FAIRMONT, W.Va. – Fairmont State University’s Health and Human Department chair, Jan Kiger was recently named the recipient of the 2020 Recreation and Leisure Leadership Award. The Society of Health and Physical Education for West Virginia (SHAPEWV) designates this award to a member that exhibits outstanding and creative leadership in the recreation profession or as an innovative leisure educator at the collegiate level.

Jan Kiger (courtesy Fairmont State University)

University President Mirta M. Martin said that she can think of no one more deserving of this award.

“I strive to instill leadership and citizenship within students through outdoor leadership programming,” Kiger said. “I am certainly honored to receive a state level recreational and leadership award, as these are both areas where my passion is. However, this wouldn’t have been possible without my colleagues and our students.”

Kiger’s Falcon Park and Trail project, which was launched in 2020, was highlighted in her nomination which established a green space at Fairmont State to improve creativity, problem-solving and academic performance through nature-based learning.

Falcon Trail project (courtesy Fairmont State University)

“The Falcon Trail is such a unique project because it was implemented at a time when many other programs weren’t able to move forward during the COVID-19 pandemic,” Kiger continued. “This initiative was brought to life from the collaborative efforts amongst the Fairmont State Foundation, Student Government Association and the Facilities and Grants Departments. We are very fortunate to be able to provide a space that allows our campus and surrounding communities to engage in the outdoors.”