Maybe the two great loves of your life are sports and business. You might
want to consider training in sport management. This program will prepare you
to work in both worlds.
There are universities that offer educational programs specifically
in sport administration. An undergraduate program will take you three
to four years to complete. Some universities may also have one- to two-year
programs in sport management or administration. There are master's and doctoral
A number of colleges and technical schools also offer one-year certificates
and two-year associate's degree programs in sport administration or in related
areas such as recreation and leisure studies. These shorter programs tend
to be specialized. Students can study specific fields such as recreation leadership
Most sport management programs expose you to recreation, physical education,
marketing, finance, accounting and program planning.
Programs also generally include internships, which allow students
to gain on-the-job training.
William Stier is the coordinator of the sport management program at the
State University of New York at Brockport. He says students acquire the personal
and professional skills and attributes expected of business grads.
So what do you need to get into this kind of program? Good grades, hard
work and broad interests, says Stier. "Academic ability is important, but
so is the ability to work hard and be motivated," he says.
Classes in English, physical education and drama will improve your
communication and leadership skills.
Get involved in activities outside the classroom, too. Many schools encourage
students to gain non-credit experience. This may mean volunteering for
the YMCA or YWCA, or the campus recreation club.
Lucie Thibault is the coordinator of a leisure and sport management program.
She says internship and volunteer work experience are important in the eyes
"They're going to look for someone who can stand out," she says. "Often,
it's volunteer work that does it."
You don't need certification to become a sport manager, but it can help.
Employers are sometimes more likely to hire people with certification in CPR,
first aid, coaching or even lifeguarding.
In the U.S., the National Recreation and Parks Association certifies qualified
leisure professionals, leisure technicians, leisure provisional professionals,
playground inspectors and aquatic facilities operators.
Find out what's happening in the world of sports
North American Society for Sport Management - Sports Management Programs
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