Becca Krzyszkowski ’16, M.S. ’19, currently works as a recreation supervisor for the City of Brentwood in the greater St. Louis area. In this role, she wears many hats, including overseeing adult and youth sports, managing the scheduling and rental operations for the athletic facilities, pavilions, and meeting rooms, handling the operations of our dog parks, and overseeing a handful of part-time staff. “Our Community Center is also connected to our ice rink, where I’ve learned how to drive the Zamboni!”
Krzyszkowski had no idea that this role (or Zamboni-driving skills) were in her future when she arrived on campus as a freshman with her major undeclared. As someone who enjoys being active, and having worked around aquatics and been involved in sports, she got a job at the Student Fitness Center.
“After working for Campus Recreation for a semester, I realized that I had a passion for recreation, and decided to apply to the recreation and park administration program,” said Krzyszkowski.
After graduating with her undergraduate degree, she started working full-time for Redbird Athletics as the special events coordinator. Krzyszkowski was given the opportunity to continue her education, and she earned her graduate degree in recreation administration.
Now, working for the City of Brentwood, she is doing what she loves. “My favorite part about my job is that I get to interact with so many people!” said Krzyszkowski. “This is truly why I love recreation. Each patron that comes into our facility is here for a different reason and I love being a part of their experience, whether that is helping them register for a program, supervising a slow-pitch softball game, or leading a youth program.”
Krzyszkowski’s job has not been without its difficulties for the last eleven months or so, as the COVID-19 pandemic has challenged all parks and recreation professionals to find new ways of interacting with their constituent groups. “The pandemic has changed how people interact as a whole,” she explained. “We, as programmers, have needed to adjust all aspects of programs, events, meetings, sports leagues, and so on. Of course, we’ve found our ways around meeting in person by changing events and programs to a virtual space, but there were also things that needed to be completely cancelled. Not being able to provide services to our community has been extremely difficult, especially during a time when we all need it most.”
When asked about her time at ISU, Krzyszkowski was quick to mention the relationships that she made, and the Redbird spirit that was evident on campus. “Not only did I love going to different campus events like football games, the circus, and of course, events for the RPA program, but I just really loved my major and all the great friends that came along with it!”
Krzyszkowski’s advice to students is to stay in touch with and get to know your professors. “Go to class early, stay late, and check in with each professor. Getting to know them will help them understand where you want to be in the future. I’ve accepted internships, found jobs, and continued my education all because of the relationships with professors and the connections I’ve made through networking. They are here to help!
To learn more about recreation and park administration or other majors within the School of Kinesiology and Recreation, visit kinrec.illinoisstate.edu.