Dallas Pennock of Washington, Mo., who is pursuing his bachelor’s degree in recreation from Southeast Missouri State University, is completing an internship with the City of Washington Parks and Recreation Department in Washington, Mo.
At Southeast, Pennock is involved in the Recreation Enhancement club, which has allowed him opportunities to participate in activities around the area, spread information about his field and meet others.
“Getting involved and being a part of something has been the greatest contribution to my success in and out of the classroom,” Pennock said. “Saying ‘yes’ is the best way to succeed in college by opening more doors, and more opportunities become available for new experiences.”
Pennock works with the city’s driving range, helps maintain a golf course in the area, organizes events, helps manage cashiers at a city pool, works with residents, and assists with the maintenance department in the city.
“This internship has been very beneficial towards my future by introducing me to every angle of the field and opening doors to various projects and responsibilities, much like a recreation coordinator or director deals with in a daily schedule,” Pennock said.
While at Southeast, Pennock lived in Towers, a residence hall complex at Southeast, and said it was a tremendous experience.
“I met some of my best friends while residing in Towers, and had some of the best experiences of my life with those friends,” Pennock said. “On-campus residency also offered many activities to get students involved with meeting other people. I also enjoyed my opportunity as a recreation major because most of my peers were great people and a ton of fun to be around. They also enjoyed doing everything that I did, which was very outdoor involved.”
When he’s not attending classes at Southeast, Pennock likes to hang out with his friends at local eating establishments in Cape Girardeau.
He also plays rugby with the Kohlfeld Scorpions Rugby Club of Cape Girardeau, and last year he served as its president.
He said that “getting to know all those guys and even some of the alumni players was a great way to meet more people and it led to some of the greatest times I had while living in Cape.”
Pennock says he likes to go fishing and deer hunting. Pennock says deer hunting is his greatest passion. He has traveled to Australia and New Zealand, which opened his eyes to new cultures.
“It was the greatest experience of my life, and it really opened my eyes to accepting different cultures and ethnic backgrounds. The countries were beautiful, the people were very friendly, and the atmosphere was great,” Pennock said.
He plans to travel to Alaska eventually.
“Known for being the last frontier, I would love to travel there and see all the state has to offer in its national parks, countryside and coastlines,” Pennock said.
His ideal job would be to work with a muncipality’s parks and recreation department after he graduates from Southeast.
“After graduation I plan on continuing my future in municipal parks and recreation and hopefully become involved with a community offering a job related to my education,” Pennock said.
Pennock encourages students to regularly attend class while at Southeast and take advantage of opportunities offered through their degree program.
“Go to class,” Pennock said. “The freedom of being away from home and out from under mom and dad’s wings is a great feeling, but if you do not get your foot in the door early, you will only work twice as hard playing catch up further down the road as the classes get harder and the work load gets heavier.”