Don Rogers, Ph.D., CTRS
Professor & Chairperson
Keystone Adventure Program Director
Arena C - 15
Don completed an undergraduate degree at University of North Texas in Therapeutic Recreation (1989) and a Masters at Indiana University in Therapeutic Recreation with an outdoor emphasis (1992). He earned his Doctorate from Indiana University in the Department of Recreation, Park, and Tourism Studies with emphases in Leisure Behavior and Family Counseling (1998). During his doctoral studies, Don was a full-time Visiting Lecturer teaching undergraduate and graduate classes in the Therapeutic Recreation program, advising undergraduate students and supervising internships.
Prior to completing his doctorate, Don worked for 6 summers in residential camping for youth and adults with disabilities. While at IU, he worked on grants that provided education and training on accessibility. He also spent considerable time designing challenge courses, providing staff trainings and generally working in the outdoor adventure and recreation fields as a consultant, trainer and conference presenter. Since joining the faculty of Indiana State University in 1998, he has expanded on his research and publications in these areas. Of recent note is the 4th edition of the Complete Ropes Course Manual, published by Kendal Hunt, chapters on the ADA and Adventure Programming in Sawyer's 12th edition Facility Design and Management, a chapter in Wurdinger and Steffen's Developing Challenge Course Programs for Schools, and an article in the American Journal of Recreation Therapy (2007) titled Adolescents with spinal cord injury: Indications and suggestions for recreation therapy practice.
Don's work in the challenge course and accessibility areas has attracted international attention, taking him to Australia, Taiwan, Canada, and most recently to Japan. This work has consisted of consulting with programs, providing staff trainings, assisting with course and facility designs, and presenting at conferences.
Martial Arts is also an interest area of Don's. While at ISU, Don has studied Hapkido, attaining his first dan Black belt rank, and is studying Kali/Escrima, a Philippine stick fighting art. While martial arts has a strong personal appeal, Dr. Rogers is currently doing research to investigate the benefits they provide to people with disabilities. He is also working to help martial arts instructors include students with disabilities in their teaching. Don's primary instructor is Sifu Jason Winkle with many others in the ISU martial arts program providing instruction and support over the past 10 years.
He is also an active member of the Association for Challenge Course Technology and the American Therapeutic Recreation Association. At ISU, Dr. Rogers coordinates the Recreation Therapy emphasis, directs the Keystone Adventure Program at the ISU Sycamore Outdoor Center. In its early stages is the National Inclusive Martial Arts Academy (NIMAA).
Finally, and most importantly, Don has a wonderful family. His wife, Dr. Nancy Brattain Rogers is an Associate Vice President at ISU, and he has a daughter, Laura, and son, Jonathan. When time permits, which isn't often enough, Don loves to do his impression of a bass fisherman.