With no acting director, chaos reigned in the Intramurals and Club Sports program for the first month of the semester: Club teams were unable to schedule games and were disrupted in their everyday activities with the absence of a Club Sports director.
That all changed once the new Director of Recreation, Robert Simels, was welcomed to the College a little over a month ago. Club Sports schedules are now returning to normal as Simels settles into his new job.
“We’ve come up with a really good procedure, and things are starting to work out really well,” Simels said.
With no time to get a feel for the job, Simels started right away to get the Club Sports program back on track.
“It’s nice to jump right into it, because you don’t have time to think,” Simels said. “You can dip your toe in the pool and pull it out. I just cannonballed in. It just means you’re learning while doing instead of learning then doing.”
Simels, a graduate of the University of North Carolina, spent time as the Director of Intramurals and Recreation at Dickinson College before accepting the vacant position here at the College.
“Really, (I came here) because of the school and opportunities that it had to offer. I think there’s a big future in recreation here and developing a holistic recreational program based on fitness, intramurals and club sports,” Simels said.
Simels added that he was drawn to the school because of the opportunities that the College has to offer.
Above all, Simels wants to build a “culture of recreation” at the College — a culture where students want to be active.
“Doing some sort of physical activity, if it’s as simple as going for a hike to as competitive as playing rugby, there’s a benefit to it that will meet their academic goals as well as the mission of the school,” Simels said.
Overall, Simels’s goal is to build every program, from the Physical Enhancement Center to intramural sports, to be the best they can be for the students’ use.
“My favorite part of the job is interacting with students, learning what students want,” he said. “I think the students here are great. They have a lot of great ideas about what they want to see, and hopefully we can get some good things going.”