Department of Kinesiology, Sports Management, & Physical Education

Sports Management

Department of Kinesiology, Sports Management, & Physical Education

Sports Management

  • Bachelor of Science
  • Undergraduate

125 credits

required for program

125 credits

125 credits

required for program

The sports management major focuses on preparing students with leadership, business, and operations training within a sports industry context. Students develop management skills, industry exposure, diverse career experience, and how to apply them to professional and amateur sports settings.

Sports Management may be the right degree for you if you

  • Enjoy a variety of tasks and want a career where "no two days are the same"
  • Enjoy working with others and collaborating together with team members to make a difference
  • Enjoy working in a fast paced environment which necessitates flexibility and adapting quickly to change

Why study Sports Management at Northwestern?

Beyond equipping you with the knowledge needed to succeed in a sports management career, you will learn biblical principles like ethics and Christ-like leadership––things you won’t find at a secular institution.

Students are taught by faculty who can draw from their personal experiences from working in the industry and who can bring in top-notch guest speakers to help you network. Making these connections can provide excellent real-world experience for students through practicums and internships that allow them to apply what they have learned in the classroom. In addition, being in the heart of the Twin Cities metro area brings a wide range of opportunities to work with a wide variety of athletic companies and sports organizations that are not available at colleges and universities in smaller markets.

Because of the cost of a higher education degree, you will want to understand the job outlook for sports-related occupations. According to the United States Bureau of Labor Statistics, “employment of entertainment and sports occupations is projected to grow 22 percent from 2020 to 2030, much faster than the average for all occupations."

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Careers in sports management

There are a variety of career and academic pathways that begin with a degree in kinesiology.

What types of work are related to this degree?

  • Accounts Manager/Corporate Partnerships
  • Athletic Administrator
  • Athletic Communications
  • Athletic Director
  • Business Development
  • Financial Management
  • Gameday/Event Coordinator
  • Parks and Recreation
  • Personnel Management
  • Professor of Sports Management
  • Public Relations
  • Resort Management
  • Sports & Health Club Staff
  • Sports Agent
  • Sports Camp Director
  • Sports Content Producer
  • Sports Information Director
  • Sports Law
  • Sports Marketing
  • Sports Mediator/Arbitrator
  • Sports Writer/Blogger
  • Ticket Sales
  • Tournament Planner
  • Youth Sports Coordinator

Who employs people with this degree?

  • Professional Sports Teams
  • Colleges and universities
  • Health clubs/specialized fitness studios
  • Recreation facilities
  • News Stations
  • Parks and recreation departments

Strategies for success:

  • Some fields in Sports Management require professional certification. Though many entry-level positions may be obtained with an undergraduate degree, most will require additional clinical experiences and a graduate or professional degree.
  • There are many different ways to work within the health and fitness industry. Identify a particular area of interest and then seek to gain the best combination of educational preparation, experience and skills.
  • If you plan to go to graduate school, take the time to look at various graduate school websites and speak with admission counselors. Be sure the Kinesiology track you choose has the right prerequisites to get into grad school. If it does not, be sure to pick up those classes as electives.
  • Given the growing number of aging adults, many positions available in these areas will involve working with the elderly.
  • Fitness communication is also a growing field offering opportunities to write, research, and report on health and fitness related topics for newspapers, magazines, and websites. If interested in this area, take supplemental course work in English, journalism or broadcasting and seek opportunities to volunteer with local or campus newspapers or television/ radio stations.

projected growth for entertainment and sports occupations from 2020-2030


job categories in Sports Management

$485 billion

annual revenue for the Sports Management Industry

What will I learn?

You will learn to analyze, think critically, and execute. No matter which major or track you choose, you will be prepared for a career.

Still have questions about this program or how to apply?

Our team is ready with answers!

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