Fall 2007 "At Your Leisure"

Congratulations Alums

G. T. Thompson '81 (Gthompson@SHScares.org) is Rehabilitation Services Manager at Susquehanna Health Systems in Williamsport, PA. His son, Logan, is a U.S. soldier who was wounded on November 7th when an explosion occurred just south of Baghdad; he is expected to make a full recovery! Surgery was successful, and he hopes to return to his unit after rehabilitation at a hospital in Germany. We appreciate Logan's actions and our thoughts are with the Thompson family.

Alumni Linda Bollinger ’82, Joanne Finegan ’83 (jfinegan@remed.com), Jessica Rickard ’94 (jrickard@mageerehab.org), and faculty members Tammy Buckley, Ralph Smith and Patty Kleban conducted a prototype training course on “Inclusive Recreation for Wounded Warriors” to the U.S. Army, Marines, Navy, Air Force, Department of Veterans Affairs and Office of Secretary of Defense. The course is intended for Recreation Managers working with Wounded Warriors at military installations in the U.S. and abroad. Kris D’Alessandro ’86 (kris.dalessandro@cfsc.army.mil), representing the Family, Morale, and Welfare Command (FMWRC) of the U.S. Army, was a participant in the course.

Wendy A. Owen ’85 (wendy.a.owen@lmco.com), Vice President, Strategic Communications Initiatives and Global Services at Lockheed Martin Information Systems & Global Services, lectured on November 1 in the HUB Auditorium as part of the Distinguished Alumni Speaker Series sponsored by the College of Health and Human Development Alumni Society. Wendy’s lecture was titled “The Space Program after the Shuttle Columbia Tragedy: A Story of the Human Spirit.”

J. Brad "Spider" Caldwell ’86 (jbc8@psu.edu) celebrated his 25th year as Penn State’s athletic equipment manager. Mr. Caldwell has become an integral part of the history of Penn State football and was interviewed by Lou Prato and Scott Brown for their 2006 book What It Means to be a Nittany Lion.

Dianne DeFusco ’88 (diannedefusco@yahoo.com) is Vice President of Operations with full responsibility for all Kissito Healthcare facilities nationwide.

Chris Saello ’88 (csaello@ymcabwv.org) is Vice President of Financial Development and Acting Executive Director for YMCA of the Brandywine Valley.

Mike Gardner ’96 (mgardner@riverruncc.com) is Chief Operating Officer of River Run Country Club in Davidson, NC.

Brian J. Esposito ‘97 (espo@soil-tech.com), managed the Third Annual Par for The Cure (www.parforthecure.com) Celebrity Classic at Lake Las Vegas on October 19 with proceeds funding breast cancer research.

Don Coine ’98 (dcoine@state.pa.us) is Park Manager of Greenwood Furnace State Park.

Joe Hughes PGM ’99 (jdh174@psu.edu) received the Emerging Professional Undergraduate Degree Award at the HHD Alumni Society Awards Reception and Dinner on September 28.

Stacey Brewer ’00 (sebpsu4@aol.com), former Lady Lions Basketball team member, is Assistant Principal and Athletic Director of Cowan Junior/Senior High School in Muncie, IN.

Jason Waters PGM '00 (jwaters@hopmeadowcc.net) is PGA Head Golf Professional at Hop Meadow Country Club in Simsbury, CT. He spoke to the PGM Student Society on November 7 about career advancement in private industry.

Jennifer (Lopett) Haines '01 (Lopett@hotmail.com) is a Recreation Center Director in Casper, Wyoming.

Elizabeth Helm '01 of DCNR-Bureau of State Parks and Rebecca Slick '98 of Manheim Township Parks and Recreation were recipients of The Pennsylvania Recreation and Park Society's "Excellence in Programming" Awards. Entries were judged in the following areas: innovation, efficient use of resources, community involvement, range of appeal and potential for continuity.

James Juran ’03 (jjuran@state.pa.us) is Park Manager of Little Pine State Park. Jim manages four parks: Little Pine, Upper Pine Bottom, Hyner Run, and Hyner View.

Mike Corcoran '04 (mike_corcoran@hotmail.com), Director of Operations at Penn State All Sports Museum, expressed his gratitude to faculty during an October visit, saying "I couldn't have picked a better major. The faculty and courses really prepared me for the field." He offered to conduct facility tours for RPTM classes.

Aneisha Johnson ’04 (Ajohnson@heat.com) is Account Services Manager of Season Ticket Services for the Miami Heat.

Matt Grobe ’05 (matt.grobe@nwlr.com), Recreation Manager and Miles Blundell ’04 (miles.blundell@nwlr.com), Head Golf Professional from Nemacolin Woodlands Resort visited on October 2-3 recruiting students for employment opportunities.

Dan Benzenberg '06 (dbenzenberg@golftec.com) and Tom Howard '00 (thoward@golftec.com), PGA Teaching Professionals with GolfTEC, spoke in several RPTM and recruited students for full-time and internship positions on November 13.

Dan Pisarchik ’06 (danp@PoloClub.Net) is the 1st Assistant Golf Professional at The Polo Club in Boca Raton, FL.

Michael Pius ’06 (mjp317@pga.com) is pursuing a master’s degree in Sport and Leisure Service Management at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas.

Jillian Poznick ’06 (spiotrowicz@carrduff.com) was featured in the May edition of Women’s Leadership Initiative discussing her experience running a marathon to support the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society in Nashville, TN.

Larissa Witmer ’06 (lwitmer@hotmail.com) is pursuing a master's degree in Parks, Recreation and Tourism Management at North Carolina State University. She is a research assistant on a project studying physical activity levels at summer camps.

Bobbi Jo Witmer ’07 (bjwitmer@gmail.com) is a job coach for adults with disabilities for Goodwill Industries.

Katie Clifford '07 (kclifford@stingrayshockey.com) is Ticket Sales Executive for the South Carolina Stingrays, an affiliate of the Hershey Bears. Prior to joining the Stingrays, Katie completed an internship with the Family Circle Cup Tennis Center in Charleston, SC, directed by Lisa Thomas '85.

Maggie Neil ’07 (mneil@myrtlebeachpelicans.com) is Director of Promotions for the Myrtle Beach Pelicans Baseball club.

Congratulations Students

Rob Andrejewski, Sarah Beard, and Joel Blanco joined RPTM’s graduate program in the fall along with visiting scholars Huimei Liu and Zuozhi Li. Staff, faculty, and graduate students enjoyed a cook-out at John Dattilo’s house followed by a Spike’s baseball game on August 28 to welcome them.

The Fall 2007 RPTM 356 peer mentors were: Molly Barone, Bellefonte Youth Center, Michael Brown, Millbrook Marsh, Kortney Clemons, Snow Shoe Youth Center, Mike Genchi, Greenberg Ice, Thomas Hunt, LateNight-PennState, Lindsay Johnson, SCASD Ferguson, Matt Kapkala, Shaver's Creek, Jeremy McLean, PSU Golf, Jill Robbins, Corl Street Elementary, and Meghan Wikler, OSHER (formally CALL) Lifelong Learning Institute (OLLI).

Hsueh-wen Chow's dissertation was chosen for publication by German publisher VDM Verlag Company. The book, titled Physically Active Leisure Among Older Adults: Measurement, Comparison and Impact, is available from leading booksellers including Amazon.com.

Kortney Clemons, a paralifter and senior in Therapeutic Recreation, was one of three Penn State athletes to qualify for the Parapan American Games, which began on August 7 in Rio de Janeiro. Kortney was also chosen as a Christopher Warren Barnes Endowment recipient for 2007-2008 that is awarded to specially selected undergraduates in the College of Health and Human Development.
The RPTM graduate student organization selected Robby Cooper to be the Department's representative on the HHD Graduate Student Council for 2007-08.

RPTM majors William Ben Duncan, Charles Gruber, Penny Horner, Robert Pearsall, Mira Deen Shiffrin and Brad Snyder were among 23 Penn State students who studied abroad for a portion of the summer in Australia as part of an American Universities International Programs. After a week at James Cook University in Queensland, the students completed field excursions to the Great Barrier Reef, the Australian Rainforests, and the Outback to learn about ecotourism and farming, Aboriginal culture and history, and the wildlife and flora of Australia.

Rehnuma Karim presented a poster at the Society for the Study of Human Development's Fifth Biennial Conference on Crossing Boundaries in Human Development on October 19 based on her dissertation, "Learning to live: A qualitative inquiry on the lives of the female victims of acid attack."

Huan Li received an assistantship with the Schreyer Institute in which she develops and facilitates new programs and workshops, reviews instructional materials and provides feedback to instructors about learning methods and strategies.

Toni Liechty was selected by distinguished reviewers as a recipient of the 2007 Juran Doctoral Award.

Anthony Morelli was elected by his Nittany Lion teammates as one of three captains of the 2007 Penn State football team.

Austin Scott, Anthony Morelli, and John Shaw participated in the 5th annual Lift for Life on July 13, an 11-event athletic competition that drew 3,000 spectators and raised $75,000 for the Kidney Cancer Association.

The PGM Student Society secured almost $5,000 from the University Park Allocation Committee (UPAC) to help 65 students attend the 2008 PGA Merchandise Show and Convention in Orlando, Florida on January 15-20.

Derrick Williams was featured in a Daily Collegian cover story on August 14. Williams discussed his training and dietary habits as well as his goal to help bring Penn State football team to the national championship.

Bobbi-Jo Witmer was RPTM Student Marshal for the Spring 2007 Commencement Exercises. Bobbi-Jo selected Patty Kleban as Faculty Marshal.

Meghan Wolfer, who interned with the State College Spikes in Summer 2007, was shown throwing Frisbees enthusiastically to the crowd in the Daily Collegian’s cover photo on July 17.

RPTM doctoral student Hui (Jimmy) Xie, with co-authors C. Costa and Duarte Morais, wrote the article “Gender differences in rural tourists’ motivations and activity participation,” that was accepted for publication in the Journal of Hospitality and Leisure Marketing.

Kayce Zielinksi was featured in the Daily Collegian for her exceptional play with the Penn State Softball team.

Students in RPTM 356 (Programming in Recreation Services) hosted a midnight Monster Broomball Tournament for over 100 Penn State students on November 2.

Congratulations Faculty

Christine Buzinde was appointed a member of the faculty of Penn State’s Graduate School. Dr. Buzinde was one of eight Penn State faculty to travel to Tanzania this spring as part of a multidisciplinary workshop to meet with doctors, school principals, and leaders to increase understanding of rural life and to initiate collaboration with communities.

Linda Caldwell’s book “Recreation and Youth Development,” co-authored by Peter Witt, was reviewed in the Therapeutic Recreation Journal for the first quarter of 2007. At the NRPA Congress in September, Dr. Caldwell was awarded the Theodore and Franklin Roosevelt Award, which is given annually to a top leisure researcher.

Garry Chick was invited by the College of Health and Human Development Honor Society to attend the annual induction of new members on November 11.

Monty ChristiansenRetired Professor Monty Christiansen was bestowed with the American Society for Testing and Materials (ASTM) International William F. Hulse Memorial Award for outstanding contributions to establishment of voluntary full-consensus standards to enhance safety of sport.

John Dattilo recently published the article “Effects of aquatic therapy on perceived fun or enjoyment experiences of participants with multiple dystrophy” in the 2007 Therapeutic Recreation Journal, 41, 179-200 with his previous doctoral students Ellen Broach and Lexi McKenney. Dr. Dattilo also published the article “Perceptions of cooperation and collegiality by participants of a one-day challenge course program in the Journal of Adventure Education and Outdoor Learning, 7, 37-53 with another one of his past doctoral students, Brent Wolfe.

Mark Ivy and Alan Graefe hosted a barbecue on September 14 for students who enrolled in the Australia study abroad course. Two students, Jessica Kendrick and Meagan Quigley, volunteered to act as student ambassadors to encourage others to participate next year.

“Promoting Older Women’s Health and Well-being Through Social Leisure Environments: What We Have learned from the Red Hat Society®,” by Julie Son, Deborah Kerstetter, Careen Yarnal, and Birgitta Baker, was published in the Journal of Women & Aging, Vol. 19.

Patty Kleban was invited by the Penn State College of Health & Human Development Women's Leadership Initiative (WLI) training program on October 21 to present on the subject "Women and Politics." This year's WLI participants from RPTM are Amanda Tylka, Cara Bell and Robin Bang.

Robert Lee, Jr., Emeritus Professor of SHM & Public Administration, and his wife, Ann, left on August 27 for China to teach English for one year. They were stationed in Beijing during the fall and will move on to Yantai, a coastal city, in the spring.

Duarte Morais and Deborah Kerstetter, along with Dr. Chung-Hsien Lin '04 (lcs123@ms21.hinet.net), Feng-Chia University, and Dr. Jing-Shoiung Hou, National Formosa University, had the article, "Examining the role of cognitive and affective image in predicting choice across natural, developed and theme-park destinations" published in the Journal of Travel Research, 46(2).

“Resource Investments Made Between Customers and Provider: A Study of Teenagers’ Loyalty to a Summer Camp,” by Duarte Morais, Deborah Kerstetter, Yin Shin Lin, and Andrew Mowen, was recently published in the Journal of Travel and Tourism Marketing, Vol. 21(1).

Andrew Mowen and Alan Graefe were both referenced in the June 2007 issue of Parks and Recreation the article titled “Corporate Sponsor Relationships.”

“Citizen Preferences for the Corporate Sponsorship of Public-Sector Park and Recreation Organizations,” by Andrew Mowen, Gerard Kyle, and Mick Jackowski was published in the Journal of Nonprofit and Public Sector Marketing, 18(2).

“The Role of Park Proximity and Social Support in Shaping Park Visitation, Physical Activity, and Perceived Health Among Older Adults,” by Andrew Mowen, Elizabeth Orsega-Smith, Laura Payne, Barbara Ainsworth, and Geoffrey Godbey was published in the Journal of Physical Activity & Health, Vol. 4(2).

In April, Harry Zinn traveled to St. Paul, Minnesota, to attend the George Wright Society Biennial Conference. The Aldo Leopold Wilderness Research Institute invited Dr. Zinn and co-writer Alan Graefe to present a paper about the values and outdoor recreation of the so-called “Generation Me”. The paper will be published in a special edition of the International Journal of Wilderness.

In August, Harry Zinn was an invited presenter and session chair at the 28th Congress of the International Union of Game Biologists, Uppsala, Sweden. Dr. Zinn spoke about how beliefs and attitudes toward wildlife are formed, why these beliefs and attitudes can vary so greatly among different individuals, and how wildlife management professionals can respond to these differences.

Departmental Happenings

Mark Ivy delivered a presentation about the Australia/New Zealand study abroad experience at an RPTM departmental brown-bag lunch on October 29.

Enrollment for the RPTM undergraduate major was 443 for Fall 2007, representing the highest enrollment in the past six years.

The College of Health and Human Development celebrated the naming of the Donald H. Ford Building on September 14. The University's Board of Trustees voted in March to name the building, formerly the Business Administration Building, after the founding dean of the College of Human Development. The dedication ceremony was attended by the head of Board of Regents, Jim Broadhurst, President Graham Spanier, Donald Ford, Dean Ann Crouter and other guests including RPTM faculty, students, and staff who provided guided tours of the building.

Jennifer Howard ('98) joined RPTM as Administrative Specialist on November 26. Jennifer has worked for Marriott, Starwood, and Embassy Suites in Virginia as well as at Penn State’s Department of English.

Special guest Joe Luciano, CEO of Motion Golf, joined the following PGM alumni at the PGM Student Society’s 6th Annual PGM Alumni Panel Discussion on December 5: Daniel Benzenberg ('06) GolfTec, Long Island, NY, Jon Schoenfeld ('05) Ford's Colony Country Club, Williamsburg, VA, Jason Marciniec ('04) Oakmont Country Club, Oakmont, PA, Nolan Sutker ('02) Motion Golf, White Plains, NY, Adam Boland ('01) Zero Restriction Outerwear, Pittsburgh, PA, Jon Boland ('99) Fairway & Greene, Pittsburgh, PA, Joseph Hughes ('99) Penn State Golf Courses, Mark Lammi ('99) Reynold's Plantation, Greensboro, GA, Kevin Wiest ('99) Kings Creek Country Club, Rehoboth Beach, DE, and Hans Larson ('97) Westmoreland Country Club, Wilmette, IL.

Dr. Heung Sik Park, a visiting scholar from Korea, completed his year as an exchange professor at Penn State. While here, Dr. Park collected data pertaining to cultural understandings and American perceptions of Korea as a tourist destination.

Erica Bove Robinson (’04) spoke to RPTM 476 students about her work experiences at The Meadows Psychiatric Center in Centre Hall, PA.

Dr. Douglas Turco, professor and director of the Sport Management Program at DeSales University, visited the Department on August 15. Dr. Turco spent the day meeting with faculty and students and discussing his work in sport tourism research.

The Department hosted Allen Wronowski, the Secretary of the PGA of America, as guest speaker at the PGM Student Society Meeting on September 5, 2007.

Chih-Kuei (Gary) Yeh, Associate Professor of Sports & Leisure Studies at National Dong Hwa University in Taiwan, visited the Department on August 31.

Almost 80 alumni, family members, friends, and Department faculty and staff visited RPTM’s new office space in the Ford Building on September 8 to participate in the Alumni and Friends Open House and Tailgate before enjoying the Penn State-Notre Dame football game.

RPTM students and alumni who use the social networking site Facebook.com can join the “Rec Park Students / Alumni Group" to keep up to date and socialize with each other.

Alumni, family members, friends, and Department faculty and staff visited RPTM’s new office space in the Ford Building at the Alumni and Friends Open House and Tailgate.

Alumni, family members, friends, and Department faculty and staff visited RPTM’s new office space in the Ford Building at the Alumni and Friends Open House and Tailgate.

Notable Quotes

It's hard to believe that this is my last year here at Penn State. I am so glad that I chose to attend school here for the PGM Program - it was probably the best decision I have made in my life. This experience has been nothing short of excellent. – Patrick Gunning, RPTM Student

I wanted to express my deepest appreciation for allowing your students to experience their food internship with me at Café Laura the last two weeks. The students were very disciplined and showed up on time. I think they actually enjoyed the experience and we certainly enjoyed them being here at Café Laura. We look forward to more educational ventures with your group! Thanks. Scott King, General Manager, Café Laura

We were visiting PSU and stopped in to see if any of our former instructors were still teaching. We’re here trying to convince our 16-year-old that Penn State would be a great place to spend four years. Mike Litterst ’87 (mike_litterst@nps.gov) and Jennifer Smith Litterst ‘86

The Leisure Studies program at Penn State University is one of the best two in the US. I have excellent professors such as Drs. Linda Caldwell and Garry Chick. Their profound knowledge, the interesting discussions and brilliant ideas derived from those discussions have made their courses so impressive. Interestingly enough, attending the courses has also become such great fun. I not only learn things, but I learn in a most relaxed and entertaining way. The staff and the head of the Department, Dr. Dattilo are most kind to me. They make sure my needs are satisfied. Dr. Dattilo invited me and the faculty to a most wonderful cook-out in his house and then a baseball match. I do cherish this wonderful study opportunity and want to make full use of it, and then will have a fruitful and happy stay in the US.Huimei Liu, visiting scholar

I just wanted to take the time to Thank You for hosting the BBQ on Saturday and welcoming everyone into the ‘new’ building. As a former student it was a pleasure to see all of my former staff and faculty again and catch up. I will look forward to “At You Leisure” and other RPTM functions that may present themselves in the future.Nicole Nirosky ‘02


If you have accomplished something you would like to share with the RPTM crew, please notify me. Also, if you are aware of accomplishments by our alumni, students, or staff, please let me know so I can share the news. Thank you! –John Dattilo