PULLMAN, Wash. — Christine Cooper, a Washington State University senior from Marysville, is looking forward to graduation and entering the work force. She is excited about her future because she finally found a degree program to match her interests and goals.
Cooper was one of the first to sign up for the bachelor of arts degree in sport management now offered by the Department of Educational Leadership and Counseling Psychology.
“I’m now looking forward to getting a job,” Cooper said. “I’m really into sports, so working in this field will be fun.”
Cooper is one of 15 WSU undergraduates who chose sport management in the first two months after the program received final approval from the Washington Higher Education Coordinating Board in July of 1997, explained Jo Washburn, associate professor and program coordinator. The WSU program is the only undergraduate degree in sport management offered in Washington.
WSU offered a similar sport management degree within the leisure studies program. That degree was established in 1985 and eliminated during reconfiguration in 1993. The sport management minor has continued since 1993. Currently, some 40 students are enrolled in that minor. Washburn expects the new major program to enroll at least 120 students, which was the number enrolled in the previous degree program.
“We know the interest is there — in the students who contact us and in the employers who call us for interns and graduates,” she said. “We get requests for interns from athletic clubs, minor league baseball teams, school districts and others.”
Sport management majors can expect to step into management of intercollegiate athletics, professional sports, youth sports or sport retailing, Washburn said. Preparation includes studies in sport administration and a choice of specializations, through a minor in business, leadership or communications. In addition, students must finish both a practicum experience of 180 hours of volunteering in a related field and a supervised 10-week, full-time internship.
For more information, students can call 335-0935.