Tell us a little bit about yourself and how and why you got started in Campus Recreation.
My name is Brad Barlog and I am a first year GA of Facility Operations and Events with University Recreation at Central Michigan University. I received a Bachelors of Applied Arts in Recreation & Event Management with minors in Leadership and Business Management. I am pursuing a Master of Arts Degree in Sports Administration. I first got involved in Campus Recreation as a Freshman in college being hired on as an Intramural Official just to make some extra money. While being an Intramural Official, one of the Supervisors told me they have openings as a Building Supervisor and Student Manager at our Student Activity Center. Me being a freshman and not really any campus recreation experience, I didn't think I would get either position but applied anyway. After my interview, I got a call from the Director of Facility Operations, saying I received both positions as a freshman. I was so excited yet very surprised that I received both positions, especially our Student Manager position, which is the highest level a student can achieve in our department. I worked at University Recreation for five years as an undergrad as a Student Manager, Program Coordinator of Facility Operations, Intramural Official, Event Staff, and Ticket Central Representative. During my sophomore year, I loved working at our Student Activity Center and in Campus Recreation so much, that I actually switched my major from Secondary Education, to Recreation, in hopes of making a career in Campus Recreation.
Why do you want to be the next MIRSA State Student Leader?
I want to be the next MIRSA State Student Leader because I believe I have the skills, passion, and experience in campus recreation. I want to be the voice for all of the Student Membership in MIRSA and for the State of Michigan. With my passion being student development and campus recreation, I believe that this is a perfect fit for my end career goal. I believe this position will better enhance not only my leadership skills, but also my campus recreation experience. I have been a MIRSA member since 2013, and have served on a MIRSA Committee since then. I am very involved with MIRSA and have attended all of the MIRSA conference since 2013, with the exception of last year when I was doing an Internship at the University of Toledo for my undergraduate program. I have some exciting and creative ways to help not only drive up our membership, but also give recognition to our current and long time student and professional members.
What is the importance of students being involved in MIRSA/NIRSA?
There is a huge importance with students being involved in MIRSA/NIRSA. Across Michigan and around the country, we recognize that not everyone working in campus recreation departments are going to go into campus recreation as a field. No matter what career field students are going into, both MIRSA and NIRSA can help gain these student valuable skills to help them in their career path. For one, attending the MIRSA conference is a great way to network with individuals across the state, and make connections. You never know when someone is going to be friends with someone else high up in the ladder for whatever career path you are going to. Also, with MIRSA, students have the opportunity to present in front of their peers, and better enhance their public speaking skills. With being involved with NIRSA, students have a connection with professionals across the country. This can also help to land a job, get a reference, or even make long lasting friends. There are also multiple programs that MIRSA and NIRSA puts on that helps develop students such as our NIRSA mentor program, regional conferences, NIRSA annual conference, workshops, and so much more.
What experiences do you have that make you a strong candidate for the MIRSA State Student Leader position?
I believe I have very strong experiences that will help make me a strong candidate for the MIRSA State Student Leader postion. I have been a member with MIRSA since 2013 of my freshman year of college. I have attended over five MIRSA conferences, and presented three out of the five of them. I have also been a part of a MIRSA State Committee, more specifically the State Workshop for three years. In this committee, I helped plan the annual MIRSA State Workshop each year along with the host school. I help selected the presentations, worked on the schedule and logistics, and also created and updated the Guidebook for each conference. Also, this past MIRSA Conference in October at the University of Michigan, I was awarded the ROBERT W. ENGLAND - MIRSA OUTSTANDING STUDENT award. I was very humbled and grateful for the award and did not expect to win it. That was a huge honor for me and one I will cherish. I have always been a champion of MIRSA and for students to get more involved.
What is a new idea you would like to implement if selected as the new SSL? How would you go about implementing your new idea?
There are a couple of new ideas that I would implement if I was selected as the new SSL. The first one I would like to see is a MIRSA Newsletter that got sent out each month to all MIRSA members, including Student Members. In this newsletter, it would highlight what MIRSA member schools are doing each month, along with having a "Professional Member" and "Student Member Spotlight" each month. Basically, people would submit a nomination to have one professional member and one student be spotlighted in the newsletter for something great they are doing in their department. In this newsletter, we could also highlight events that are going on, or upcoming. The second idea that I have is to create an events calendar on our website of major events going on within our member schools. I think this would be very beneficial as if a school is hosting an officials flag football training clinic, other schools could send their officials there. The third idea that I would have is to do social media spotlights on universities and members. Similar to the spotlight in the newsletter, we could have a professional member and student member of the week on our social media platforms. This would help to give recognition to all of our loyal members in our organization. I also think we could do some contests on your social media platforms like facebook and instagram to help get more followers as well.