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Sport Management

Sport Management


The Sport Management program at Western Carolina University offers you the opportunity to pursue a sport-related career by giving you the business know-how you need to succeed in the industry.

We offer a major in sport management as well as a minor that complements other degrees from the College of Business and allows you to gain real-life experience in staging and participating in events. See the graduate school page for information about our Master of Sport Management (MSSM) degree.

What can you do with a degree in sport management? Career opportunities include athletic administration, event and facility management/marketing and sports media. 

The B.S.B.A. in Sport Management requires 120 total hours: 42 Liberal Studies hours, 36 Business Core hours, 33 major hours and 9-15 general elective hours, depending on Liberal Studies courses completed. Students may select various interest areas (e.g., digital marketing, sales management, general marketing) by carefully choosing their electives in consultation with their academic adviser.

Major Requirements
21 Hours in the Major
Liberal Studies: 42 hours
Liberal Studies Program Requirements
Business Core
Business Core Requirements

Minor Requirements
Students who wish to receive a Minor in Sport Management must complete 18 hours of study.

Students who wish to finish their Sport Management degree in eight semesters can follow a prescribed program of study:

For a B.S.B.A in Sport Management

For dual degrees in Sport Management and Marketing

A degree in sport management will prepare you, the student, for jobs in six main career fields:

  • Professional Sport Management
  • Event and Facility Management and Marketing
  • Exercise Science and Fitness Management
  • Sporting Goods Management and Sales
  • Sports Media
  • Athletic Administration

Professional Sport Management

Including jobs in marketing and promotions, concessions, sales, ticket management, telemarketing, public relations, security, facility management, and law.


  • Professional sport organizations
  • National amateur sport governing bodies
  • United States Olympic Training Center
  • Sport marketing/event management firms
  • College athletic departments


  • Volunteer to market/promote Sport Management Association (SMA)
  • Complete an apprenticeship at souvenir stand during football season with SMA
  • Work on-campus in ticketing through athletic department
  • Attend state, regional, and national conferences.
  • Get a summer job with a professional sport organization
  • Work with the Catamount Club


Event and Facility Management and Marketing

Including jobs in special events, telemarketing, retailing, concessions, marketing/promotions, and campus recreation.


  • Professional sport organizations
  • Event management firms
  • County or municipal facilities
  • Parks and recreation departments
  • College athletic departments
  • Sport marketing firms
  • Private corporations


  • Work at Ramsey Center in desired field
  • Complete an apprenticeship at souvenir stand during football season * Volunteer to market/promote SMA
  • Attend state, regional, and national conferences.
  • Get pool operator's certification
  • Get a summer job working at any facility
  • Work with LMP events
  • Work with the Catamount Club


Exercise Science and Fitness Management

Including jobs in strength and conditioning, research, and cardiac rehabilitation or as a fitness instructor or personal trainer.


  • Corporate Fitness Facilities
  • Health Club/Wellness Centers
  • College Athletic Departments
  • Hospitals
  • Campus Recreation Department
  • Physical Therapy Clinics


  • Plan on attending graduate school
  • Work in on-campus cardiac rehabilitation program
  • Obtain summer and volunteer positions in Health Clubs
  • Work with sport teams conditioning programs
  • Attend trade shows
  • Become certified aerobic instructor
  • Subscribe to industry journals
  • Join professional association
  • Attend state, regional, and national conferences
  • Work in student fitness center


Sporting Goods Management and Sales

Including jobs in retailing, telemarketing, and manufacturer's representative.


  • Sporting Goods/Retail Stores
  • Manufacturing
  • Private Rep Firms
  • Professional Sport Teams
  • College Athletic Departments


  • Obtain summer jobs in sales area
  • Complete independent study in product knowledge
  • Attend Sporting Goods Super Show in Atlanta
  • Attend state, regional, and national conferences
  • Work in souvenir/concessions stands
  • Work with an organization selling signage, program ads, and group sales.

Sports Media

Including jobs in sports information, public relations, promotions, advertising sales, marketing, sports statistics, and sport history.


  • Local television, newspapers, and trade newspapers
  • Sport media outlets
  • College athletic departments
  • Professional sports teams
  • National governing bodies
  • Private promotion firms


  • Work with campus media outlets
  • Volunteer in college sports information
  • Obtain summer jobs with minor league teams
  • Complete apprenticeship
  • Volunteer to write sport management student/alumni newsletter
  • Attend state, regional, and national conferences
  • Study famous sports broadcasters
  • Develop a portfolio of work to share including audiotapes, video tapes, press releases, and writing samples.

Athletic Administration

Including jobs in marketing/promotions/sales, ticket management, concessions, fundraising, academic counseling, compliance, and sports information or as an operations/events manager.


  • College athletic departments
  • Amateur sport organizations
  • High school athletic departments
  • Sport governing bodies
  • Sport league conference offices
  • Event management firms
  • United States Olympic Training Center


  • Secure part-time summer job in concessions on campus or for local sports team or facilities * Work with Sport Management Association (SMA) events
  • Work with athletic booster clubs
  • Complete on-campus apprenticeship in desired area
  • Volunteer in athletic department in any capacity
  • Work with LMP
  • Secure part-time job in Ramsey Center as usher, in ticketing, or in event operations.
  • Subscribe to "NCAA News"
  • Attend state, regional, and national conferences.

There are numerous internship opportunities for students. In some cases internships are established through a faculty member in the student's major. Oftentimes students find part-time jobs in an area related to their field of study. When this happens, students should discuss with their academic advisor the possibility of receiving college credit. Generally, three hours of general elective credit can be earned for a minimum of 200 hours of experience.


  • Three (possibly more) hours of course credit which counts as a general elective towards your degree
  • Compensation
  • Relevant entry-level experience
  • Ability to make a more informed career decision and to be ahead of peers who do not have experience in the field
  • Future contacts and references/networking opportunities

How to Apply and Prepare

  • Visit WCU Career Services and obtain information about resumes, job searches, and interviewing
  • Attend Career Services seminar on Resume Writing and schedule an appointment with Career Services for resume assistance
  • Attend Interviewing Skills and Job Search Seminars
  • Become involved in the appropriate student organizations
  • Attend Career Fairs and Meet-the-Firms Night
  • Once you accept an internship offer, with permission from your academic advisor register for the internship course to obtain three hours of elective credit. All students must keep a work log, submit a written report and make a short presentation to faculty and students about their work

Participating in student clubs and organizations is a great way to enhance your educational experience and also looks good on your resume. The Sport Management Association (SMA) is a student organization composed of sport management majors. This club was founded on three premises:

  • To awaken and stimulate interest and professional advancement in the industry of sport management
  • To acquire and promote programs in related fields
  • To foster interaction between student majors.

Annual on-campus activities include marketing, event and facility management, fundraising, and club-sponsored sporting events. Students also have the opportunity to travel off campus national and regional academic conferences, sport industry conferences, professional, collegiate, and Olympic sporting events.

Students in the SMA attend an annual conference during the spring semester. This conference is an excellent opportunity to make contacts for future internships and employment. Contact Frank Jee,

Study Abroad programs are a great way to expand your horizons and at the same time earn college credit toward the completion of your academic program. If you want to gain international experience and exposure and a distinguishing edge in today's competitive job market, then studying abroad is for you. Academically, studying abroad is not only a fun way to earn credits, but it also exposes you to different teaching methods and perspectives on academic topics.

Western Carolina's Study Abroad opportunities are designed for both undergraduate and graduate students. These opportunities consist of programs that are one semester or an entire academic year, or even just for the summer. Each program has its own distinctions and prerequisites. Learn more about these opportunities.

Sport Management Faculty

Heidi Grappendorf


Ph.D., Sport Management

A.J. Grube


Ph.D., Sport Management; Dean, College of Business

Frank Wonsok Jee

Assistant Professor

Ph.D., Sport Management

Kadence Otto


Ph.D., Sport Management

Charles Parrish

Associate Professor

Ph.D., Sport Management, School Director

Erica Thompson

Assistant Instructor

M.S., Sport Management

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