Assistant Professor

Kimberly Lopez 

Contact information

Office: B.C. Matthews Hall (BMH) 2211

Phone: 519-888-4567, ext. 42009



Pronouns: she/her/hers

Research interests

I critically examine social structures that reinforce difference and marginalisation. As a community-engaged qualitative scholar, I value working collaboratively and creatively to know more about: leisure and self-care in caring work, invisibility in caring labour, aging well in long-term care homes, leisure in and through helping professions, and digital leisure technologies.  With a background in facilitating inclusive leisure and recreation experiences, I am committed to social change through transformational inquiry, inclusive organisation, advocacy, and activism. Guided by intersectionality, critical race and feminist theories, my current research with women of colour uses narrative methods (body maps and digital stories) to discuss the ways racialising, gendering, and classing occurs through caring labour and the impacts of these social processes.

Graduate supervision and student opportunities

I am currently accepting applications from graduate students with research interests related to:

  • Leisure, well-being, and wellness
  • Intersectionality
  • Politics of care labour/work
  • Caring practices, culture change, and leisure in long-term care
  • Critical, critical race, feminist theories
  • Qualitative methodologies (narrative inquiry, community engaged and action-oriented research)
  • Arts-based and digital methods

Graduate studies application details

Teaching interests

  • Therapeutic recreation, difference, inclusion, advocacy, and activism
  • Race/ethnicity, gender, and class
  • Wellness, well-being, health, and leisure
  • Aging well and leisure in later life
  • Qualitative methodologies and critical theories


  • REC 357: Theories and Evidence for Therapeutic Recreation
  • REC 405: Leisure and Well-being
  • REC 455: Advanced Seminar in Therapeutic Recreation
  • REC 673/REC 773: Advanced Qualitative Research Design


BSc, University of Toronto

Post-Graduate Certificate in TR, Georgian College

MA, University of Waterloo

PhD, University of Waterloo

Selected publications

See Google Scholar for full list of publications.

Lopez, K. J. (2018). We are not a machine”: Personal support workers' (ante)narratives of labour, leisure, and hope amidst politics of genderacialised care in long-term care homes (Doctoral dissertation, University of Waterloo).

Lopez. K. J., Muldoon, M. L. & McKeown, J. K. L. (in press). One day of #Feminism: Twitter as a complex digital arena for wielding, shielding, and trolling talk on feminism. Leisure Sciences

Lyons, K. J., & Lopez, K. J. (2015). Re-imagining inclusive, existential approaches to spirituality in therapeutic recreation. Leisure/Loisir, 39(2), 215-234

Lopez, K. J., & Dupuis, S. L. (2014). Exploring meanings and experiences of wellness from residents living in long-term care homes. World Leisure Journal, 56(2), 141-150

Lopez, K. (2012). Expanding understandings: Meanings and experiences of wellness from the perspectives of residents living in Long-Term Care (LTC) homes (Master's thesis, University of Waterloo).

University of Waterloo