Joshua Lupinek2019 Rising Alumni

Joshua Lupinek

Joshua Lupinek is an Assistant Professor of Business Administration at the University of Alaska Fairbanks, and has a PhD in sport management. At the University of Alaska, Josh has developed a full Bachelors of Sport and Recreation Business degree program based on student interest and industry needs. His research interests include sport marketing and social network analysis. He founded Alaska’s first virtual reality research lab, where scholars from all disciplines can develop experimental uses for VR equipment. He also has been working with rural, off-the-road system, American Indian–Alaska Native communities to repurpose virtual reality gaming equipment for public health uses. This project has been funded by the National Institutes of Health because of its potential to impact health disparities. Josh believes even as we become more immersed in technology and utilize data-driven results, it’s still important to be able to sit down and discuss an issue over coffee.

Current Job

Assistant Professor of Business Administration, University of Alaska Fairbanks, School of Management

CEHD Degree

PhD Sport Management, 2015

Please list any professional accomplishments you wish to mention.

I was the founding director of the UAF SOM Virtual Reality Lab in 2016, where emerging VR technology and equipment is utilized for marketing analytics research, sport marketing research, and curriculum development. I have secured over $180,000 in grants and published seven peer reviewed journal articles and two book chapters.

Volunteer activities

I have been a member at large of the Interior Alaska Hockey Officials Association (IAHOA) Board of Directors since 2017. I also volunteer two to four times a year to give technology talks at rural Alaska campus locations that are off of the road system.

Awards or honors from collegiate, professional, or volunteer experiences

I received the CEHD Outstanding Student Leadership Award in 2015 and was named a University of Alaska Fairbanks eLearning and Distance Education Chancellor’s Innovation in Technology and eLearning Fellow for 2016-17.

What professor(s) or course(s) were most influential during your time in CEHD?

Stephen Ross was the most influential to me personally as he was always accessible and taught me how to be a researcher. Mary Jo Kane taught me how to be a professional in the academic industry. Lisa Kihl helped me to expand my critical thinking skills outside of the box. Last but not least, Tiffany Richardson taught me how to be a leader in the classroom.

What is your favorite memory from the University of Minnesota?

The student community. How proud everyone was to be a student at the University of Minnesota. While we worked long hours as grad students in the basement of Cooke Hall, it was a bonding experience that made for awesome lunches and happy hours with fellow grad students.

What was the impact and benefit of your educational experience in CEHD?

My U of M educational experience opened the door for me to start a career in academics. Every day I strive to live up to the expectations of my degree and former professors. My U of M experience also provided Twin Cities networking experiences, such as the opportunity to work with CEHD alumnus Chris Schulz at the Active Kids Association of Sport (AKASPORT).

Who has inspired you the most during your career?

My father, Edward Lupinek, has inspired me the most during my career as he is the hardest working person I know, while also being the nicest person I know.

What skills are important to succeed as an emerging professional today?

Being a "people person" is one of the most important skills as an emerging professional. As we become more immersed in technology and utilize data-driven results for our careers, it is important to be able to sit down and discuss an issue over coffee. Being able to summarize an issue into one or two "so what" sentences is often difficult and face-to-face is still the best way to communicate, especially with difficult topics.

When you have 30 minutes of free time, what do you do?

As a hockey and golf person, if I had 30 minutes of free time I would find a driving range or putting green. If I was home, I would take my daughter and dog for a walk.

How do others describe you?

I would hope that others would describe me as kind, caring, and thoughtful. In the end, I want everyone to feel heard and respected, even if a decision didn't go their way.

How do you describe yourself?

Hard working. I am very fortunate to work with people who are way more talented and smarter than I am. However, I always strive to be the hardest working person in the building.

What's a good book you'd recommend to others?

If you are a fan of intercollegiate athletics, I would recommend Behind the Hedges: Big Money and Power Politics at the University of Georgia by Rich Whitt. It is an easy read that uses UGA as a case study to show how America supports its institutions of higher education.

If you could have coffee with anyone from history, who would it be?

I would like to have coffee with Abraham Lincoln. As one of our most influential leaders in America, I would love to hear some of his stories about staying true to his vision while making some tough decisions that were unpopular at the time.

What gets you excited about work?

Seeing students get jobs in their desired fields.

When you were a kid, what did you want to be when you grew up?

A professional hockey player in the NHL.

Outside of your job, how do you grow professionally?

I believe that my personal life has actually grown my professional life the most lately. As a newer parent, I have had to manage my time more effectively and I also can now relate to a whole new segment of the population.

What is a "fun fact" about you?

I still stay involved in the ice hockey industry as an NCAA D-I referee on the weekends.