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What Is an MS in Sports Administration — Educational Leadership?

A Master of Science in Sports Administration prepares students for a variety of leadership roles working with sports teams and individual athletes. Students take classes in traditional disciplines such as math, science and writing, but also develop a broad perspective on the business, legal and marketing aspects of sports. They study the medical and social elements of athletic performance, as well as the role of sports in education.

Many graduates of Southeastern Oklahoma State University’s MS in Sports Administration with an emphasis in Educational Leadership online program go on to work for colleges, universities and public school districts. They also work for businesses and nonprofits that promote sports and fitness education.

Roles for graduates to consider include:

  • Athletic Director
  • Academic Coordinator or Program Manager
  • Athletic Trainer
  • Facilities or Operations Manager
  • Sales and Marketing Director
  • Social Media Manager
  • Compliance Officer
  • Sales and Marketing Manager

Working for a College or University Sports Program

All sports teams need talented athletes and great coaches who can help them win, but also people to run the day-to-day operations. Talented administrators and great managers behind the scenes are the hidden assets that help sustain a program’s success.

Administrators in college and university athletic programs oversee every aspect of team operations, facilities and competition. They are also charged with supervising and guiding the student athletes who play for those teams as they complete their academic careers. Administrators may work in direct team support roles as compliance officers, in marketing and social media as academic managers, with alumni and business partners, and more.

College and university sports administrators also work with coaches and athletes to ensure the program complies with all rules and policies set by the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) and regional sports conferences.

Together, these governing bodies give college athletics its structure and a system for dealing with competition-related issues and other conflicts that arise. Graduates can also work for these authorities, taking on responsibilities such as enforcing the rules of play and conduct, monitoring safety, or determining penalties when a program violates established rules or policies.

Working for a School District

Sports administration for primary and secondary schools is a career path that requires dedication and flexibility. Administrators, coaches, trainers and others working with young athletes often need the experience to lead, the skills to teach, and practical knowledge in behavior management to keep students on the right track. Depending on the size of the school district, administrators may also be called upon to help with fundraising and community building, social media outreach, policy and procedure development, and more.

If you have the passion to lead and the ability to bring a wide range of resources together to support a school’s athletic and fitness programs, you may find a rewarding career in this form of administration. After all, your efforts can give students the best chance for success on and off the field.

Working in the Nonprofit Sector

Some sports administration graduates make their mark by running sports-related nonprofit organizations, building playgrounds in local communities, raising money for athletic equipment, or supporting efforts that promote physical education and fitness. Others become social entrepreneurs who use technology or other business resources to show the world that sports offers limitless possibilities for those who dream big.

Sports administration is a career that attracts people with passion for the games we play and dedication to athletic excellence.

Learn more about the SOSU MS in Sports Administration with an emphasis in Educational Leadership online program.

Sources: Assistant Athletic Director – Compliance

PayScale: Master of Science (MS), Sports Administration Degree Average Salary

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