Kaitlyn Lundy, Staff Writer
As of Feb. 21, North Greenville University’s Sports Management Degree was ranked number one in the country. There are more than 230 sports management programs offered nationally and NGU not only made the top 30, but took the top spot.
What sets NGU’s sports management department apart from other programs at other colleges is the faith integration as well as distinctive track selection. Following NGU in ranking are Winthrop University, University of Louisville, Wingate University, etc.
Sports Management is the largest degree program at NGU with around 200 students involved. There are three areas of emphasis: business, coaching and sport ministry. The sports ministry aspect is a major reason why NGU’s program stood out among the rest.
The faculty within the Sports Management Department spent five years, between 2010 and 2015, working to complete the accreditation process. This acknowledgement by the Commission on Sport Management Accreditation (COSMA), allowed the program to possess a higher level of standards that not only improved the quality of the program, but also boosted their chances within the ranking process.
Jeff Briggs, dean of the college, among others have a passion for this program and the opportunities it presents for students. Even though SportsManagementDegrees.com recognized the program’s success to such a high level, faculty members are actively seeking to better the program over time. The faculty members within the program are passionate about what they do and do it not only for the increased success of the program, but to also glorify God.
Briggs believes that through continued positive impact of the program, admissions will have a direct response creating increased program growth.
He said, “My hope as a program chair and as a dean of the college is that we can continue to promote our programs because we have something special.”
The criteria that was evaluated included student-teacher ratio, net-cost of enrollment, overall graduation rates, etc.
Students interested in the Sports Management degree can expect to participate in hands-on experiences to prepare them for their future professions. These include running sporting events on and off site, creating a PR plan for a sports organization, and interning during their last semester.
Students will complete a 12-credit hour internship consisting of 16 weeks essentially working full time for a sporting organization of their choosing during their last semester. These multitude of assignments and credits allow for networking opportunities along with resume building before graduation. Experience is one of the key aspects when entering into this particular field which is why the program is structured this way.
Through this program, students can pursue employment in companies such as Upward Sports, the Kroc Center, LifeWay Recreation, the Greenville Drive, Adidas, as well as various university athletic departments becoming coaches, athletic directors, sports administrators and more.
The Sports Management Department has a placement rate of 88 percent meaning that they are able to obtain a job in their desired profession quickly out of college. This program enables students to market themselves well and employers are able to see the value and difference they can bring to the table.