A day in the life
My words of advice to current, future and graduate students of the Recreation Management program are: No dream or idea is too big; actually the bigger the better!
Kuda talks about fifth year
Wow, what can't I say about a day in the life of a Recreation and Management student! The last five years have been such an amazing rollercoaster ride, and I say rollercoaster because there are ups, downs, swirls, and twirls, but I wouldn’t have it any other way.
As an international student from Zimbabwe, I didn’t know what to expect when I arrived at Dalhousie, but I quickly realized that this was going to be my home for the next five years and I had to make my home comfortable. I became involved on campus and explored my passions through societies, a part-time job, and volunteering. Most importantly I focused on the reason I was at Dalhousie, my education. Initially, I had trouble settling into the Recreation Management program as it seemed highly geared towards sports, but that mind-set quickly changed after talking to the amazing and supportive advisors and faculty in the School of Health and Human Performance. I realized that, with these two degrees, my profession could be whatever I want it to be and I could tailor my classroom experiences towards researching my areas of interest, which are tourism and accessibility. Five years later, I am completing my honours research project, have gone on an exchange program to the University of Bath in England, received The Slaight Family Foundation Scholarship for my last two years at Dalhousie and am getting ready to go for my internship. I am excited to graduate with my two degrees and take the world by storm!
The dual degree program definitely equips students with the essential skills they need for success in the professional world, from leadership and management skills, teamwork, technical business skills, such as accounting and financial analysis, to community engagement mechanisms and program planning. The Recreation degree also has an honours option which I decided to do as I enjoy researching areas that I am passionate about, and in the case of my honours topic those areas are tourism and accessibility. The honours project has developed my ability to work independently and has sharpened my critical thinking and time management skills, which are advantageous traits that will be useful and relevant to my professional life. The program also has an internship component which gives students a chance to apply everything that they have been learning in the classroom. Students have the opportunity to work at an organization of their choice locally, nationally or internationally.
One of my future goals is to start a recreational facility in Zimbabwe for children with and without disabilities that promotes accessibility and inclusion, and works towards erasing dominant discourses and stereotypes about disability in Zimbabwe. I thought of this idea after taking a course in the Recreation and Management program titled ‘Leisure and Individuals with Disabilities’, which made me analyse the state of disability in Zimbabwe and how best I could help change things.
My words of advice to current, future and graduate students of the Recreation Management program are: No dream or idea is too big; actually the bigger the better! Don’t give up on something you want to do and are passionate about, regardless of what anyone says, and don’t be afraid to work hard and to work smart!