Dr. Diane Groff, Ed.D, LRT/CTRS
Department of Exercise and Sport Science
Dr. Diane Groff is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Exercise and Sport Science at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. Her work focuses on Recreation and Leisure Studies with an emphasis on Recreation Therapy and Leadership. Dr. Groff received her B.S. in Recreation Administration from the University of N.C. at Greensboro (1984), her M.A. in Adventure Recreation from Radford University (1989), and her Ed.D. in Therapeutic Recreation from the University of Georgia (1998). She currently serves as the coordinator of the Recreation Administration minor (Recreation Administration Information Sheet) at UNC-CH. Dr. Groff teaches several courses within the department including: RECR 311(Recreation and Leisure in Society (SS); RECR 420 (Program Planning in Recreation Services (EE); RECR 430 (Leadership and Group Dynamics (CI); RECR 475 (Disability, Culture, and Therapeutic Recreation (SS, US); and EXSS 273 (Research Methods).
In addition to her teaching responsibilities, Dr. Groff is the Co-Director of the Get REAL & HEEL breast cancer program (Get REAL & HEEL). Her research focuses on the impact of an integrated recreation therapy and exercise program on the physical and psychosocial well-being of women post treated for breast cancer. She is collaborating on several grants with individuals within the EXSS Department, UNC Hospitals, and the Lineberger Comprehensive Cancer Center. She also continues to work with individuals with physical disabilities in an effort to understand how physical activity and adapted sport affects quality of life. She has published her research in national and international journals such as the Therapeutic Recreation Journal, Journal of Sport Behavior, Medicina Sportiva, SCHOLE, and the Annual in Therapeutic Recreation. She has presented her work at state, national, and international conferences such as the American Society of Clinical Oncology, National Recreation and Parks Association, Leisure Research Symposium, International Congress on Physical Activity and Health, American Therapeutic Recreation Association, and the North Carolina Recreation Therapy Association.
Dr. Groff performs considerable service to the university, state and profession. She is currently the faculty advisor the Chapel Hill Adapted Sport Experience (CHASE); representative on the N.C. Allied Health Council; advisory council member to Healthy Out of School Time program; Recreation and Physical Activity Advisory Board Member of the N.C. Office on Disability and Health; and Committee Chair on the NC Triangle Affiliate of the Susan G. Komen Race for the Cure. In recognition for her contributions she has received several awards including: Certificate of Excellence presented by the N.C. Recreation Therapy Association; Ethel Martus Lawther Alumni Award presented by the School of Health and Human Performance at UNC-Greensboro; Outstanding Professional Service Award presented by the School of Health and Human Performance at East Carolina University; Meritorious Service on Behalf of People with Disabilities awarded by Pitt County Committee for Employment of People with Disabilities; and was instrumental in helping Pitt County, N.C. secure the second place Community Award for Outstanding Disability Program from the National Organization on Disability/United Parcel Service.
Her employment as a Recreation Therapist includes work with women with breast cancer, individuals with spinal cord injuries, and coaching adapted youth sports. She has also worked in the field of parks and recreation as a co-owner of a small business that specialized in building ropes challenge courses and facilitating group development, whitewater raft guide and canoe instructor, and assistant outdoor coordinator for a municipal parks and recreation department. In her free time she enjoys running, playing volleyball, golfing, outdoor activities, boating, and spending time with her family and dog.