Sport management focusing on the business of sports.
The Sport and Entertainment industry is an over $500-billion business. Today’s student will become tomorrow’s leader, and this new leader will require a skill set indicative of a changing global economy. Gain a broad understanding of management, marketing, administration, finance, entrepreneurship, and accounting, and how they relate directly to the sports industry.
This combination of experienced faculty, small class sizes, student-centered focus and global cultural competencies, makes the BBA in Sport Management a tremendous asset!
With such a busy schedule, my professors and advisor have helped me become super organized and develop great time management skills. I have such a close relationship with all of them (the small class sizes make this easy!). They realize my potential even when I don’t, and they have taken me to multiple conferences in different states, so that I can network with others in the Sport Management field. I wish more women would switch over to the Sport Management program though; it really is an awesome field.”
Kelani Bailey | Sport Management | Sport Business Club General Manager | Field Hockey Player, ’16
The Byrd School Of Business offers Business Administration students the opportunity to concentrate in one or more areas of business. Combine core courses in the business disciplines with electives that will customize your program of study for a Concentration in Sport Management.
With a Bachelor of Business Administration you can specialize in Accounting, Economics and Finance, Entrepreneurship, Health Care Management, Information Systems and Technologies, Management, Marketing, and Sport Management.
Garrett Wooddell at the NFL Players Association
Garrett Wooddell ’15 says attending Shenandoah was the best decision of his life. The business graduate used not only his education, but also his connections to his advisors, the advice provided by the university’s career services office, and his experience as an athlete to pursue a sports business career. He’s currently living out his aspirations through his work at the NFL Players Association.
Learn More About This Program
Our program is accredited by the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business. AACSB International accreditation is the hallmark of excellence in management and business education. It represents the highest standard of achievement for business schools worldwide, and it recognizes that the Harry F. Byrd, Jr. School of Business offers high-quality business programs. Processes are in place to ensure continuous improvement in the future. Therefore students and alumni can be proud of earning a degree from an institution that has taken its place among other world-wide leaders in business education.
Originally I started off as a Business Administration Major, unsure of the direction I wanted to go just like most of my fellow millennial generation. Sports has pretty much consumed my whole life. I’ve been an athlete for as far as I can remember and I loved the idea of working for a sports organization or even my favorite apparel brand. My sophomore year at Shenandoah I took Intro to Kinesiology with Dr. Wigley and immediately decided to major in Sport Management.
David Wilburn | Sport Management, ’15
Internships are required for this program and allow students to gain valuable experience while enhancing necessary skill sets.
I was blessed with the opportunity to intern for Russ Potts and Zach Franz at Russ Potts Productions Inc. Over the past 40 years Russ Potts Productions, Inc., has been at the forefront of Sports Marketing. They have created, promoted, and marketed events some of the largest sporting events on every level ranging from MLB, NCAA Football, NFL, NBA, and NCAA Basketball. During my internship I participated in the development and implementation of marketing, sponsorship initiatives, including customized programs/promotions, and provide support to major events.
David Wilburn | Sport Management, ’15
The Career Services staff helps Shenandoah students search and apply for internships related to their major and career goals. Internships differentiate you as an applicant in your future job searches, provide hands on experience in your field, allow you to sample different career paths for your major, and help you find a specific position that fits your passion before graduation.
Career and Salary Possibilities
Career and Salary Examples for Sport Management Majors:
- Account Executive: $27,000
- General/Operations Manager: $50,000
- Marketing Coordinator: $35,000
- Retail Store Manager: $43,000
- Sales and Marketing Coordinator: $38,750
- Athletic Director: $45,500
- Inside Sales Manager: $39,000
As an account executive in premium sales for the Houston Astros, my job is to fill stadium suites at every home game, which means doing a lot of cold calls and facing adversity, just as I did on the Shenandoah Hornets baseball team and in my business classes. It’s challenging to sell suites worth thousands of dollars but my education at the Harry F. Byrd, Jr. School of Business groomed me to face different challenges head-on.”
Greg Van Sickler | Business Administration | Three-time All-America Baseball Player, ’11
The Career Services Office provides a comprehensive range of services and resources to assist Shenandoah students in their career search. Services offered include resume and cover letter building, mock interviews, and professional dining etiquette workshops.
The Sport Management program housed in the state-of-the-art Harry F. Byrd, Jr. School of Business is meeting these challenges. Operating under the mandate of bringing theoretical constructs to practical application, students engage in living classroom laboratories with unique learning opportunities. While working with small student teacher ratios, students engage in critical thinking exercises, formal & informal learning styles while integrating elements of marketing, sales, sponsorship, traditional media, social media, facilities, event management, revenue generation & development, finance, accounting, and entrepreneurship.
The Bachelor of Business Administration degree requires students to complete 30 credit hours of general education coursework, 42 credit hours of business-specific coursework and 21 credit hours. In addition, students are also required to complete 24 credit hours of business elective course work. These credit hours can be applied to one or more of the following concentrations:
- Accounting Concentration
- Economics and Finance Concentration
- Entrepreneurship Concentration
- Health Care Management Concentration
- Information Systems and Technologies Concentration
- Management Concentration
- Marketing Concentration
- Sport Management Concentration
Students complete the same initial requirements that those in the general BBA program do as listed below:
- General Education – 30 credit hours
- Non-Business Electives – 24 credit hours
- Business Core – 42 credit hours
In addition, students majoring in Sport Management are required to complete the following courses:
Introduction to Sport Management
Contemporary Issues in Sport Management
Sport Management Pre-Internship Seminar
Management of Sport Organizations (Capstone)
Business Internship (Sport Management Focus)
In addition, Sport Management majors will choose a minimum of 9 credit hours (3 courses) from the following options:
Global Aspects of Sport
Sport and the Media
Sport Governance & Policy
Sport Consumer Behavior
Sport Marketing, Sponsorship & Promotion
Sport Facility Planning & Event Management
Learning support services are available to all students in every course at Shenandoah. Free peer tutoring with a student who has previously succeeded in the course is available for any course across the university. The Writing Center is available for every stage of the writing process from thesis development to proofreading and bibliography assistance. The Math Enrichment Center is available for math and science assistance. Professors and Academic Advisors across the university also have office hours and open door policies to ensure Shenandoah students succeed academically.
Hands-On Sports Management Experiences
2017 College Football Playoff (CFP) National Championship Game | Tampa, Florida
While the top two teams in college football – University of Alabama and Clemson University – battled for the championship (Clemson beat Alabama, 35-31), the students, who are all members of the SBC, worked with and learned from the organizers of this event, which has, in the past, drawn more than 75,000 attendees and 23 million TV viewers.
Over the course of their time in Tampa, the group worked several events in the days leading up to the game, as well as during the game itself, which is was on Monday, Jan. 9, at Raymond James Stadium. The students worked directly with representatives from the Tampa Bay Sports Commission. The students were able to gain media operations skills and throughout their time working with CFP officials. The Shenandoah University students were a key component for helping media officials run the event smoothly.
I learned that I go to a small school and there are lots of people who are out there doing the same thing I want to do. You have to work hard in the field and you don’t realize that until you go to a major event like this one. There was something about witnessing history that is cool.”
Laura Pearson | Sport Management ’19
2017 Harlem Globetrotters Event | Baltimore, Maryland
Four students from the Harry F. Byrd, Jr. School of Business and the Sport Business Club (Michael Nguyen, Jared Lowry, Isaac Schrantz and Steven Pironti) and Assistant Dean of Student Affairs and Associate Professor of Sport Management Fritz Polite, Ph.D., traveled to Royal Farms Arena in Baltimore, Maryland, on Dec. 9, for a uniquely up-close view of the Harlem Globetrotters‘ operation. The group met with the famed exhibition team’s tour manager and coach, as well as Globetrotter players, and other arena staff members and officials. The students saw, first-hand, the processes involved in putting on a major entertainment event. Following the game, the Shenandoah group stood on the court while players signed autographs for the fans. The students gained great insight into how a company develops and maintains a brand over an extended period of time, and learned about strategies for continued success, which they can apply in their own future careers.
2018 College Football Playoff Championship Game | Atlanta, Georgia
Nine business students, who are also members of the Sport Business Club, worked directly with representatives from the Atlanta Football Host Committee at the 2018 College Football Playoff National Championship game, which saw the Alabama Crimson Tide beat the Georgia Bulldogs, 26-23, in overtime, on January 8, 2018. Byrd School Assistant Dean of Student Affairs Fritz Polite, Ph.D., organized the weeklong trip and accompanied the students. The students gained sport management experience by observing and learning from professionals while performing tasks related to media credentialing, hospitality and fan experience, as well as additional tasks at Playoff Fan Central, Taste of the Championship, and the VIP section of Playoff Playlist Live on the day of the championship game. During Media Day they had the opportunity to interact with players, coaches and television personalities from ESPN, SEC Network, NBC and FOX Sports.
I learned so much this week, and after seeing everything first hand, I know this is exactly what I want to do for the rest of my life. I’m proud of the work I did, and I hope that I protected the brand!”
Jared Lowry | Sport Management Major ’20
2018 Olympic/Paralympic Winter Games | PyeongChang, South Korea
Shenandoah University, in conjunction with the Korean Olympic Committee, volunteered in the operations and execution of the 2018 Olympic/Paralympic Winter Games in PyeongChang, South Korea. Sport Management students saw the Winter Olympics in a unique way that most people will never get to experience and gained valuable knowledge of a major international sporting event. Lessons such as event planning, event management, cultural understanding, marketing, and more were taught to the students through class discussions and this intimate first hand experience. The group worked at the Alpensia Biathlon Center in various roles.
Not only will students be participating in one of the greatest international events, but they’ll also be working alongside volunteers from all over the world. After spending nearly one month away from campus, living among an international community and managing their course work at a distance during these four weeks, students will be prepared for almost any work situation or challenge after they graduate!”
—Fritz Polite | Trip Leader, Sport Management Professor, Assistant Dean of Student Affairs
2019 College Football Playoff National Championship | San Jose, California
Students will gain sport management experience by observing and learning from professionals while performing tasks related to media credentialing, hospitality and fan experience, as well as additional tasks at Playoff Fan Central, Taste of the Championship, and the VIP section of Playoff Playlist Live on the day of the championship game.
2019 Super Bowl | Atlanta, Georgia
Students will support the Super Bowl host committee and likely provide quality control services for events. Dr. Fritz Polite has worked 10 Super Bowls over the years, and taken more than 120 student from three different universities to work and learn at the National Football League’s yearly marquee event.
2019 Mens Final Four | Atlanta, Georgia
Students will provide support services for men’s college basketball’s biggest game.
2020 Olympic Summer Games | Tokyo, Japan
Shenandoah students will provide support services at the games, meaning that some students could potentially work two Olympics before graduation.
There’s a special bond between Byrd School of Business students and their professors. Students enjoy close professional relationships with academically and professionally experienced faculty who mentor them in and out of the classroom. This remains a hallmark of a Shenandoah University business education. Students also benefit from our executive-in-residence who works with both professors and students to broaden the student’s focus beyond the classroom.
Associate Professor of Sport ManagementFull Biography
Professor of Sport ManagementFull Biography
Assistant Dean of Student AffairsFull Biography
Shenandoah University works on rolling admissions and accepts applications throughout the year. Applications are reviewed individually and holistically.
Submit your application, review required admissions materials, and find our admissions standards.
Fast-Track To Your MBA
4 + 1 Option
Students enrolled in Shenandoah’s four-year Bachelor of Business Administration (BBA) program can take advantage of the new 4 + 1 option to earn an MBA with one additional year of classes.
2 + 2 + 1 Option
Transfer students with two years of college credits can take advantage of the 2 + 2 + 1 option that allows them to transition from an associate of arts degree in business degree to the BBA degree and subsequently to the MBA degree — all in five years.
Make studying abroad the highlight of your college experience! Whether you go for a year, a semester, or just a few weeks. You will never forget learning in another culture! The Center for International Programs is here to help you plan your study abroad experience. Start your planning early to ensure the courses you complete abroad count toward your degree and you graduate on time.
Global Experiential Learning (GEL) Program
The Global Experiential Learning (GEL) Program offers Shenandoah students a short-term, faculty-led, study-abroad experience for academic credit. These short-term, credit-bearing, faculty-led programs are offered winter break, spring break, and during the summer. If a course is not within your major, it might be used as an elective.
Shenandoah University is a member of the International Student Exchange Program (ISEP), a global network of 300 universities. This partnership allows students to study for a full semester or year at other member campuses abroad. By working closely with their academic advisors and the study abroad advisor, students can take classes taught in English abroad while receiving Shenandoah credit.
Shenandoah University also maintains direct partnerships with several universities around the world. These relationships allow students from SU to study abroad as exchange students and students from these universities to study at SU. All partner universities offer courses taught in English.
Business students looking to study abroad should consider studying at Audencia. Located in the city of Nantes, France, 2 hours from Paris, Audencia is an AACSB accredited university that specializes in courses in Business and Mass Communications.
Short Term Exchange Program
The January Business exchange program with SU partner university Audencia in France provides an experience of a lifetime while completing undergraduate or graduate credit hours. Through coursework, city tours, and company visits, you will have the opportunity to strengthen your knowledge and understanding of European management practices and the European market. All courses are taught in English.
I was selected for the GCP trip to South Korea, an all-expense paid trip over spring break offered by SU! I also went to Brazil on a GEL trip, a 10-day trip for 3 credits toward my major. I would never have had these opportunities if it were not for this school.”
Kelani Bailey | Sport Management | Sport Business Club General Manager | Field Hockey Player, ’16