Future Directions Committee Recommendations

Emily H. Wughalter
San Jose State University, CA

This spring the NAPEHE Future Directions Committee met in San Diego at the Clarion Bay View Hotel, a beautiful site for the 1999 NAPEHE annual conference. The Clarion and the surrounding downtown San Diego location is on par with our best conference sites. The rebuilt Gas Lamp Quarter boasts a large number of restaurants, art galleries, microbreweries, lovely harbor front views, easy transportation to all parts of the city, miles of waterfront walkways with stunning vistas, and an extremely friendly support staff at the hotel with first rate accommodations and conference facilities. With a little bit of luck we will be treated to some first class southern California weather for the January 7-11, 1999 conference. But bring your umbrella: California can be rainy in January.

The committee members met for two days focusing in depth on the broad issues affecting academia, as well as how the structure of kinesiology continues to evolve within a new set of academic expectations. At dinner on Friday night we focused on the transformations of our home departments and academic institutions over the last two decades. Members of our committee members represented research and comprehensive universities of varying sizes and from different regions of the country (Steve Estes, SUNY Cortland, NY; Virginia Overdorf, William Patterson College, NJ; Jack Razor, University of Georgia; Robert Ruhling, George Mason University, VA; Emily Wughalter, San Jose State University, CA). In our Saturday meeting we produced several specific recommendations for the NAPEHE board to consider. They are related to technology, NAPEHE membership, affiliation with other professional organizations, and social justice/cultural diversity initiatives.

NAPEHE's accomplishments in technology have been on the cutting edge. They include: the NAPEHE website; the growth of kinexis; OPERA in on-line form. The Technology Committee should continue to: 1) define the role of NAPEHE in facilitating the delivery of in-service training for professionals in our field as in the preconference workshop on technology offered at annual conferences, 2) appraise the membership of proper uses of technology in our field possibly through position papers, and, 3) explore the use of the website (www.napehe.org) to publish abstracts, upcoming conference schedules, papers and/or proceedings of the annual conference electronically. The WEB would provide advertisement of the conference and its proceedings, and possibly boost attendance at the annual conference. The Hanna, Homans, and Sargent lectures should continue to be published in Quest only. It was suggested this task of making specific recommendations should be forwarded to the technology and publications committees.

With regard to NAPEHE membership, specific ideas were generated for evaluating the make up of the membership to identify why members join and remain active in NAPEHE; and, what members perceive as the positive benefits of NAPEHE membership. The future directions committee recommends to the Executive Secretary and the membership committee that an institutional analysis of members and benefits be undertaken. This survey can elicit information about member demographics, academic disciplines, conference attendance, regional representation at conferences, university affiliations, and the anticipation of their future needs. Also consideration of the cost and benefits of institutional membership should examined for possible increases.

NAPEHE has been successful in its affiliation with other organizations like College and University Administrative Council (CUAC) and the American Academy of Kinesiology and Physical Education (AAKPE). Affiliations with other organizations outside the field such as American Association of Higher Education (AAHE) may also be established.

NAPEHE can provide model programs on social justice and cultural diversity. The social justice and cultural diversity committee should continue to generate funds to support development and recruitment of future faculty who represent diverse cultures, as was done recently with a grant in support of gay and lesbian students.

As for business of the future directions committee the members agreed that a narrative of the minutes should be published yearly in The Chronicle of Physical Education in Higher Education and on the NAPEHE web site. Meetings of the future directions committee should continue yearly and should be held at the site of the future national conference. All meetings should be structured around an agenda which includes reference to the mission of the organization for old and new members of the committee.

Finally, the conference theme emerging for the 1999 conference reflects the changing and diverse nature of the university, specifically with reference to technology, administrative structures, students' learning styles, and issues of cultural diversity. The title for the conference and the dynamics of the sessions will be developed by Vice President Robert Ruhling and President Steve Estes, with input from the future directions committee.

I'd especially like to thank Steve Estes for his great note-taking at our meeting and then providing them to me and the committee; and, I wish Ginny Overdorf good luck as she assumes the role of Chair for the Future Directions Committee in 1998-1999. Working on this committee was a great experience, for it gave me a chance to think about core issues in kinesiology, and to dialogue with other members of the NAPEHE professoriate.