Graduate Programs


ReCon VI - Choose Your Own Adventure

September 2-4, 2016
Canmore, Alberta

About the Conference
Stay In Touch
Program Details
Registration and Bus Transportation
Abstract Submission
Funding Opportunities
About Canmore
Past Conference Archive
ReCon VI Sponsors

About the Conference

ReCon is an annual graduate student retreat and conference that focuses on graduate student research and professional development. It covers topics relevant to students in all phases of their programs. Opportunities for students, staff, and professors to interact in a casual and supportive atmosphere abound. Whether students are new to the faculty or nearing the end of their programs, attendance at ReCon is an extremely valuable interdisciplinary experience that is a lot of fun!
The theme for Recon VI is Choose Your Own Adventure! So much of the graduate student experience is about gaining experiences through different avenues: learning skills, building knowledge, creating social networks, trying out new activities, or even studying abroad! ReCon VI: Choose Your Own Adventure will highlight the many opportunities available to graduate students in the Faculty of Physical Education and Recreation at the University of Alberta, both during their graduate programs and after they leave. With so many opportunities available, all you need to do is choose your own graduate student adventure!

What are the Benefits of Attending ReCon?

    • Be exposed to the wide breadth of research conducted in the faculty.
    • Be challenged to think critically about topics outside of your research area.
    • Present and receive critical feedback on your research in a safe environment.
    • Meet and reconnect with other students, staff, and faculty members.
    • Build valuable friendships and support systems.
    • Connect with the beautiful Rocky Mountains, including breathtaking views, diversity of wildlife, and endless recreational activities.

How do I sign up? 

  1. Register & book transportation
    • General registration June 16 to August 26, 2016 ($125)
  2. Book your hotel
    • Special conference rate ($127)
  3. Submit an abstract (not required)
    • Abstract submission will run from May 1 to July 15, 2016
    • All abstracts will be accepted

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Stay in Touch

Follow us on social media and get up to date information on ReCon VI!

Follow our Facebook page
Join the Facebook Event page
Follow us on Twitter @ReCon_UofA

If you’re sharing on Facebook, uploading fun pictures on Instagram, or Tweeting about us use the Hashtag #ReConVI to stay connected!

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Program Details

Click here for the ReCon VI Program.

Click here for presentation abstracts for RecCon VI

Keynote Speakers

Alumni Speaker

Maria Lynn, MA
Senior Parks Planner
Kananaskis Region, Alberta Parks

Recon VI Keynote Speaker Maria LynnMaria holds a Master of Arts in Recreation and Leisure Studies and a Bachelor of Arts in Recreation, Sport, and Tourism, both from the University of Alberta. During her graduate studies she was awarded the U of A Master’s Scholarship, the SSHRC Joseph-Armand Bombadier Canada Graduate Scholarship, the Walter H Johns Graduate Fellowship, and the Alberta Advanced Education Graduate Student Scholarship. Recently, Maria was also awarded the Travel and Tourism Research Association DMAC Graduate Researcher Award. In addition to these honours, Maria was involved in academic student life as the GSA representative for the Physical Education and Recreation Graduate Student Society, a guest lecturer in RLS 100, 263, 500 and PEDS 201, and had the sincere opportunity of representing students at the National Recreation Summit. Both of Maria’s degrees have been pivotal in providing the foundation for a successful professional career that bridges the areas of parks, tourism, sport, and recreation. 

Maria has been with the Alberta Provincial Government since 2008. She started as a Policy and Land Use Planner with Alberta Parks in Edmonton, before moving over to the Tourism Division in Visitor Services and Tourism Product Development. It was only a few years in between before Maria returned to Alberta Parks in the position of Ministry Consultation and Engagement Advisor. In fall 2014, Maria moved to Canmore to take on the position of Senior Parks Planner for the Kananaskis Region. Her favourite thing about parks is all the unique, incredible, and unsuspecting places you can discover such as the awe-inspiring view scape at the top of a climb, the solitude of a remote site, a glimpse of wildlife, or a rare geological feature. Maria’s work as a planner contributes to these amazing places by providing the planning processes, critical thinking, and people skills to guide decision-making.

Maria continues to live amidst the mountains in Canmore, realizing her dreams of a life connected to nature, community, and to pursuing skiing, climbing, hiking, and mountain biking. Maria also loves to canoe, crochet, travel a far, and recently, has picked up the surfing fever! Family, friends, and the simply joys in life are her beacon to staying grounded in what she will attest is a very busy, constantly changing and incredibly complex region.

The Rod Murray Memorial Address

The 4th Annual Rod Murray Memorial Address Recipient is Lindsay Eales!

Each year a selected senior PhD student delivers a keynote address to the ReCon delegates. The address embodies the qualities that distinctively defined Rod as a member of the graduate student community. He was a passionate teacher, committed to critical thinking, who had a steadfast belief in the role of the public intellectual. Rod believed in a thoughtful questioning of the ‘status quo’ as it applied to teaching, conducting research, building relationships, and translating our knowledge.

This year, On behalf of the Rod Murray Address Selection Committee and the ReCon Organizing Committee, the PERGSS Executive Committee are pleased to announce that Lindsay Eales has been selected to deliver the 4th Annual Rod Murray Memorial Address at ReConVI!

ReCon VI Rod Murray Annual Address: The Mad Dance of Grad School: A Choose Your Own Adventure

Weaving dance, performance, theory and personal experience, in this presentation I will grapple with madness at grad school. Within our graduate careers the vast majority of us will encounter mental illness, in our own lives or in the lives of those we care about. I want to explore how to navigate graduate school while experiencing madness, and how best to support others. I also want to celebrate how mental illness can be generative of community, creative living and quality of life. Through this ‘Choose Your Own Adventure’ performance, I hope to offer some thoughts, tools, and embodied experiences that honour Rod Murray’s legacy as a passionate thinker, instructor, and activist.

Lindsay Eales is a PhD candidate and Vanier scholar (SSHRC) in the Faculty of Physical Education and Recreation. She is also the co-artistic director of CRIPSiE (the Collaborative Radically Integrated Performers Society in Edmonton), the programming director for Solidance Inclusive Recreation Society, and a certified occupational therapist. She has instructed, choreographed and performed integrated dance for 10 years. Lindsay’s artistic work has been a part of numerous local, provincial and national performance festivals. Her Masters’ research focused on practices and performances of social justice in integrated dance (dance by and for people experiencing disability as well as their artistic and political allies). Her current research focuses on using dance as a research method for exploring mad politics, aesthetics, and mad-accessible movement practices. Her work has been published in journals such as Adapted Physical Activity Quarterly, Emotion, Space and Society, and Leisure/Loisir. Lindsay is honoured and excited to be giving the Rod Murray Memorial Address at RECON VI.

A special message from Lindsay's nominator: It is with great pleasure that I nominated Lindsay Eales for the 2016 Rod Murray Memorial Address. Ms. Eales emulates the qualities of a public intellectual. She brings critical thought and reflection to the public sphere, engaging with the realities of society that are built around normative expectations that can marginalize and exclude sectors of society. Ms. Eales as a public intellectual is a dissenter. She brings a reflexive awareness of that which makes others uncomfortable - our ableism, our inattention to social injustice, and our comfort with the status quo. Ms. Eales is also a revealer of truth, a truth that can be inconvenient, even frustrating at times as issues of access, accessibility, fairness, and inequality are raised again and again to those of us to which it has little perceived meaning or relevance. Ms. Eales as a public intellectual is a thinker, a position that she gains in part, from being at an institution of higher learning, but I would suggest that her ongoing reflexivity comes with no moral or political obligation (to industry or government). How members of the disability community are represented is fraught with ethical questions around harm, voice, power, control, and relationship - issues of deep importance to Lindsay. Following Rod’s lead, Lindsay beings a scholastic vitality to our graduate program and her own work, she has stimulated my thinking deeply, and she possesses an intellectual curiosity that is not contained by disciplinary limits.

Professional Development Sessions

Earn your Professional Development credits! No additional costs.

Starting in September 2016, all new students admitted to graduate programs at the University of Alberta will be required to complete 8 hours of professional development training to graduate. This will include filling in an individual program plan (IDP) and discussing professional development with your supervisor.

Check out the FGSR website and the IDP document here.

The goal is to ensure our graduates have the best chance of getting jobs once they graduate. Your degree program is not just about having more education – it is real life training and job experience! Expanding your professional development knowledge and skills can help you position yourself better to achieve your career goals- no matter the path.

One great thing about the University of Alberta – we have access to so much FREE Professional development.

One great thing about ReCon VI- the professional development sessions you attend at ReCon can count towards your required hours.  

Details for our professional development sessions will be available online shortly. 

Professional Development Session 1

Communicating Across Silos: Interdisciplinary Conversations Part I -
Dr. Nancy Spencer-Cavaliere introduces what is meant by "interdisciplinary communications" and what it means in the context of "Phys Ed and Rec". Students will join a group simulation exercise, aimed at letting students work together through real-life scenarios that require interdisciplinary conversations. This session will establish a foundation for creating interdisciplinary conversations in research and will be expanded on in the PD session Part II. Keynote Speaker: Dr. Nancy Spencer-Cavaliere, along with invited faculty members.

Professional Development Session 2

Communicating Across Silos: Interdisciplinary Conversations Part II - from Student Perspective
Building on the PD session Part I, this session will emphasize senior graduate students' interdisciplinary conversations including sharing past experiences in grant and scholarship applications, committee formation, candidacy exams and thesis defence, teaching experiences, job hunting and post-graduate professional careers, knowledge dissemination at conferences, and more. Invited panelists include Eun-Young Lee, Shintaro Kono, Kelsie Acton, Jodie Stearns, Anne-Marie Selzler, and Vincent Tedjasaputra.

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Outdoor Activities

This year, a range of activities will be offered! Students can choose their own adventure, while enjoying the beauty and backdrop of the incredible Rocky Mountains. 

Saturday Activities:

  • Hike around the beautiful Rocky Mountains, enjoy the scenery and explore the rocky terrain OR
  • Go mountain biking at the Nordic Center*. Choose your own adventure and ride beginner, intermediate, or advanced trails through the mountains.
    •  Students new to mountain biking can book a 1.5hour lesson for only $45.00!
    • Students may rent a mountain bike for their mountain biking adventure. Bike rentals will be available for a great ReCon VI rate of $20. This special price is only offered until AUgust 12, 2016. See below for bike sizing options and booking details.
      •  Bike Sizing: sizing is based on your height
        • Small 5'2" - 5'7"
        • Medium 5'7"- 6'
        • Large: 6' - 6'3"
        • For other sizing options please email us directly.

Bike rentals can be done through the activity registration centre until August 12, 2016
BY PHONE: 780-492-2231
IN PERSON: Room 1-213, Van Vliet Complex.
Monday to Friday from 0900-1700

Sunday Activities:

  • Geo – cache. Join a team and race to solve puzzles, find directions and locate your geo-cache. Additional fees may apply.

*Additional fees may apply. Details coming shortly.

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Dining Arrangements

Friday September 2nd:

Dinner reservations have been made at Patrino's Steakhouse in Canmore. A select menu will be provided for ReCon VI and will include vegetarian/vegan options. Details will be posted shortly. Delegates will be responsible for paying for their meals.

Saturday September 3rd:

  • The conference dinner will take place at the Coast Hotel and Conference Center.
  • The dinner is included with registration. However, delegates will be responsible for their own beverages.
  • Dinner Menu:
    • Caprese and Caesar Salad with Garlic bread
    • Pasta with either Bolognese sauce or Chicken Alfredo
    • Veggie and deli platters
    • Fresh fruit and assorted desserts
    • *Vegetarian and vegan options are available by special request (please indicate this request on your registration survey)
  • Non-Delegates: Tickets will be available for purchase ahead of time. We will send out an announcement when these tickets are available. There will not be tickets available for purchase at the conference. 
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Registration and Bus Transportation

Conference Costs:

$125.00 CDN

Registration ends August 26th!

Once you have registered, please fill in our survey. This will ensure you get your lunch selections and any special arrangements (i.e. dietary restrictions) are taken care of! If you have any questions, please email

Fill in the survey here.

What is Included?
  • Conference registration for the weekend 
  • A conference bag stuffed with goodies!
  • 2 breakfasts (Saturday and Sunday) 
  • 2 lunches (Saturday and Sunday) 
  • Conference dinner at the Coast Hotel (Saturday) 
  • Transportation to Canmore and to activities during the conference (if needed)*.

*When you register, please indicate whether you need transportation to Canmore. This will be included with your registration fees, however if you book transportation and do not show up you will be charged for it.  Please note: there are no inexpensive/ public transportation options from Edmonton to Canmore.

Bus transportation will leave the Jubilee Theatre (across from the Butterdome) on Friday, September 2, 2016 at 8 a.m. with loading commencing at 7:30 a.m.

Bring a Guest:

  • Registered* ReCon VI attendees may bring a guest to the Saturday evening dinner for an additional cost.
  • Cost per guest is $33 and includes Saturday dinner banquet meal (drinks are not included).
  • Extra banquet tickets must be purchased in advance as they will not be available at ReCon VI.
  • Use registration code 34107 to register a guest for the banquet dinner.

*Guests must accompany a registered ReCon VI attendee.

How to Register:

There are three ways to register for ReCon VI:

1. Online

You can pay online by credit card through the Activity Registration Center. This is a fast, secure way of ensuring your fees are paid; you will be emailed a receipt. First, you will need a pin. To obtain a pin, click on the “create new account” option beside the login button. Creating an account and obtaining a PIN can take 2-4 business days. This will enable you to access the site and to register and pay securely.

The conference registration is located on the activity registration website. To find the conference click on the “programs” tab at the top and then select “conferences” from the list on the left. The conference is called ReCon VI.

Registration code: 33176

2. By Phone

The Activity Registration Center can be reached at 780-492-2231.
Only MasterCard and VISA are accepted.
Please mention registration code: 33176

3. In Person

Activity Registration Center– Sales Office
Room 1-213, Van Vliet Centre.
Hours: Monday to Friday from 0900-1700
The sales office accepts Visa, MasterCard, Debit, Cash, and Personal Cheques.
Please mention registration code: 33176

Regsiter as a guest.
Registered attendees may bring a guest to ReCon VI, by having their guest register for the full weekend. Full fees will apply, and guests with full conference registration will be able to attend all meals (2 breakfasts, 2 lunches, banquet dinner), as well as attend the conference, and make use of the bus transportation to/from Edmonton!

To register a guest, follow the registration steps, above.

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The Coast Hotel and Conference Center is located along Bow Valley Trail in Canmore, a short walk from downtown Canmore, including an array of restaurants and shops. The conference venue is fully accessible.

We have secured a special room rate for ReCon VI attendees of $127 per night (single or double occupancy). If you have more people sharing your room it will be an extra $15 per person per night. Please note: these rates do not include taxes. Hotel booking deadline for this special ReCon VI rate is August 16, or until rooms are sold out. Don’t delay, book today.

Two years ago, a group of dedicated students, who were passionate about ReCon, took the initiative to help raise some money for YOU! They utilized the USeed crowdfunding website to raise funds to help offset hotel costs for students attending ReCon in 2015 and 2016! We are excited to announce that this year USeed is supporting graduate students attending ReCon VI by providing a $50 credit towards each students hotel costs (i.e. if you have two students in the room, the hotel will be discounted $100).

If you have any questions please email Kateline or Chelsea at

Students are responsible for booking their own room and finding your own roommates! Please use our ReCon Facebook page as a source for connecting with other graduate students and finding roommates!

Hotel ReCon VI rates are limited in availability! Book your room now to secure your ReCon VI room rate!

How to Book Your Hotel:

1. Online
You can pay online by credit card by going to the Coast Hotel website
Visa, MasterCard and American Express are accepted.

** Make sure the correct dates are selected for your stay**
** Your credit card will not be charged until you check out of the hotel at the end of the conference**


2. By Phone
Coast Hotel Reservations can be reached at 403-678-3625 or toll free 1-800-716-6199.
Visa, MasterCard and American Express are accepted.
Please mention that you are staying with RECON VI

Check out is noon.
We have arranged luggage storage in a secure area on Friday afternoon (until check in) and from 12-3pm on Sunday.

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Abstract Submission

Presenting at ReCon is a wonderful opportunity to discuss your research and get valuable feedback from professors and students from the Faculty. It is also a great way to sharpen your presentation skills before presenting at larger conferences, submitting for publication, or preparing for an oral exam. Even if you have presented the paper at a conference prior to ReCon, there will be many people in the crowd for whom it will be 'new'.

Abstracts from all research areas are welcomed and students are encouraged to submit abstracts for all types of projects, including (but not limited to) proposals, works-in-progress, and finished projects. For example, course-based Master’s students can present their capping project or a project for a class, while Coaching Master’s students may present work that they have done with an athletic team.


All student abstracts are accepted. Deadline to submit your abstract is July 15, 2016.

Select from various presentation formats:

  • Standard – 12 minute oral presentation -  submissions closed
  • Mini – 3 minute oral presentation -  submissions closed
  • Poster – poster presentation - submissions closed
  • Alternative – Try something different! -  submissions closed

Presentation Guidelines

*Please check back for presentation guidelines*

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Funding Opportunities

Below is a list of travel awards offered by the University

FGSR Travel Awards
GSA Professional Development Award
Green and Gold Student Leadership and Professional Development Grant
Physical Education and Recreation Graduate Travel Grant

Check with your supervisor about potential travel awards in your research area.

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About Canmore

Canmore is a quaint mountain town located on the eastern slopes of the Canadian Rockies and is 1 hour west of Calgary. Banff National Park lies just to the west and north of Canmore, with the town of Banff only fifteen minutes away. Outdoor activities in Canmore are abundant, and include hiking, scrambling, climbing, mountain biking, kayaking, and canoeing. The city holds a world class Nordic center and is within proximity of 5 major ski resorts. If a stroll around town is what you fancy, you’ll find a variety of restaurants, pubs, unique shops, and an inspiring collection of local art.

For more information on Canmore check out the Tourism Canmore/Kananaskis website at, and for more information on Banff check out the Town of Banff website at If you plan to stay in Canmore a day or two extra, check HERE for a list of recommended restaurants and activities!

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Past Conference Archive

Detailed Program from ReCon V
Detailed Program from ReCon IV
Detailed Program from ReCon III
Detailed Program from ReCon II
Detailed Program from ReCon I

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ReCon VI Sponsors

Physical Education and Recreation Graduate Student Society (PERGSS)