Careers in the sports industry are exploding. Not as participants, necessarily, but in the ancillary jobs surrounding the field. But how does one discover what skills are needed to break into the sports industry?
New York University, through its Preston Robert Tisch Institute, and Yellowbrick, have begun an online course focused on global sports business that allows students to explore the multiple career paths now needed in the business of sports.
“Fundamentals of Global Sports Management” is a self-paced, six-part course.
“This is an online offering that has a 360-degree overview of the sports business for someone to explore and maybe go into a sports management program,” says Rob Kingyens, president/CEO of New York-based Yellowbrick. “Where does social media come into play? How does data come into play? Maybe they are a marketer, but how do they translate that into the sports industry? This helps them see where their natural skills lie.”
“We think it gives people a great overview of the sports industry,” says Vince Gennaro, associate dean of the Tisch Institute. “Technology is having a profound impact on the industry. Jobs exist that may not have existed just five years ago. With this course, students get a better idea of what is out there.”
Gennaro sees the course as not only for a new student but also for a professional who is thinking of a career switch.
“It’s designed for people who want to pursue sports management as a career,” he says. “It is also for young professionals in the field who want to understand the skills needed to move up the ladder, or those wanting a career shift.”
Professionals with a degree in finance might find transferrable skills into sports analytics, for example, he says.
“We’re starting to see an explosion in jobs in sports,” Gennaro says. “Sports analytics didn’t really exist 10 years ago. Now there are data scientists, sports IT people, all supporting sports. There is social media management, driving fans to sports. There is a lot going on in the field of sports for social impact—positively impacting social causes through sports.”
One important aspect of the online course for Kingyens was that it be open access.
“What I mean by that is it is online and self-paced,” he says. “You can be anywhere, any place and be able to learn. We also focused on diversity and inclusion, so our teachers are diverse. That’s our big focus to help overall change the dynamic of who is working in this industry.”
Both men expect the course can help students and professionals find their passion.
“I think you can say everyone wants to find a job they love that taps into the area they are passionate about and uses natural skills they have,” Kingyens says. “That’s how we approach all of our programs. There are millions of people who are passionate about sports and those who want to find a way to have a career in that. They just don't know how to connect their fandom with the field. Global sports management is changing. This is designed for someone to explore options before pursuing a job or advanced academic program and give them some guidance on what that next career path should be.”