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Health and Human Performance Students Embark on Global Educational Expedition

Justin Menchaca and Parker Rivers, Master of Science in Recreation and Leisure Services in Recreation Management students at Texas State University, ventured on a transformative educational journey accompanied by their professor, Dr. Jo An Zimmermann, an associate professor in the Department of Health and Human Performance.

Menchaca and Rivers immersed themselves in the "Multiplicities of Leisure: Seeing Through Other Lenses" program at the World Leisure Centre of Excellence Field School, hosted in the scenic city of Dunedin, New Zealand. This exclusive field school, limited to fifteen students globally, marked the first-ever inclusion of students from institutions beyond the World Leisure Centres of Excellence network. Menchaca and Rivers delved into leisure studies within a diverse international setting.

The students gained practical insights from real projects, activities, and case studies as part of this exclusive cohort of students. Their experience involved expanding their network with like-minded individuals and experts and gaining access to exclusive infrastructures. Guided by the World Leisure Educational Study Tour, these encounters enriched their understanding, positioning Menchaca and Rivers to contribute significantly to the continually evolving recreation and leisure services field.

Students and Professor posing for photo in front of their presentation

Parker Rivers, Dr. Jo An Zimmermann, and Justin Menchaca at the World Leisure Congress

students giving presentation

Menchaca gave a presentation about his experience attending the World Leisure Centre of Excellence Field School.

students giving presentation

Rivers gave a presentation about his experience attending the World Leisure Centre of Excellence Field School.

Immediately following their field school experience, Menchaca and Rivers presented their experience to an international group of scholars and professionals who attended the World Leisure Congress. The Congress brings together leisure professionals from academia, government, and industry to engage in informative, stimulating, and challenging discussions on the latest issues in leisure. The 2023 theme of the Congress was 'Leisure: Learn well, live well.'

Established in 1952, the World Leisure Organization, a non-profit global body with consultative status with the UN Economic and Social Council, hosted this educational study tour. Committed to enhancing the quality of life through meticulously selected leisure experiences, the organization advocates for leisure's integral role in social, cultural, economic, and sustainable environmental development.


About the Recreation Management Program (M.S.R.L.S.)

The recreation management program at Texas State University focuses on innovative and evidence-based professional preparation to ready students for many different careers within the leisure services profession. Adhering to values of real-world experience, diversity and evidence-based practices, the recreation management program prepares professionals to meet the ever-changing needs of constituents. The goals are to prepare graduates who will lead the advancement of leisure services through innovative programming, professional service and research.