How to Get into Sport Management
Behind every game-winning run, double-clutch layup or unstoppable running play, there are the individuals who make it all possible without putting on a jersey. Sport management professionals contribute in roles that range from representing athletes in contract negotiations to overseeing facility maintenance and upgrades.
If you’re exploring how to get into sport management, first you need to establish a game plan:
- Identify the career path you want to pursue, accounting for factors like the availability of positions, average salary and work environment
- Research the skills and background you’ll need to achieve your goals
- Consider how a specialized education could open opportunities and enhance your earning potential
- Explore what organizations in your area offer internships
- Establish a professional network
With clear objectives and the right preparation, you’ll be ready to build a successful career behind the scenes of amazing athletic performances.
Finding Your Career in Sports
Sport management professionals may find employment by working for a professional team, college athletic program, governing body, athletic facility, agency or a variety of other organizations. Depending on your prior experience and areas of interest, there are many roles that could be a good fit for you, such as:
- Marketing Coordinator: Develop and execute sports marketing strategies to promote a team or league, managing advertising campaigns and monitoring budgets
- Financial Analyst: Prepare forecasts and analyze budgets to guide decision-makers as they work to strengthen and grow an organization
- Facility Operations Manager: Keep fields or arenas running smoothly, supervising all construction and maintenance activities
- Corporate Partnership Manager: Nurture an organization’s relationships with other businesses, generating advertising revenue and forming long-term connections
- Event Coordinator: Oversee the events that take place at sports facilities, from all-star games to trade shows
- Director of Athletics: Take responsibility for a school athletic program, including hiring and supervising coaches, preparing budgets, coordinating schedules and maintaining compliance with conference rules
Gain Experience from a Sport Management Internship
When you’re seeking what you can do with a sport management degree, real-world experience is a huge advantage. That’s why internships might be vital to getting your start. In a survey of 2,000 senior professional and college sports industry executives conducted by the Sport Business Journal, 74 percent said that internships were their top priority when evaluating entry-level job candidates on paper.
During an internship, you’ll apply the skills you’ve learned to handle the day-to-day challenges of a sports organization. Interns observe seasoned professionals in action, become more effective team players, and expand their networks. In some cases, exceptional performance as an intern can even lead directly to a job offer.
As you look for a sport management internship, reach out directly to local organizations as well as searching job posting sites. Try contacting sports leagues or associations, professional teams, university athletic departments, private clubs, and community athletic centers to see whether they would be interested in taking you on as an intern.
Network with Professionals
The sports industry can be a small world. Forming productive connections with professionals is often a highly effective means of progressing toward your career plans. One of the best ways to get in touch with experienced people who can offer advice and assistance is through your school. Instructors, career center staff, and alumni who work in the field may be able to point you in the right direction and advise you on the next steps.
Share your cover letter, resume, and social media profiles with these experts. By gathering their input, you’ll be able to hone your materials to highlight your qualifications and demonstrate your engagement within sport management. Concise, powerful documents can make all the difference when you’re trying to capture the attention of a potential employer.
You can spot chances to progress your career by staying active in a professional community. Attending conferences, joining organizations, and posting in groups on social media allow you to stay up to date with the latest industry developments and find promising employment opportunities. A faculty advisor or career coach can help you find the appropriate events and organizations for your interests.
About UF’s Online M.S. in Sport Management
The online Master of Science in Sport Management from University of Florida readies professionals to take on complex financial and administrative challenges in the world of sports. The comprehensive sport management curriculum can help you develop the leadership abilities and administrative proficiency necessary to advance your career. Students can customize their education by taking electives in their areas of interest or choosing between optional specializations in:
Athlete Development readies graduates to counsel players on striking a healthy balance between their physical performance and mental and financial well-being in positions like athletic director or director of player engagement.
High Performance Coaching is intended for students who wish to pursue positions in managerial coaching or athletic administration, showing them how to foster the best performances in athletes.
Sport Law teaches lawyers and administrators about legal principles that can have important applications in the world of athletics, including insurance, real estate finance, insurance, and fair competition.
To learn more about the University of Florida’s online masters in sport management and download a free brochure, fill out the fields below. You can also call (877) 665-3860 to speak to one of our Academic Assistants about the program.
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