Sports Management Degree Programs in West Virginia

Enrolling in one of the sports management degree programs in West Virginia will give you a unique understanding of recreation, sports and event management. You’ll learn how to operate facilities and sports complexes from the business side, including how to hire good workers, advertising upcoming events and working with both professional and amateur athletes. Some programs can even teach you how to manage the careers of athletes. Once you learn more about the programs available in your state, you can narrow down your search based on location, cost of tuition, the classes offered and even whether you can take classes online.


American Public University

School of Health Sciences

American Public University is a unique college because it primarily operates online. It opened in the early 1990s as a private university that catered to retired service men and women. Its founder noted that military veterans and current military members had a difficult time going to school and wanted to make life easier for them. APU offered correspondence courses that let those serving on bases around the world earn their degrees through work they did through the mail. The university later transitioned to a for-profit online college and now accepts students from a wide range of backgrounds and service levels.

Bachelor of Science in Sports Management

One of the online degrees now available is a bachelor’s program for sports management students. Designed for those who want to work as athletic coaches and trainers, it also prepares students for working as managers and leaders. American Public University has a strong reputation as a more affordable choice for college students because tuition costs several thousand less a year than it costs at comparable schools. Most students can complete the online application in 25 minutes or less, and the university will notify you of your response in weeks or less. Its undergrad sports management program focuses highly on the skills that trainers, coaches and other professionals need. While you’ll learn the basics of running a business and searching for jobs in the sports management world, you’ll also learn more about human anatomy and how the body works. Those skills can help you watch over athletes and keep them safe and healthy.

Master of Science in Sports Management

If you already have a bachelor’s degree in sports management or a related field, consider enrolling in the American Public University’s sports management graduate program. It includes advanced courses that pick up where your undergrad courses left off and help you build on the knowledge that you already have. You’ll take classes on health assessment and identifying the unique health needs of the athletes working under or with you and classes on diet and nutrition. Those classes can help you develop diet plans that help prepare athletes for marathons, other types of competitions and basic workouts. Though this is an online program, APU ensures that your professors work closely with you until you graduate. You can contact them over the phone or by email with questions you have. While most graduates of the program work in management and leadership positions, some work in academia and train the next generation of managers.


  • Higher Learning Commission


111 W. Congress Street

Charles Town, WV 25414

(877) 755-2787

Davis and Elkins College

Department of Sport Science

Students looking for a small college with a low ratio of professors to students might appreciate Davis & Elkins College. Established in 1904, its name pays honor to two former West Virginia Senators. The Presbyterian Church had a hand in its founding and still retains its affiliation with that college today. Fewer than 900 students take classes from D&E, but most classes feature just 16 students or less. Several of the buildings on campus date back to before the turn of the 20th century, and D&E has its own heritage center that helps students learn more about the region’s history and cultures.

Bachelor of Science in in Sport Science in Sport Management

The Bachelor of Science in in Sport Science in Sport Management available through D&E ranks as one of the best accredited sports management degree programs in West Virginia. This program focuses on several key areas of sport, including marketing, management, ethics, anatomy and physiology. The idea is that the more you know about the human body, the more you can handle issues that might arise on the job. It includes a fieldwork practicum that sends you to work in the field. You’ll spend a minimum of 40 hours in a single semester working under the supervision of trained professionals. D&E previously placed students in the local YMCA, in gyms and fitness centers, in sports stores and in athletic complexes. You also have the option of doing your practicum on-site with the college’s athletic department. Its graduates work in ticket sales, sports promotions, public relations and in event marketing companies.


  • Higher Learning Commission


100 Campus Drive

Elkins, W.Va. 26241

(304) 637-1900

Glenville State College

Department of Business

Citing the need for an institution of higher learning in the central portion of the West Virginia, the state decided to open a small school in Glenville. The college started out slowly, but eventually grew so large that the college had more students enrolled than there were people living in the surrounding town. That led to it switching from two-year programs to traditional four-year programs that gave graduates college degrees. It still offers strong the same strong teaching programs that it did during its early years, but the more than 1,000 enrolled students can also take courses on business and other subjects.

Bachelor of Science in Business Administration Sport Management

Glenville State University offers a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration Sport Management through its Department of Business. All students take a first year experience course that gives them an idea of what to expect during the full program and ensures that they can handle college. As with all bachelor’s programs, students take a minimum of 39 credits of general education courses, including math, computer science and life science classes. The program also includes 33 credits of business administration classes like principles of marketing, principles of microeconomics, principles of accounting and business law. Those classes give you a strong foundation in business concepts. You will then take 37 credits of sport management classes. Some of those courses may include sports marketing, sports law, strategic management and planning, resort area management and intramural sports. Though you must do one internship, you can also do others to count towards your electives.


  • Higher Learning Commission


200 High St.

Glenville, WV 26351

(800) 924-2010

Marshall University

College of Health Professions

Founded in 1837, Marshall University is one of the highest ranked colleges in the state. Many know the university for its motto, “We are Marshall” and for the film based on the university. It has one campus in Huntington and a second campus in South Charleston that primarily offers graduate classes. The university is also home to an active Greek system that includes 11 fraternities and seven sororities as well as dozens of other clubs that are open to all students. The population on its main campus includes more than 13,000 students at both the undergrad and graduate levels.

Bachelor of Science in Sports Management

Marshall University offers a Bachelor of Science in Sports Management with an emphasis on sports marketing. Students have numerous chances to gain additional experience outside of their classes too because of the college and intramural sports teams that play on campus. You can gain a better understanding of sports rules and methods of play as an athlete on the soccer, football or basketball team. Many students also attend home and away football games, and some have the opportunity to work with that team and others too. The program includes general education courses in writing, research, math, science and humanities as well as specialized courses in sports marketing and management. Those courses can include sports marketing, sports promotions, athletic training, kinesiology and physiology. Marshall also requires that undergrads do at least one internship. Some of the places you can work include with ESPN, the Charlotte Hornets, Disney Wide World of Sports or the university itself.

Master of Science in Sports Management and Marketing

The Master of Science in Sports Management and Marketing program at Marshall University can help you go further in your career and enhance your undergrad studies. The university gives you up to seven years after enrolling to finish your degree. If you do not finish in that time, you may need to re-enroll or even start the program over again. Marshall offers grad students the chance to do a thesis or research project, but you can also enroll in the non-thesis track. Those doing a project that involves human subjects must seek approval from the university before beginning. Some of the courses in the grad program include sports law, planning and developing an athletic complex, research methods in sports studies, marketing management and sports finance and economy. Marshall University also requires that all sports management grad students do at least one internship worth at least three credits.


  • Higher Learning Commission


One John Marshall Drive

Huntington, WV 25755

(304) 696-5034

Salem International University


Salem International University is a for-profit university in West Virginia. Though the Seventh Day Baptist Church helped found the college, it no longer has any religious affiliation. Established in 1888 as Salem College, it originally functioned as a liberal arts college but later added other programs to its curriculum. It now has one of best nursing programs and teaching programs in the state. After partnering with a college in Tokyo, it expanded its curriculum and welcomed overseas students. Though this partnership later ended, it now uses the name Salem International University to reflect its commitment to students of all types and backgrounds.

Business Administration Sports & Recreation Management

One of the two sports management degree programs available through SIU is its Business Administration Sports & Recreation Management. Students learn the basics of budgeting and running the daily operations of a sports facility as well as legal issues in the field and how to follow those laws. The program also shows students the way in which both amateur and professional sports organizations operate. All students must agree to enroll in the BSBA program, which awards them a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration degree, but they can then select a concentration in sports management. The five core sports management classes that you must take include legal aspects of sport, principles of sports management, event and facilities management, sports ethics and sports administration. SIU also encourages its BSBA students to do at least one internship, but you can do one during the fall or spring semester or in the summer.

MBA in Sports and Recreation Management

Earning a Master of Business Administration can help you increase your starting salary and later in life salary, and SIU is one of just a few colleges that offers an MBA in Sports and Recreation Management. This program provides you with all the benefits of a traditional MBA program with everything you need to know about sports management. Though it consists of 36 credits of work, the university designed the program for students to complete their studies in just 12 months. Seven of the classes you take are from the business core and include financial management, managerial economics, marketing management and accounting for managers. The remaining courses will come from the sports and recreation management field. You can take classes on special promotions, marketing for sports facilities, event management, recreation management and sports laws or ethics as well as doing one or more internships for course credit.


  • Higher Learning Commission


223 W. Main St.

Salem, WV 26426

(844) 471-9660

Shepherd University

School of Education and Professional Studies

West Virginia is home to a number of smaller college campuses like Shepherd University. Residents living in the small town of Shepherdstown called for the formation of a new college, which took over the former courthouse. The college offered basic arts and science classes, but that changed when the state established a new normal school in the area. Its new emphasis on teaching and education helped the college grow significantly during its early years. Formerly named Shepherd University in 2004, it now hosts a contemporary arts festival every year and is home to a study center devoted to the Civil War.

BS in Recreation and Leisure Studies in Sport and Event Management

One of the best accredited sports management degree programs in West Virginia might be the BS in Recreation and Leisure Studies in Sport and Event Management offered by Shepherd University. Also known as a comprehensive sports management program, it requires that students take at least one course from multiple disciplines, including athletic coaching and sports communications. Athletic coaching courses teach students how to work with kids and players of all ages and skill levels as well as the rules and regulations they must follow. The sports communications classes help students learn more about broadcasting and writing on sports subjects. They also take classes on sports marketing and promotions and courses on sport and event management. Before you can graduate, the university also requires that you sign up for a professional organization from within your specific field of study and that you attend at least one conference hosted by that organization.

MBA in Sport Management

Shepherd University offers an MBA in Sport Management program that includes 36 credits of work. Twenty-one of those credits will come from the business core, which features classes like leadership and ethics, managerial accounting and managerial economics. At least three credits will come from a capstone project and the research that you do on your project, but you can earn up to six credits for that work. Students also have the option of doing a smaller capstone and an internship for up to six credits too,. The remaining 15 credits will come from classes like event and facility management, sport management, sport marketing and sports law. Shepherd University also requires that sports management MBA students take three courses that include fieldwork component. Those courses cover subjects like working in the sports field within schools, working in international sports and training and working with athletes on the Olympic level.


  • Higher Learning Commission


301 N. King St.

Sheperdstown, WV 25443

(304) 876-5000

University of Charleston

School of Business and Leadership

The University of Charleston actually opened as a seminary school founded by the Southern Methodist Church. It taught courses for students interested in working for religious organizations. The college then moved to Charleston and began offering courses in art and music, which led to the end of its religious affiliation. Though it went through some financial issues and nearly closed, it bounced back, changed its name to the University of Charleston and added more courses that appealed to a more diverse group of students. More than 2,000 students now attend the University of Charleston every year.

Bachelor of Science in Sport Business

Students looking for accredited sports management degree programs in West Virginia might consider enrolling in the University of Charleston Bachelor of Science in Sport Business program. This program focuses more on the business side of sports than the management side. It strives to teach students how to think for themselves, better understand the laws and regulations associated with the sports industry and develop strong critical thinking skills. You can opt for a concentration in communications or management. Management students take three classes on event management, facilities management and operating a small business, while communications students take three courses on public speaking and general communications. You can also take a combination of courses from both concentrations. Other classes that you must take include sports marketing, business statistics, organizational behavior, principles of accounting and principles of microeconomics. The University of Charleston also offers a class on sports media that teaches you how to report sports in a neutral way.


  • Higher Learning Commission


2300 MacCorkle Ave SE

Charleston, WV 25304

(800) 995-4682

West Liberty University

Gary E. West College of Business

Though established in 1837, West Liberty University looked significantly different during those early years. Known as the West Liberty Academy, it offered a small number of classes and primarily functioned as a prep school. It then became the West Liberty State Normal School and offered teaching programs and classes. During the 1930s, it offered several programs in business and secretarial sciences, which later became the Gary E. West College of Business. That college, which is part of the university, ranks among the top business programs in the state. West Liberty University has just over 2,600 enrolled students today.

Bachelor of Science in Business Administration in Sport Management

West Liberty University now offers a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration in Sport Management. Also known as a BSBA degree in sports management, this program combines elements of sports, management, leadership and business into one program. It includes 48 credits of general education classes, 45 credits from within the business core and 23 credits of sports classes with several electives to reach a minimum of 20 credits. Students typically take many of the core business courses first to ensure they understand the materials covered in their later classes. Core business classes include introduction to business, principles of microeconomics, legal environment of business, principles of management and professional development. The sport management classes you take include sport finance, legal aspects of sports, sports management and physical education. West Liberty University also asks these students to do a capstone worth six credits that lets you work in the field in a sports complex or a similar company/organization.


  • Higher Learning Commission


208 University Drive, CUB 123

West Liberty, WV 26074

(304) 336-8053

West Virginia University

College of Physical Activity and Sport Sciences

Founded in 1867, West Virginia University is one of the state’s oldest colleges. Though it originally served as an agricultural college that offered practical classes and diploma or certificate programs that helped students work in farming and other similar fields, it later changed its focus to more general programs and added a number of other degree options. Located in Morgantown, the university has ample opportunities for students who want to do cooperative placement jobs and internships. West Virginia University is a public university that offers a number of degrees today and has an enrollment of nearly 30,000 students.

Bachelor’s Degree in Sport Management

The sports management program that awards students a bachelor’s degree combines elements of both management and leadership, but it also helps those students develop practical skills like critical thinking and decision making. It includes a series of foundation courses that tackle topics like sports marketing, business ethics and business communications. You’ll then take core professional courses that focus on some of the skills you’ll use in your own job. West Virginia University requires that undergrads do both a practicum and at least three internships. Those internships can give you up to 12 credits. The university works hard to place students in local sites, but you can also look for internships in the Washington, DC area or in your hometown. WVU will look at the work you do to determine the number of credits you receive. You can work for smaller teams, amateur leagues, sports complexes and even in the professional sports world.

Master of Science in Sport Management

West Virginia University also offers a Master of Science in Sport Management that is open to those with a bachelor’s in business administration, general business, sport management or a similar subject. Though the program requires that students take a minimum of 36 credits of classes, you can get six or more credits for an advanced internship that you do. As with its undergrad program, WVU lets you find an internship on your own or apply for those the university finds, and you have the option of working with amateurs or professionals. There is also a dual degree program available for those who want to earn an MBA. Many of the classes you take will fulfill the required classes needed for the other program. The professors working in this program have a combined decades of experience and will act as mentors to help guide your studies.


  • Higher Learning Commission


375 Birch St., P.O. Box 6116

Morgantown WV 26505

(304) 293-3295

Sports management is a career field that requires a strong head for business and a commitment to your coworkers and employees. You’ll learn those skills and others relating to the hiring and managing of employees in the top sports management degrees programs in West Virginia that accept students every year.

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