New Director Builds Community With Intramurals
By Zane Ewton
The Office of Campus Life tapped a Grand Canyon alum to fill the new position of intramural and recreation director. Kris Hayes has served across campus, both as a student and staff member.
Hayes graduated with a degree in Christian studies in 2009 and soon transitioned to an off-campus position as a finance counselor for the University.His heart was always with the GCU campus. As a student, he and his wife, Jamie, served together as co-resident advisers for the North Rim Apartments. Jamie earned a degree in secondary education and now teaches at Alhambra High School near GCU.
In his new role, Hayes oversees intramural sports as well as student trips and events on campus.
“My wife and I developed a love for college students and for empowering people to discover who they are,” he says. “It is great to be back in a position I can have relationships with students and connect with people.”
He supports ASGCU Intramural Director Ty Kieser in managing intramural seasons and organized trips such as the one to Las Vegas for the Antelopes’ basketball game against UNLV.
“Ty manages the games and the day-to-day operation of intramural sports,” Hayes says. “Whereas I coordinate with Campus Life and the University on big-picture projects for intramurals on campus.”
Hayes credits Campus Life for using this role to provide more opportunities for students to build community on campus.
“Intramurals are a natural way to create relationships,” he says. “Anything we can do to empower students to build community is a good thing. We want intramurals to be as student-oriented and student-owned as possible.”
He already has seen the growth of intramurals on campus, using the volleyball championship game as an example. Even without spectator seating in the Student Recreation Center, more than 100 people showed up.
“When students buy into something, they provide the strongest case for why we should invest in what they want on campus,” Hayes says. “Students have a voice on campus. What they are into is what will happen.”
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