Sport Management

The world of sport is constantly growing and changing. Students who are interested in working with professional, collegiate or community sports and athletic organizations will gain knowledge and experience in the many aspects of sport, enabling them to find a career path that will excite and challenge them.The University of Minnesota Sport Management program prepares students to learn about the exciting and developing business of sport through multiple outlets:

  • Ethics and law
  • Management and organization
  • Diversity in sport
  • Sales and fundraising
  • Marketing and business
  • Facilities and event operation

Outside of the classroom students in the Sport Management program gain hands-on experience preparing them to enter to the workforce. Students gain valuable experience and connections through:

  • Job sShadowing and networking
  • Study abroad and national student exchange
  • Research and involvement
  • Practical experience/practicum


The Sport Management is a competitive program that provides students with a strong understanding of the different aspects of today’s sport industry. To gain admission into the program students need to have the following completed or in progress:

  • 60 credits
  • 2.0 minimum GPA, although 2.75 or higher is preferred
  • KIN 1871, Survey of Kinesiology, Recreation and Sport
  • SMGT 1701, Introduction to Sport Management
  • PSTL 1571, Computer Literacy and Problem Solving

Students who have not attended the university and have not had access to KIN 1871, SMGT 1701 and PSTL 1571 are strongly encouraged to have some of the following completed along with the GPA requirements and the 60 credit requirement. Strong Applicants from within the University of Minnesota will also have the following courses:

  • Introduction to sociology
  • Introduction to psychology
  • Public speaking
  • 3 PE courses
  • Community and Public Health (PUBH 3001 and 3003)
  • The majority of the liberal education requirements and any missing high school requirements

Applications to the Sport Management major are due on March 1st for Fall semester and October 1st for Spring semester. To learn more about the application process and requirements, as well as to apply, go to:
Transfer admission

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Core courses and focus electives

The core courses in Sport Management will allow you to gain a broad and diverse understanding of sport industry. You will work with Alyssa Maples once you are admitted into the major to discuss sequencing and your focus electives.

Also use Grad Planner of OneStop to plan out your major course-work and the remainder of your liberal education requirements.

Sport Management major courses and curriculum 

Core courses descriptions

There is not an exact order for you to take the courses, however this is our suggested order for you to gain the most knowledge and be the most successful in your courses.

  • SMGT 3111 - Sports Facility and Event Management
    Aspects of managing sport facilities/events. Conceptualization of sports events. Event management planning process, budgeting, site selection, booking, ticketing, sponsorship.
  • SMGT 3143 - Organization and Management of Sport
    Principles, policies, and procedures in administration/management of sports programs at interscholastic/intercollegiate levels.
  • SMGT 3421 - Business of Sport
    Financial aspects of sport. Revenue producing strategies, budget preparation/analysis, controlling expenses. Tax support, municipal bonds, ticket sales, concessions, merchandising, media, fund raising.
  • SMGT 3501 - Sport in a Diverse Society
    Relationship between sport and contemporary social institutions. Groups/individuals who have historically been marginalized or excluded from sport participation. Race, sex, social class, sexual orientation, physical (dis)abilities. (meets Lib Ed req of Social Sciences; meets Lib Ed req of Diversity and Soc. Justice in the U.S.)
  • SMGT 3631 - Sport Marketing
    Fundamental theories/issues in sport marketing, grounded in traditional marketing principles. Unique applications to sport business industry.
  • SMGT 3601 - Ethics and Values in Sport
    Violence, demonstrative behavior, sportsmanship. Ethical issues in playing of sport and in management/governance of sport industry.
  • SMGT 3861 - Legal Aspects of Sport
    U.S. legal system, its structure/terminology. Sport legal aspects of contract law, statutory law, constitutional law, intellectual property, negligence, risk management. Managerial analysis, decision making.
  • SMGT 3881W - Senior Seminar in Sport Management
    Presentations/discussions on sport-related topics of interest. Cannot be taken until later in the program.
  • SMGT 3996 - Practicum: The Sport Experience
    Practical experience in one or more sport settings. Cannot be done until the majority of the core courses have been completed.

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Focus electives

The purpose of focus electives (20 credits) is to enhance the core courses in your major and provide a greater understanding of topics of interest to you that tie in with your professional ideas. You will discuss these ideas with your departmental adviser Alyssa Maples and get her approval before taking courses that will count as focus electives, or you can consult the list of potential courses below to find a combination that will support your professional goals. Also consider looking for a minor that will support your professional goals. If there is a minor that compliments Sport Management program, it can be arranged the minor courses can be used for your focus electives.

Suggested areas for focus electives are:

  • Accounting
  • Applied business
  • Applied economics
  • Architecture
  • Business lLaw
  • Carlson School of Management
  • Business administration
  • Business and industry ducation
  • Communication studies
  • Construction management
  • Economics
  • Educational policy and administration
  • Family social science
  • Finance
  • Global studies
  • Human resource development
  • Human resources and industrial
  • Relations
  • Insurance and risk management
  • International business
  • Journalism
  • Kinesiology
  • Management
  • Marketing
  • Public health
  • Recreation, park, and leisure studies
  • Urban studies
  • Youth development and research

Potential focus elective individual courses:

  • SMGT 3632 Sport Sales and Fund-Raising
  • KIN 5725 Organization and Management of Physical Education and Sport
  • KIN 5804 National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) Compliance
  • KIN 3131W History and Philosophy of Sport
  • KIN 3126W Sport and Exercise Psychology
  • KIN 3001 Lifetime Health and Wellness
  • REC 3541W Recreation Programming
  • REC 3601W Leisure and Human Development
  • REC 5271 Community Leisure Services for Persons with Disabilities
  • BLAW 3058 The Law of Contracts and Agency
  • OLPD 3401 Teaching Marketing and Promotion
  • OLPD 3424 Sales Training
  • OLPD 4401 E-Marketing
  • OLPD 4426 Customer Service Training
  • YOST 3001 Introduction to History & Philosophy of Youthwork
  • YOST 3032 Adolescent and Youth Development for Youthworkers
  • OLPD 3601 Introduction to Human Resource Development
  • OLPD 3640 Introduction to Organization Development
  • CMGT 3001 Introduction to Construction
  • MGMT 3010 Introduction to Entrepreneurship
  • ACCT 2050 Introduction to Financial Reporting
  • OLPD 1301W Personal Leadership in the University
  • OLPD 1302 Personal Leadership in the University
  • EDPA 3302 Leadership, You, and Your Community (Prereq EDPA 1301W)
  • OLPD 3305 Learning About Leadership through Film and Literature
  • ECON 1102 Principles of Macroeconomics
  • COMM 3201 Introduction to Electronic Media Production

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Academic advisers (Sport Management)

Department adviser

Alyssa Maples, School of Kinesiology Sport Management departmental adviser
310A 1901 University Ave SE, Minneapolis MN 55414

Reasons to meet with Alyssa:

  • Degree planning
  • Sport management courses
  • Focus elective planning
  • Practicum and experiences
  • Study abroad

Student services advisers

Tracey Hammel, CEHD student services adviser
360 Education Sciences Building, 56 East River Rd, Minneapolis MN 55455

Sara Georgeson, CEHD student services adviser
360 Education Sciences Building, 56 East River Rd, Minneapolis MN 55455

Reasons to meet with Tracey or Sara:

  • Degree planning
  • Liberal education requirements
  • Resources at the university
  • Study abroad
  • Readmission into the program, probation appointment or leave of absence discussion

Call CEHD Student Services to schedule an appointment with your student services adviser

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Practicum (SMGT 3996) is an 8 credits/360 total hours of experience at 1 or 2 places that will be completed at the end of your degree. This is similar to a senior internship. In order to start your practicum you need to have the majority of your core major courses completed. You will need to consult with a faculty member who is supervising practicum a semester ahead of time before starting practicum. You will fill out weekly logs and your practicum faculty supervisor will consult with your site supervisor to discuss your professional experiences and progress throughout the semester, as well as you will write a reflection paper at the end of your experiences. This can be done over 2 semesters or 1 more intense semester. Coaching will not be allowed to be a part of your practicum.

Brainstorm ideas for sites with faculty, advisers and career services, as well as start looking for different ideas of practicum sites and opportunities in advance.

Examples of organizations and sites:

Minnesota Timberwolves, Minnesota Twins, Minnesota Vikings, Minnesota Swarm, Saint Paul Saints, Minnesota Lynx, Minnesota Wild, National Sport Center, other Colleges and Universities, Parks and Recreation Departments, Fitness and Athletic centers and Athletics-School Districts.

Example of positions and departments:

Marketing, game day promotions, management, operations, event planning, sales, broadcasting, athletic director, communication, equipment room management, game organization and management, community recreation organization, media relations.

Please review the Practicum Handbook.
Within the Practicum Handbook website you will be able to find the Learning Agreement to give to the practicum instructor for the semester.

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Careers and experiences

The department strongly encourages students to meet with a career counselor in CEHD Career Services to work on developing their marketing materials (resume and cover letter) and their preparedness to find jobs and experiences. Please visit for more information on these topics as well as many others.

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Study abroad

Learning abroad in Sport Management

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The University of Minnesota is an equal opportunity educator and employer
Last modified on 2/24/2014