opportunities to grow in sports. The experience was nice at UNCC and there was definitely a lot to learn.

–Student Reflection, Laysha Brown, Master of Science in Recreation and Sport Administration

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Duke City–A Student Reflection

CixCiWuVEAAcPEBA University of 14,000 plus combined professional and undergraduate student’s; packs a massive punch in terms of academic success and student satisfaction ranking #8 in USNews Top colleges/Universities. In addition, Duke posted a 97% student satisfaction rating on campus which is an incredible statistic which showed true on the university grounds today. A full rock climbing wall, a fitness area with a full cardio floor plan, 3 multi-purpose hardwood baseball courts, 3 all blue newly renovated tennis courts, and weight room and lets not talk about the intermural fields!

All though the campus collectively is under major renovation and expansion Duke University’s campus was quite impressive. The brand new football facility with scoreboard, tower with all newly features that it will employ and seating construction provided a small feel, big venue experience. It was also neat to see the indoor facility for the football team; this facility is so important for student athlete development. The motivational quotes and works displayed on lockers, weight rooms and essentially all over the facilities themselves provides a (all in) environment. Last but not least Cameron stadium was as advertised; simple, yet elegant, plain, yet prestige. Coach K Court was small but was rich was some much energy you could feel it even when no one was on the court.

IMG_1894It was a very humbling experience from the facilities themselves to all the great guest speakers we had Kelsey, Germy, Kevin, Ryan, Nina, and WKU alum TQ. They provided us with amazing insight to their own individual roles and their efforts contribution to the overall mission.

Duke is a phenomenal example of mission of an established culture among the student body campus wide. Soon as you step on campus you see the beautiful “Duke Rock” in all university facilities adding an aesthetic touch with the rich history of the school.

–Student Reflection, Anton Calvin, Master of Science in Recreation and Sport Administration

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