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Sports Management Degree Programs in Iowa

Despite being one of the smallest states in the Midwest, students will find multiple accredited sports management degree programs in Iowa. Designed specifically for students hoping to work with professional and amateur athletes later, these programs give students an inside view of the sports world and prepare them for working in schools, professional sports organizations and in dozens of other positions.


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Most programs have some type of internship components that allows students to work with local organizations and athletes, which gives them the experience that their future employers will look for later, and most programs give students some business and management experience too.

AIB

College of Business

The American Institute of Business, better known by its abbreviation AIB or AIB College of Business started in downtown Des Moines in 1921. The founders chose that location for its proximity to the local business district, and many of its early students either worked for local businesses or started their own companies in that same district. Big changes came to the campus in 2015, when the University of Iowa announced plans to take over the campus and turn it into one of its satellite schools. Once the partnership goes through, students will have the option of transferring to the head campus after one or two years of study.

Bachelor of Science in Sport & Event Management

AIB primarily focuses on developing strong business skills and talents in its students. Its Bachelor of Science in Sport & Event Management is a unique program designed for students who want to work in conference centers, stadiums and other professional organizations. As the school operates on a quarter schedule rather than a semester schedule, students attend four sessions every year with a short break between the start of each session. The school awards degrees to students who complete 198 quarter hours of work, which will include 72 quarter hours of core/general education classes, 90 quarter hours of sports and event management classes and several electives. Courses relating to their majors may include recreation and park management, sports and event marketing, catering management and legal liability. Students can also take an additional five courses to fulfill the requirements for an athletic coaching minor.

Accreditation

        • Higher Learning Commission of the North Central Association

Contact

2500 Fleur Dr.
Des Moines, IA 50321
(515) 244-4221

Buena Vista University

Harold Walter Siebens School of Business

The Presbyterian Church, which had a large following in Iowa, saw the need for a school that would instill in students the importance of faith as they studied at a higher level. After receiving donations from locals, the Church opened Buena Vista College in Storm Lake, Iowa. Though students originally met in a building downtown, it only took a year before the college moved to its own campus. After receiving accreditation in the 1950s, it officially became Buena Vista University. It now has a large rural campus that covers more than 60 acres and offer housing options for students living on campus.

Bachelor’s in Business in Sports Administration

The Bachelor’s in Business in Sports Administration program available from Buena Vista University requires that students take core classes in business, management and sports administration. As one of the top accredited sports management degree programs in Iowa, it provides students with a strong foundation in management and business operations. All students take 11 core business courses on economics, accounting, statistics, marketing and law. They also take three management courses that teach them how to better and more effectively manage and lead others. Those enrolling in the sports management track will need to take a course that introduces them to the fundamentals of sports management and then four other courses that cover topics like the marketing of sports and the social aspects of sports. Sports management students also have the opportunity to take one or more internships. They may work for local sports complexes or for professional teams across the country.

Accreditation

        • Higher Learning Commission of the North Central Association

Contact

610 W 4th St.
Storm Lake, IA 50588
(712) 749-2400
admissions@bvu.edu
http://www.bvu.edu/academics/business/business-major/

Clarke University

Accounting and Business Administration Department

St. Mary’s Female Academy opened in Iowa in 1843 as a small school dedicated to the education of young women. Operated by the Sisters of Charity of the Blessed Virgin Mary, the campus went through a number of changes over the years. It transitioned from a certificate/diploma academy to a degree granting college and later added more academic programs. It later adopted the name Clarke University in honor of Mother Mary Clarke who founded the college. Though the university began admitting male students in the late 1970s, it still remains small with a population of less than 1,200 students.

Bachelor of Arts in Sports Management

The Bachelor of Arts in Sports Management program at Clarke University is different from the other similar programs available in the state. This program has a knesiology requirement that gives students a better understanding of how the human body works and how injuries impact the body. All students must take six core kinesiology courses, including foundations of sports management, coaching and sports therapy and dynamics of health and nutrition. Students must also complete an internship in the field and complete a final capstone project worth three credit hours. The program also requires that students complete a minimum of 18 credit hours of core business courses that include business law, finance and financial accounting. Though the school requires that students take three kinesiology electives, they can opt for a second internship to fulfill one of those electives. Students can apply for internships they find on their own or apply for internships available through the department.

Accreditation

        • Higher Learning Commission of the North Central Association

Contact

1550 Clarke Dr.
Dubuque, IA 52001
(563) 588-6300
admissions@clarke.edu
http://www.clarke.edu/page.aspx?id=2456

Graceland University

CH Sandage School of Business

Graceland University can trace its roots back to the late 19th century. Parishioners of a local RDLS Church came together to raise funds for the establishment of a new college of higher learning. Those members also donated the land needed to form the new campus. Then known as Graceland College, it opened its doors just a few short months after receiving its first donation. Though the school received accreditation less than 20 years after opening, it only offered two year degrees and certificates until the 1960s. It now offers program that lets students transfer from local community colleges to earn degrees on campus.

B.A. in Sports Management

The B.A. in Sports Management is a program available at Graceland University that serves as an alternative to its traditional business program. This program requires that students complete the general education requirements mandated by the state, which include math, science and social science courses, but students can take those classes at the same time that they take their business and management courses. All students take 42 semester hours of core business classes on topics ranging from microeconomics to marketing. They also take courses on coaching and injuries associated with athletes. During one of their last years, students complete an internship that gives them three semester hours towards their degrees. This well rounded program covers topics that other programs do not, including ethical issues found in the sports world, the management of conference and event spaces and the psychology of coaching professional and amateur players and athletes.

Accreditation

        • Higher Learning Commission of the North Central Association

Contact

1 University Pl.
Lamoni, IA 50140
(641) 784-5000
admissions@graceland.edu

Loras College

Division of Business & Economics

When Loras College opened in 1839, it primarily focused as a seminary that trained and prepared future priests. Though its founder also wanted to help the surrounding community, most of its students studied for the priesthood. Seeing the need for additional programs, the college slowly added new certificate programs and brought it new teachers, which led to its population expanding. After losing some of its programs due to the Catholic Church severing ties with the school, it added its own graduate school. A few years later, the college also began admitting female students, which helped it reach a population above 1,500 students.

Sports Management B.A.

Several notable organizations across the country named the Sports Management B.A. program at Loras College as one of the best accredited sports management degree programs in Iowa and in the nation. Unlike other programs that rely heavily on classroom learning, this program encourages students to gain experience outside of their classes. Loras College offers a number of business, management and sports organizations designed for active students, and the program itself requires that students complete fieldwork. Students complete between 60 and 67 credit hours of required courses in the program and a minimum of 60 credit hours in general education requirements. Some of the courses that students take include sports and facility management, sport law and sport sponsorship. Loras College also offers a double major option that lets students take courses in business and similar topics and graduate with both a business degree and a sports management degree.

Accreditation

        • Higher Learning Commission of the North Central Association

Contact

1450 Alta Vista St.
Dubuque, IA 52001
(563) 588-7100
admission@loras.edu
http://loras.edu/SportManagement.aspx

Simpson College

The Sport Science and Health Education Department

Like many colleges throughout the state, Simpson College has ties to a local church. Matthew Simpson was a local reverend who gained fame after serving as the reverend following the death of Abraham Lincoln. He created a small college that would give students the chance to study advanced topics while still learning more about their faith. Its campus in Indianola covers more than 80 acres and offers ample things for students to see and do. U.S. News and World Report ranked the school on several of its lists, naming it one of the top 10 schools in the Midwest and as one of the most affordable schools in the country.

Sports Administration Major

Unlike other schools that offer sports management programs, the Sports Administration degree program at Simpson College better prepares students for working behind the scenes. Students develop the strong skills necessary for operating conference centers, event facilities and sports complexes. As part of their studies, students take two separate internships. The first internship is one they can take during their junior year or at the beginning of their senior years. The second internship is one that they take as part of their last years of study. This internship serves as part of a capstone project. Students must complete an in-depth project that shows what they learned in the internship they completed. The program also consists of a number of courses designed for future managers and leaders, including sports and fitness marketing, event and facility management and recreation and park program management.

Accreditation

        • Higher Learning Commission of the North Central Association

Contact

701 N C St.
Indianola, IA 50125
(515) 961-6251
sportsscience@simpson.edu
http://simpson.edu/sports-science-and-health-education/

University of Dubuque

Health, Wellness, and Sport Marketing and Management

Established in 1852, the University of Dubuque is a small private college located in the city of the same name with a population of less than 1,600 students. Known as UD among locals, it originally opened as a religious institution that prepared reverends and ministers for working in the Midwest. It didn’t take long before the college realized that local students needed a place close by where they could study as well, which led to the college shifting its focus from religious classes to courses covering a range of topics. The campus itself is famous for appearing in the hit film Field of Dreams.

B.S. Sports Marketing and Management

The University of Dubuque offers a B.S. Sports Marketing and Management that gives students an in-depth understanding of different topics associated with sports management. This program focuses both on management and marketing, which trains students on how to create advertising campaigns, work with sponsors and gain more customers. UD encourages its students to take part in intramural and school sponsored sports on campus. Many students join the hockey team or another team, and other students play sports as part of a dorm team. Students typically take four to five classes each semester and attend two semesters every year. The university recommends that students complete an internship at the beginning of their senior years and that they take electives during their last semesters. This gives them the chance to focus more on preparing for the future, writing their resumes and applying for jobs in the months leading up to graduation.

Accreditation

        • Higher Learning Commission of the North Central Association

Contact

2000 University Ave
Dubuque, IA 52001
(563) 589-3000
admissions@dbq.edu
http://www.dbq.edu/academics/officeofacademicaffairs/academicdepartments/healthwellnessandsportmarketingmanagement/

University of Iowa

With a population of more than 22,000 students, the University of Iowa ranks as the largest university in the state in terms of both public and private institutions of higher learning. The college received the designation of a Public Ivy school in the 1980s, which means that it offers students the same experiences they would find at a private Ivy League school, and it retains that designation today. Established in 1847, the campus opened less than two months after Iowa became a state, and it now boasts several museums devoted to the history of the state, college and surrounding areas.

College of Liberal Arts and Sciences

Bachelor of Science in Sport and Recreation Management

The Bachelor of Science in Sport and Recreation Management available through the University of Iowa is one of the most comprehensive programs of its type. Many of the professors working in the program plan field trips for students, which lets them visit professional teams across the state, local facilities and other locations to learn more about the sports field firsthand. Prior to enrolling in the program, students must take two biology courses and classes on chemistry, psychology and anatomy and score a passing grade in each class. Students will also take a CPR course that teaches them life saving techniques and allows them to get CPR certified. The sports management program itself consists of 53 semester hours of courses in physiology, anatomy and pharmacology. Courses on managing, constructing and operating sports facilities are also available. Students may also do one or more internships in lieu of taking some of the required courses needed for graduation.

Accreditation

        • Higher Learning Commission of the North Central Association

Contact

Iowa City, IA 52242
(319) 335-3500
clas@uiowa.edu
http://clas.uiowa.edu/?utm_source=Page%20Menu&utm_medium=CLAS&utm_campaign=UI%20Home%20Page

Upper Iowa University

Andres School of Education

Upper Iowa University saw its student population grow over the years thanks to its commitment to providing students with a safe and beautiful place to live. Established in 1857, the private college opened with just a few students and later saw many of its students and faculty members leaving to assist in the war effort during the Civil War. In more recent years, the campus hired professional landscapers and construction crews to add new buildings and features for students. It was also one of the first schools in the state to offer distance learning opportunities, which later became its online system.

Exercise and Sport Studies in Sport Administration

Students working in sports management positions need a deep understanding of the human body and what happens when the body suffers from injuries. They’ll learn about those topics and many more in the Exercise and Sport Studies in Sport Administration at Upper Iowa University. This program asks that students take courses on health and life sciences and exercise in addition to management classes. Students who graduated from the school now work for the Olympics, sports complexes, event and conference centers and in dozens of other fields. Students take 12 classes on exercise and sports studies, including kinesiology, sports nutrition, sports law and psychology, and they also take a course that lets them obtain CPR certification. Those choosing the sports administration track will need to take an additional 12 courses in this field, which includes a sports management or administration internship. Sports marketing, statistics and human resources are some of the required courses.

Accreditation

        • Higher Learning Commission of the North Central Association

Contact

605 Washington St.
Fayette, IA 52142
(563) 425-5200
info@uiu.edu

There is no time like the present for students to stop thinking about their futures and get moving towards their futures. Iowa is home to a number of schools that offer hundreds of degree types for students of all ages, and some students may find the accredited sports management degree programs in Iowa the most appealing.