Choosing the right program can make a significant difference in your career in the sport industry. The rapid growth in grad sport level programs (both on-ground and on-line) offer a variety of options. Additionally, there is no accredited ranking system for graduate-level sport management programs, and publications and websites that have attempted to rank programs have combined a variety of types of grad programs.
If you are seeking an on-ground experience, there are important factors you should research and consider:
How long has the program been in existence? The older the program, the more alumni it will have in executive – and hiring – positions.
Is the program housed in a school or business or management? This ensures that the education you receive will be grounded in foundations of business.
What is the reputation of the program within the sport industry? The name of the program on your resume goes a long way toward opening doors.
How engaged are the alumni? A large and engaged alumni base results in quality mentorship, informational interview, and job interview opportunities.
How large is the full-time sport management faculty? A larger faculty ensures a broader and deeper expertise in specific disciplines within sport management and better opportunities to connect with faculty members who are experts in your field of interest.
How much access will I have to the alumni? Programs that can provide access to an on-line alumni database, and proactively encourage its use, are invaluable in building you to build your network.
How much emphasis does the program place on experiential learning? Those programs that offer a multitude of classes that supplement theory/lectures with “real-world” experiential learning projects ensure invaluable “hands-on” learning opportunities that can be leveraged on resumes and in interviews.
Where is the program located? Each student has an “ideal” part of the country where they would like to study, but programs that are closest in proximity to “the hub of the sports business” world provide increased opportunities for networking.