By SMDG Staff
This article was originally published in July 2018 and was updated in June of 2020.
Do you have a passion for sports and mind for business? Sport management professionals can be found in every aspect of sport including marketing, sales, finance, public relations, physical fitness, data science, and healthcare. Sport management is also a great field for entrepreneurs who want to run their own business as a freelance sport photographer or sports analyst. Other sport management professionals work in health clubs, healthcare settings, or rehabilitation facilities. Finding a bachelor’s degree program that can lead to a career in sport management can be overwhelming so we came up with this list of the 20 best bachelor’s degrees for future sport management professionals. While the possibilities are endless, this list should get you started in your search for the perfect career in sport management. Below are our choices for the 20 best bachelor’s degrees for sports managers and some outstanding programs offering these degrees.
#20 – Bachelor’s in Leisure Studies
Earning a bachelor’s degree in leisure studies is an excellent choice for future Sports Management professionals who want to manage or lead programs where people spend their free time. Leisure studies graduates can be found running summer camps, managing nature parks, or leading activities in long term care facilities. Bachelor’s degree programs in leisure studies typically offer concentrations in areas such as administration, HR, therapeutic recreation, tourism, or parks and recreation. Courses may include youth recreation, leadership, legal issues in recreation, program planning, and health and wellness. Most bachelor’s degree programs take four years to complete and require at least a high school diploma or GED. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), the field is expected to grow 9 percent from 2016-2026, which is as fast as average for all jobs. Increasing childhood obesity rates and the aging baby-boom generation will require more recreation workers to run programs for both young and old. In 2017, the median annual wage for recreation workers was $24,540, per the BLS. Certifications are available that will add value to this degree including the Certified Therapeutic Recreation Specialist certification through the National Council for Therapeutic Recreation Certification.
University of Southern Maine -BS in Recreation and Leisure Studies – Therapeutic Recreation Concentration
The Bachelor’s in Recreation and Leisure Studies from the University of Southern Maine features a unique concentration in therapeutic recreation. Recreational therapists work to promote independence and physical development of individuals with limitations. Graduates of this innovative program work as recreational therapists, activity coordinators, or recreation staff. Students who complete an approved internship experience may be eligible to sit for the National Council for Therapeutic Recreation Certification exam.
#19 – Bachelor’s Degree in Personal Fitness Training
The field of personal fitness training is rich with opportunity for future sports management professionals. Students with a bachelor’s degree in the field have the advanced knowledge and skills for positions like fitness educator, performance coach, exercise instructor, certified personal trainer, fitness club manager, and gym owner. Bachelor degree programs are available in both on-campus and online formats and take four years to complete. Core courses focus on areas like exercise science, fitness training, and nutrition. Students with management aspirations should choose courses in business, communications, and leadership. Internships are a valuable part of many programs, giving students the opportunity to work in new settings to gain the skills and experience needed for success after graduation. With the increasing focus on personal health, the demand for fitness trainers and instructors is expected to increase by 10 percent through 2026 according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. That amounts to over 54,800 job openings in the field, available to those with the right education and skill sets. Earning certifications such as the NASM certification will make graduates more marketable in their search for the perfect job.
Bryan University-Bachelor of Science Professional Fitness Training and Exercise Science
The Bachelor of Science in Professional Fitness Training and Exercise Science from Bryan University engages students with a passion for fitness. The program was designed , in part, by Personal Training Academy Global (PTA Global) and aligns with the competencies outlined by the National Academy of Sports Medicine (NASM).
Indiana University-Health Fitness Specialist Bachelor’s
The School of Public Health at Indiana University features a health fitness specialist bachelor’s that gives students the knowledge and power to change lives. Students are prepared for certification in accredited professional organization like the American College of Sports Medicine (ACSM), the American Council of Exercise (ACE), the National Academy of Sports Medicine (NASM), and the National Strength and Conditioning Associations (NSCA). Students will have a required internship working in the health, fitness, or wellness fields.
#18 – Bachelor’s Degree in Sport Management
Are you passionate about sports ad have the natural ability to lead others? A Bachelor’s in Sport Management might be the perfect degree choice. Top bachelor degree programs in sport management are available online or on-campus, making it easy for non-traditional students to earn their degree. Courses cover a variety of key sport management areas including sport sponsorship and promotions, facility management, administration, legal aspects, and ethics. Most programs require an internship experience which can be a great networking opportunity. Bachelor’s degree programs typically take four years to complete although part-time students can expect to take longer. The Bureau of Labor Statistics reports that the demand for entertainment and sports occupations is expected to grow by 10 percent through 2026, which is faster than the national average. Sport management careers can be found at almost every level of sport including amateur, recreational, collegiate, and professional.
Gonzaga University-B.Ed. in Sport Management
Gonzaga University features a sport management bachelor’s degree with an experienced based curriculum and small class size. Students benefit from extensive industry connections for both practicum and internship experiences. Graduates have found success working with professional sports teams, sport media organizations, universities, and parks and recreation departments.
Southern New Hampshire University-Online Bachelor of Science in Sport Management
Southern New Hampshire University features an online Bachelor’s in Sport Management that is both affordable and convenient. Students can earn their degree at their own pace, working through courses over eight-week terms. Faculty are experts in their field and have real-world experience.
#17 – Bachelor’s Degree in Athletic Training
Athletic trainers are health care experts who work as part of a team to provide therapeutic services to athletes in the form of preventative services, emergency care, diagnostics, intervention, and rehabilitation. To become an athletic trainer, individuals need to complete an accredited bachelor’s degree in athletic training and pass the Board of Certification Exam. Coursework typically covers clinical instruction in areas like taping and bracing, therapeutic modalities like rehab plans and healing injuries, strength condition practices, and orthopedic evaluation and assessment. Clinical experiences for these future sports management professionals are designed to provide students with hands on learning. Most athletic trainers work in settings such as schools, colleges, professional sports teams, or wellness centers. Athletic trainers also have the opportunity to work in a consultant role, managing their own business and clientele. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the demand for athletic trainers is expected to increase at a much faster than average rate of 23 percent through 2026. The typical entry level education required for this career is a bachelor’s degree, but will change to a master’s by 2022.
Grand Canyon University -Bachelor of Science in Athletic Training
The College of Nursing and Health Care Professions at Grand Canyon University features a 120 credit hour bachelor’s in athletic training accredited by the Commission on Accreditation of Athletic Training Education (CAATE). Students will be well prepared for the Board of Certification exam by completing coursework in kinesiology, exercise, human anatomy and physiology, and therapeutic techniques.
The University of Texas at Austin -Bachelor of Science in Athletic Training
The University of Texas at Austin features a Bachelor’s in Athletic Training leading to certification as an athletic trainer. Students complete coursework in kinesiology and clinical rotations as part of the curriculum. Admission to the program is competitive.
#16 – Bachelor’s Degree in Sport Marketing
Coming up with catchy slogans like “Just Do It” or launching a fitness brand created by Kate Hudson is no easy task, but these are challenges faced by sport marketing professionals on a regular basis. Sport marketing combines sport management with the principles of marketing to promote brand awareness, influence consumers, and promote events. Earning a bachelor’s degree in sport marketing usually takes four years, longer if attending part-time. Students can expect to take courses in marketing, sport management, and business. Some programs require a practicum or internship experience which is a great opportunity to gain valuable hands on experience. Marketing managers are in demand. The job outlook for advertising, promotions, and marketing managers is expected to increase by 10 percent through 2026. Earning a bachelor’s degree in sport marketing can open the door to jobs working with professional athletes, professional sports teams, advertising firms, clothing nd footwear companies, and sporting facilities.
Full Sail University -Bachelor of Science in Sports Marketing and Media
The Sports Marketing and Media bachelor’s degree program from Full Sail University teaches students the value of marketing in sport business. Students learn about intellectual property, consumer segmentation, targeted marketing, and consumer receptivity. This highly interactive program culminates with a hands on experience requiring students to create a targeted marketing campaign to develop and refine their skills.
Grace College -Bachelor’s in Sport Marketing
Grace College features a Bachelor’s in Sport Marketing that combines the principles of sport and sport management with the study of marketing. Future sports management professionals are actively engaged in hands-on learning with sport organizations to develop professional skills in demand by the industry. Coursework covers sport media, business law, sales, advertising, market research, and consumer behavior. Students complete nine credit hour of applied learning by completing practicum experiences in sport management.
#15 – Bachelor’s Degree in Sport Medicine
Sport medicine bachelor’s degree programs prepare students to prevent, treat, and manage both illnesses and injuries typically found in athletes. These hands on programs may include concentrations in areas like pre-physical therapy, pre-medicine, or pre-occupational therapy. Students can complete their Bachelor’s in Sport Medicine before moving on to master’s programs to become a physician assistant or occupational therapist. Students planning on a career in physical therapy or medicine can also benefit from a Bachelor’s in Sport Medicine to gain valuable clinical proficiencies and educational didactic needed for their field. Coursework and clinical training provides students with the critical thinking skills and abilities to make effective decisions regarding the health and wellness of athletes. Sport medicine professionals such as an exercise physiologist are in demand, with the BLS predicting a 13 percent growth through 2026. These positions typically require a bachelor’s degree, but many sport medicine degree holders continue their studies to earn master’s degrees in occupational therapy or become physician assistants. Sport medicine is a great choice for undergraduate majors planning to pursue a doctorate in medicine or physical therapy with the goals of working with athletes.
Mercyhurst University -Bachelor of Science degree in Sports Medicine
Mercyhurst University features a top Bachelor’s in Sports Medicine that can lead to a successful career in sport management. Students learn how to prevent, treat, and manage illnesses and injuries common to athletes. With small class size, students can feel confident they are getting valuable one on one attention from some of the best faculty in the country.
Pepperdine University -Bachelor’s in Sports Medicine
Seaver College at Pepperdine University features a both a Bachelor of Arts in Sports Medicine and a Bachelor of Science in Sports Medicine. The BA prepares students to work in the health/fitness industry or for graduate study in sport or exercise science. The BS program is for students who want to continue their studies to graduate school in health sciences including physical therapy, occupational therapy, or exercise and sport science. Students are encouraged to participate in research and volunteer work to strengthen their skill set
#14 – Bachelor’s Degree in Facility Management
According to the International Facilities Management Association, facilities management is an interdisciplinary practice that “considers the coordination of people, place, process, and technology.” Have you ever wondered who makes sure a stadium stays in compliance with all the local and federal regulations? That’s just one of the many responsibilities taken on by facility managers. Facility management is a valuable degree for future sports management professionals who want to take on the management of large health clubs, stadiums, ball parks, gymnasiums, or college athletic facilities. Earning a bachelor’s degree in facility management typically takes four years. While no experience is usually needed, an associates degree in architecture can be helpful. Coursework is usually offered in architecture, interior design, business, social sciences, and engineering. Programs are hands-on, requiring students to engage in projects and activities. According to the BLS, the demand for administrative services managers is expected to grow by 10th percent through 2026, which is faster than average. The IMFA reports that individuals with a Bachelor’s in Facility Management can expect to earn about $87,000/year. Earning a professional credential in facilities management including the Certified Facility Manager or the Facility Management Professional certification are important to getting hired by a reputable firm.
Wentworth Institute of Technology -Bachelor of Science in Facility Management
Wentworth Institute of Technology features a flexible Bachelor’s in Facility Management that can be completed online or on-campus. The curriculum is taught by industry experts and aligns with the recommendations set forth by the International Facilities Management Association. Students can transfer in up to 80 credits from previous educational or professional experience. whether online or on-campus, students have access to a variety of services including career counseling and technical support.
Temple University -Bachelor of Science in Facilities Management
Temple University features a four year bachelor’s degree in facilities management offered through the Tyler School of Art. Students complete two years of Architecture Foundation Studies and coursework offered in the Fox School of Business and Management. Study abroad opportunities to Rome or Japan are available.
#13 – Bachelor’s Degree in Sport Psychology
If the saying “sports are 90 percent mental and 10 percent physical” holds true, sport psychology is essential to the improvement of human performance. A Bachelor’s in Sport Psychology provides students with the broad understanding of the factors that influence behavior and performance. Programs offer courses in child, adolescent, and adult psychology as well as coaching and team building. Future Sports Management professionals learn how to reduce anxiety and improve performance through contemporary theories in psychology. Most programs can be completed in four years including an internship experience or senior project. Graduates are prepared to work as coaches, in rehabilitation facilities, healthcare, social services, or even performing arts. Many graduates use this degree as a stepping stone for graduate work in psychology. The demand for psychologists is expected to grow by 14 percent through 2026, or faster than average. While it takes a doctorate degree to become a psychologist, the knowledge and skills acquired through bachelor’s level programs provides students with the ability to work in a variety of areas including rehabilitation and social service. Students with management coursework or experience can advance to leadership positions, working in sport clinics, health clubs, recreation centers, or rehabilitation facilities.
National University -Bachelor’s in Sport Psychology
The Bachelor of Arts in Sort Psychology from National University prepares students for entry level coaching positions or graduate study in psychology. Classes include the social psychology of sport, exercise physiology, biomechanics of sport, and motor learning. The program is available online, making this a great choice for working professionals.
Grand Canyon University -Bachelor of Science in Psychology with an Emphasis in Performance and Sport Psychology
Grand Canyon University features a Bachelor’s in Psychology with an emphasis in Performance and Sport Psychology that can be completed online or on-campus. Students learn the factors influencing human performance and how to bring out the best in athletes from a variety of disciplines. Coursework covers personality, cognitive neuroscience, coaching, exercise psychology, and team building.
#12 – Bachelor’s Degree in Sport Nutrition
People everywhere, especially athletes, are looking to nutrition as a way to develop or enhance a healthy, active, lifestyle. Earning a Bachelor’s in Sport Nutrition provides students with the knowledge and training needed to work in research laboratories, health clubs, rehabilitation clinics, and nutrition and health food retail establishments. Students can expect to focus on the unique nutritional needs of athletes as well as athletic training, exercise science, and psychology. Most programs can be completed in four years of full time study and may include an internship to gain work experience. Graduates are prepared for the workforce or enter into master’s programs in pharmacy, athletic training, public health nutrition, or physicians assistant. As the pressure for athletes to perform at their best grows, more are turning to diet as a way to gain more energy, build more muscle, and boost brain power. According to the BLS, the demand for dietitians and nutritionists is expected to increase by 15 percent through 2026, which is must faster than most other occupations. The median pay for professionals with a bachelor’s degree is $59,410/year.
Weber State University -Bachelor’s in Nutrition Education-Sports Nutrition
The Department of Athletic Training and Nutrition from Weber State University features a Bachelor’s in Nutrition with a concentration in sport nutrition. Students study topics like anatomy, chemistry, physical education, athletic training, sports nutrition, diet therapy and human nutrition.
Mansfield University -Bachelor’s in Nutrition-Sports Nutrition
The sports nutrition bachelor’s degree from Mansfield University is a 120 credit hour program for students planning a career in sports or fitness. Students complete coursework in sports nutrition, nutrition research, community nutrition, and life cycle nutrition. Graduates are prepared to work as leaders in a variety of settings including wellness and fitness centers or for athletic teams.
#11 – Bachelor’s in Sports Communication
Sports communication professionals are needed in every area of sport from exercise gyms to video games to gambling. The need for communication professionals who understand sports and their specific audiences is growing as people are introduced to new sports and new ways of getting sport related information. Earning a bachelor’s degree in sports communication can teach students the skills needed to effectively communicate about sports and sport related issues using the correct terms and context. Specialized coursework may be offered in media research, sport culture, media writing, crisis communications and issues management, sports operations and logistics, and public speaking. Internship experiences provide students with valuable hands on training working with other communication professionals. Most programs take four years to complete. A bachelor’s degree in sports communication can help secure management and leadership positions and career advancement opportunities in a variety of settings including professional sports and talent agencies. Communication is an essential part of the sports industry and earning a bachelor’s specializing in sport communication can make you more competitive in the job market. Communication and media occupations are expected to grow by 6 percent through 2026 resulting in 43,200 new jobs according to the BLS.
The median annual wage is reported to be $56,340, which is higher than the median wage for other occupations.
Clemson University -Bachelor’s in Sports Communication
The sports communication program offered by Clemson University examines areas like social media, public relations, interpersonal communication, and organizational communication. Students create a customized plan of study to meet their professional goals. One of the biggest highlights of the program is the ability to network with industry professionals to begin building a professional network.
Webster University -Bachelor’s in Sports Communication
Webster University features a Bachelor’s in Sports Communication with a curriculum that prepares students to be well-rounded communication professionals. The courses are taught by professionals with experience in the field of sports communication. This 128 credit hour program includes the opportunity for students to complete a professional media internship experience.
#10 – Bachelor’s Degree in Sports Broadcasting
We rely on sports broadcasting professionals to share information about games and events in real-time when we don’t have the luxury of seeing an event in-person. Sport broadcasters need to communicate with audiences by telling a story of what’s happening on the field. Bachelor’s degree programs can provide students with the skills and training needed to effectively gather information, report, communicate through a variety of media. Coursework typically offered by bachelor’s degree programs in sports broadcasting include sports play-byplay, remote sports production, management, broadcast and cable programming, and audience research. Future sports management professionals should complete an internship experience working with other sports broadcasting professionals to get a better understanding of their role in film, television, and digital media. The BLS reports that median pay for reporters, correspondents, and broadcast news analysts is $40,910/year. Sports broadcasting is extremely competitive, so making the right connections is key to finding the perfect job. Sports broadcasters are found at the local, national, and international level as well as in a variety of media including online and over the radio, and on television.
Texas Christian University -Sports Broadcasting Program, BS/BA
The Department of Film, Television, and Digital Media at Texas Christian University features a Bachelor’s in Sports Broadcasting with coursework in sports broadcasting production, industry and analysis. Students learn how to do remote sports production, sports play-by-play, media marketing, management, and global sports media. An internship experience is required to gain industry experience.
Full Sail University -Sportscasting Bachelor of Science
Full Sail University features a Bachelor’s in Sportscasting developed in partnership with sportscasting icon Dan Patrick. Students gain valuable real-world experience in the industry that will help them in their career. Course highlights including vocal training for sportscasting, broadcast for advanced technology including virtual and augmented reality, and new media tools.
#9 – Bachelor’s Degree in Public Relations
Knowing what to share and how to share it with the public is a challenge faced by athletes, sports teams, and sport organizations. From personal conflicts and achievements to injuries and illnesses, public relations professionals play an essential role in sport. Earning a degree in public relations is good for future sports management professionals and can lead to a career working as a consultant or a leader in a PR firm representing the sport industry. Courses typically found in PR bachelor’s degree programs including social and legal foundations, strategic relations, effective writing, and business and economic foundations. Students should complete an internship or practicum experience to get a taste for what it is like working in a variety of PR settings. Taking on a minor in communications, marketing, or advertising can give students an edge over the competition when applying for a job after graduation. Most programs can be completed in four years of full-time study although part-time students will take longer. With a bachelor’s degree in public relations, students are able to work in a variety of different settings including professional sports, talent agencies, newspapers, television station and universities. The public relations industry is expected to grow 6 percent by the year 2026 according to the BLS. A bachelor’s degree in public relations can be a great asset for a sports minded individual planning a career in working closely with athletes, teams, and organizations who need to make sure information is presented in an accurate and informative manner.
The University of Texas at Austin -Bachelor of Science in Public Relations
The University of Texas at Austin features a Bachelor’s in Public Relations with a concentration in sports and entertainment. Students complete a variety of coursework in integrated communication for sports, the business of sports media, and special topics in sport media.
University of Southern California -Bachelor’s in Public Relations
The School for Communication and Journalism USC Annenberg features a bachelor’s degree in public relations among the best in the world. Small class size means students receive individualized attention from some of the best faculty in the industry. Students have access to nine different content creation courses including website development, shooting and editing video and publication design.
#8 – Bachelor’s Degree in Photography
It’s not an easy task to capture images that tell a story without saying a word. The need for highly skilled photographers in the sports industry is obvious and winning shots can go for thousands of dollars. Earning a bachelor’s degree in photography is good for future sports management professionals and can provide students the skills needed to be competitive in this industry. Students take coursework in digital imaging, studio photography, digital art, equipment use, and editing. The curriculum should be hands on so students get experience and perfect their technique. Most programs are two years past completion of general education requirements and pre-requisites. Students should try and get as much experience as possible taking pictures of various sports in different settings to get an understanding of the type of movement that photographs best for each sport.
Sport photographers can be freelance, managing their own business, or work for newspapers or sporting magazines. Some sport photographers work in advertising to capture and edit images to use for marketing campaigns or branding. The median pay rate for a photographer is $32,490 according to the BLS. While the BLS reports a 6 percent decline in jobs for photographers through 2026, this is largely due to the reduction in full-time photographers and the upswing of freelance photographers with the skills needed to provide quality images without the overhead.
William Woods University -Bachelor’s in Art Concentration in Photography
The bachelor’s in photography from William Woods University is a four year program teaching students advanced topics such as black and white photography, the creation of digital art, editing, lighting, and principles of photography. The art photography concentration is comprised of 21 credits of coursework designed to prepare students for a career as a professional photography.
American Academy of Art College -Bachelor of Fine Arts in Photography
The American Academy of Art College feature a Bachelor’s in Art with the concentration in photography. Students have the opportunity to explore the photography industry as well as gain skills in the darkroom, expose and process film, use a variety of cameras and learn editing techniques. Students develop and refine their collection of images and eventually create a dedicated website to showcase their work.
#7 – Bachelor’s Degree in Event Management
Managing a sporting event is no small task, so event management professionals are needed to make sure everything runs smoothly. Earning a Bachelor’s in Event Management is good for future sports management professionals by providing students with the skills and abilities needed to facilitate processes and make decisions to successfully manage everything from a local softball tournament to the Super Bowl. Coursework may cover areas like professional sport management, convention management, international exhibitions, and hospitality management. These four year programs include internship or practicum experiences that give students hands-on training. Graduates can find employment opportunities with sport organizations, colleges, event producers, consulting firms, and convention centers.
It truly takes a cohesive team of professionals to pull off large scale sporting events. The BLS reports that the job outlook for meeting, convention, and event planners is expected to grow by 11 percent through 2026, which is faster than average. Experienced sports event managers are an asset to any professional or collegiate sport team.
Johnson and Wales University -Bachelor of Science in Sports, Entertainment, and Event Management
Johnson and Wales University offers an online Bachelor’s in Sport, Entertainment, and Event Management that starts with a strong business foundation. The convenient format is ideal for working students. Faculty are experienced in the field and can offer guidance transferring theoretical concepts into actual practice. To be accepted into the program, students need to have at least two years of work experience.
The George Washington University -BBA in Sport, Event, and Hospitality Management-Sport Events, Organizations, Products, & Athletes
George Washington University features a Bachelor’s in Sport, Event, and Hospitality Management that prepares students manage and market sport events, organizations, products, and athletes. Coursework in event management includes sport and event business management, sport and event marketing, and convention and meeting management. An internship is required as part of the program to gain work
#6 – Bachelor’s in Sports Journalism
Sports journalism has come a long way from newspapers and television. Now people access information about sports from Twitter, YouTube, Facebook, and blogs. Earning a bachelor’s degree in sport journalism can teach students how to produce content through a variety of mediums and use and maintain social media and blogs to send and receive information. Students can usually earn their degree in four years and internship and professional experiences are highly encouraged through these programs. Coursework covers several different types of media including photography, journalism, and communications. Graduates find employment working as sports writers, reporters, and public relations professionals. Sport journalism is an incredibly competitive field. Graduates need to be familiar with all aspects of media including online, print, broadcast, photography, and mobile. Sport journalists often follow other sport journalists to check out the competition and stay current on the latest trends and techniques used to reach audiences. The Occupational Outlook Handbook from the BLS predicts 8 percent growth in the field through 2026. Journalists can usually work from anywhere they have access internet, making this a great field for students who like to be in the middle of the excitement.
Arizona State University -Bachelor’s in Sports Journalism
The sport journalism bachelor’s degree program from Walter Cronkite School of Journalism and Mass Communication at Arizona State University is a hands on program including both internship and professional experience in the field. This four year degree includes courses in sports writing, sports photography, sports strategic communications, and diversity in sport.
University of Florida -Bachelor’s in Social Media and Sports Journalism
The University of Florida features an innovative Bachelor’s in Social Media and Sports Journalism. The program teaches students the important connection between journalism and media in today’s sport world. The program is offered online, making this a great choice for working professionals.
#5 – Bachelor’s in Sports Media
Sports media is taking the world by storm as we expect real-time updates and highlights for everything from horse racing to football. Gone are the days of anxiously waiting until the 10 o’clock news to see the highlight reel or the next day to read the sports section of the newspaper. Sports media professionals need to be in the thick of things, sharing their observations with the world. To be successful, students can receive the training and education they need by completing a Bachelor’s in Sports Media. These programs provide students with the communication skills needed to develop content and the technical skills needed to share the information with fans. Concentrations may be available in areas like strategic communications, sports production, or multimedia journalism. Students should seek out programs with hands-on training and relevant coursework to make them more marketable in the field. Most students can earn their degree in about four years and programs can be found in both an online and traditional format. The field of media and communications is expected to grow by 6 percent according to the BLS. Popular positions available include announcers, bloggers, website content writers, and social media reporters. The median salary was $56,340 as of May 2017, which is significantly higher than the median average wage for other occupations.
Ithaca College -Bachelor’s in Sports Media
Ithaca College features a sports media bachelor’s degree program with experiential learning opportunities and courses designed for a career in sport media. Alumni often serve as student mentors, sharing their experience through mini-courses, lectures, and symposiums.
Oklahoma State University -Bachelor’s in Sports Media
The sport media bachelor’s degree program from Oklahoma State University provides students with the real-world experience needed to be successful in the industry. Faculty are experienced in sport media and provide students with the skills and training needed to be successful in any media outlet.
#4 – Bachelor’s in Sports Analytics
When it comes down to it, sports are about numbers. The final score, the number of touchdowns, yards, bases, errors, outs, hits, runs…the possibilities are endless. Earning a Bachelor’s in Sports Analytics can help make sense of those numbers, determine what is relevant, and improve the performance of both individuals and teams. Bachelor degree programs in sports analytics utilize the latest technology to model, simulate, and predict outcomes using huge data sets. Courses cover areas like economics, database management, finance, math, statistics, and price theory. Top programs include internship opportunities to gain field experience. Most Bachelor’s in Sport Analytics programs can be completed in four years of study but part-time students may take longer. To be successful, graduates need to have a good grasp of the game and understand the data being analyzed. Graduates can work as consultants, managing their own business, or for professional sports teams or organizations. The Bureau of Labor Statistics reports that the demand for mathematicians and statisticians is expected to grow by 33 percent through 2026, which is much faster than average. While many positions in government and engineering require a master’s degree, sport analysts can usually find employment after completion of a bachelor’s degree program and hands-on training.
Syracuse University -Bachelor’s in Sport Analytics
Syracuse University was the first in the country to offer a Bachelor’s in Sports Analytics. Courses in this top Bachelor’s in Sports Analytics cover the areas of statistics, sport management, and economics. Topics include price theory in sport, web scraping, sport economics, and sport data analysis. Students get engaged in field experiences and research to better understand the industry.
California Baptist University -Sports Analytics Bachelor of Science
The sports analytics bachelor’s degree program at California Baptist University is a four year program offering concentrations in sports performance analytics, quantitative sport business, and rehabilitative sports analytics. Upper level students work closely with the Lancers Athletics to determine which statistics need to be analyzed for their various teams.
#3 – Bachelor’s Degree in Coaching
Do you have what it takes to motivate players and teach them the skills needed to be successful in their sport? Earning a bachelor’s degree in coaching can provide you with the knowledge and skill set to find and train talented athletes. Programs may be accredited by the National Council for Accreditation of Coaching Education, an indicator of a quality coaching program. Coaches need to have a huge skill set in their toolbox including leadership, communication, pedagogy, logistics, business, psychology, and strength and conditioning. The best bachelor degree programs in coaching will offer classes that help students develop these skills. Most programs take four years to complete including an internship opportunity. To be successful in coaching, experience is key. Students should start earning certifications and gaining experience in the area they want to coach, making sure they know and understand the rules of the game. According to the BLS, coaches with a bachelor’s degree have a mean pay of $32,270/year. Coaches are found at every level of sport, from little league through the professional level and pay can vary dramatically by the amount of experience a coach has under their belt. Since many coaches have non-traditional hours (including weekends and evenings) many use coaching as a part-time position to boost income or spend time engaging in an activity they are passionate about.
Liberty University -Bachelor of Science in Coaching
The Bachelor’s in Coaching program from Liberty University is a residential program providing students with the instruction and training needed to coach a variety of different sports. Unique course offerings include coaching football, coaching dynamics, and sport psychology. Students can choose a minor in sport outreach or sport management to enhance their degree.
University of Southern Mississippi -Sport Coaching Education Bachelor of Science
The University of Southern Mississippi offers a Bachelor’s in Sport Coaching Education designed to prepare students to lead successful teams in a variety of different sports. Students choose between pursuing a dual degree with K-12 physical education licensure, a second major in a teacher education program, or a minor in a specific content area (referred to as Praxis II in Mississippi). Students receive 240 clock hours of hands-on training in an applied setting.
#2 – Bachelor’s Degree in Parks and Recreation Management
Earning a Bachelor’s in Parks and Recreation Management is an excellent choice for students who want to make a positive impact on their community. Parks and recreation professionals ensure that recreation opportunities are available to members of the community regardless of ability. Bachelor’s degree programs may be offered online or on-campus and take four years to complete. Many programs will offer an internship experience which is a great choice for students who need work experience in the field. Coursework may include recreation and tourism, outdoor adventure activities, leisure diversity and culture, natural resources, and special event programming. Some schools offer concentration areas in therapeutic recreation, natural resources recreation management, recreation management, or tourism and resort recreation. There are several certifications available through the National Recreation and Park Association including the Certified Park and Recreation Professional (CPRP), Certified Playground Safety Inspector (CPSI), Certified Park and Recreation Executive (CPRE) and the Aquatic Facility Operator (AFO) certification. Earning one of these credentials along with a Bachelor’s in Parks and Recreation Management can help launch a career in sport management while keeping close to home. Graduates with a bachelor’s degree in parks and recreation find employment in a variety of different areas including private resorts, municipal parks, travel agencies, federal land-management agencies, and community recreation centers. While many entry level positions in these areas require only a high school diploma or on the job training, management positions typically require a bachelor’s degree. The BLS reports the jobs in the field are expected to grow at a rate of 9 percent, which is as fast as average. While the median pay for recreation workers is $24,540/year, it is expected that management positions would pay more.
Northern Arizona University -Bachelor’s in Parks and Recreation Management
Northern Arizona University features a parks and recreation management program that holds COAPRT accreditation, giving students an edge over their competition in the job market. Graduates are prepared to work in a variety of careers with travel agencies, recreation planning companies, or national parks. The program includes an internship to gain valuable work experience.
Eastern Kentucky University -Bachelor of Science Degree in Recreation and Park Administration
Eastern Kentucky University features a Bachelor’s in Recreation and Park Administration with concentrations in recreation management and programming, natural resources recreation management, therapeutic recreation, and tourism and resort recreation. This 120 credit hour program features two fieldwork practicums to gain hands-on experience.
#1 – Bachelor’s Degree in Business Administration
Business is cut throat and the demand for business professionals who can navigate and understand the business landscape is high. Earning a bachelor’s degree in business can provide students with the technical skills and knowledge needed to rise to the top of their field. Students can take their degree and join the workforce or continue on to earn their MBA and further specialize in an area of interest. Coursework is commonly offered in business, marketing, finance, HR, ethics, law, and diversity. The best programs are highly competitive, so it is important to have good references and a solid GPA for any previous coursework completed. Internships are a valuable part of any good business program, giving students the change to showcase their skills and abilities in a professional work setting.
Business is a hugely popular college major, and one that is closely related to sport management. By earning a bachelor’s degree in business administration, students develop a solid foundation of sound business and management principles that will help them be successful in a variety of different sport management fields. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the median annual salary for those working in business and finance is $67,710/year. This industry is expected to experience 10 percent job growth by the year 2026.
University of California at Berkeley -Bachelor of Science in Business Administration
The HAAS School of Business at the University of California at Berkeley features a highly competitive BBA program designed for future business leaders. Students gain the knowledge and experience to tackle the modern business world. Coursework is integrated with the school’s liberal arts curriculum so students receive a well-rounded education.
University of Michigan -Bachelor of Business Administration
The Bachelor of Business Administration from the University of Michigan is ranked 3rd in the nation according to U.S. News and World Report. Students have the opportunity to engage in hands-on learning to develop their leadership abilities. The innovative MERGE curriculum (Multidisciplinary Exploration & Rigorous Guided Education) includes circular themes in areas like coaching and advising, leadership, positive business, and identity and diversity in organizations.
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