MS in Kinesiology (Sport Management and Policy)
Our M.S. in Kinesiology with a concentration in sport management and policy prepares both scholars and professionals for the world of sport management through either a thesis or non-thesis program.
Both specializations give you a full understanding of multiple areas of sport management through interdisciplinary classes. Our curriculum blends business practices with the needs of the sport industry, studying the place sport has in society, examining the sociological and philosophical dimensions of sport, and governmental and industry policies that apply to it. Students will learn through hands-on, real-world experiential learning and case studies led by our esteemed faculty.
Upon graduation, many of our non-thesis students begin careers at the professional, collegiate, or secondary level, while others explore corporate business and sponsorship opportunities. Our thesis students are well prepared to enter research institutions to pursue doctoral degrees.
Our graduates work in a variety of industries that include the NBA, NFL, MLB, NHL, and MLS; with professional sports teams like the Atlanta Braves, Atlanta Hawks, Atlanta United, Atlanta Falcons, Gwinnett Stripers, Dallas Cowboys; within agencies like IMG, Creative Artists Agency, Octagon, and Melt; and with industry-leading organizations like ESPN, the NCAA, Nike, and many more.
- Learn business skills as they relate to the sport industry for graduate or industry work in law, business, and kinesiology
- Faculty are experts in marketing and consumer behavior, economics, finance, research and analytics, legal and ethical issues, organizational behavior, sales and strategy, diversity and social justice, and risk management related to sport
- Experiential learning opportunities at the top sport business organizations across the world
- Located close to every major professional sport league as well as UGA’s Athletic Association, Augusta National, East Lake Country Club, and other top sport venues
- Ability to combine academic coursework through the Terry College of Business and Grady College of Journalism and Mass Communication
Video: Study Sport Management at UGA
Understand the law, policies, marketing, and social justice issues that drive the sport industry in the University of Georgia’s Department of Kinesiology.
Our program will help you develop a foundation in finance, economics, budgeting, marketing, law, governance and policy, facility design, event operations and human resources management. Our courses will assist you in applying this knowledge to a variety of contexts in the sport industry.
Sample course offerings:
- Sport economics and policy
- Sport marketing
- Sport event management and facilities
- Managing the legal aspects of sport
- Social aspects of sport
- Sport finance
- Sport policy and governance
- Philosophy and ethics in sport
- Sport organizational behavior
- Sport sales, fundraising, and revenue generation
This is the recommended track for future practioners in the field. This track includes 36 hours of coursework, which includes:
- 24 hours of required coursework in sport management classes
- 3 hours in research-related courses
- 3 hours of internship/practicum
- 6 hours of electives
On the surface, our non-thesis track teaches the knowledge and skills to manage sport and exercise programs. But the breadth and depth of the program prepares you for diverse career opportunities in organizations such as:
- Professional sport teams
- College athletic departments
- Sport marketing and public relations firms
- Sports agencies
- Health and fitness facilities
If you choose a thesis track, you will become experienced in research inquiry as you identify weaknesses in theories and practices in the sport management world. Through a systemic inquiry process, you will use documentation and reasoning to seek a better understanding about current phenomena; revise, improve, or change theories; or develop new theories.
This track includes 30 hours of coursework, which includes:
- 9 hours of required coursework
- 9 hours of thesis-related courses
- 6 hours of research courses
- 6 hours of electives
Our M.S./JD joint degree program prepares you to work in a sports leadership role. If you’d like to pursue this joint degree, you will need to apply and receive admission to each program.
Learn more about the M.S. in Sport Management and Policy/JD Joint Degree (PDF)
Our faculty have expertise in a range of subjects, with faculty members who serve as advisors to students in the sport management emphasis:
- Dr. Thomas Baker
Co-Director, Sport, Economics, and Law Lab
- Dr. Rose Chepyator-Thomson
Director, Cultural Studies in Physical Activity Lab
- Dr. Clay Collins
- Dr. Becca Leopkey
- Dr. Steven Salaga
Co-Director, Sport, Economics, and Law Lab
- Dr. James Zhang
Director, International Center for Sport Management
How to Apply
The Graduate School handles admission for all graduate programs at the University of Georgia, including those in the College of Education. The Graduate School website contains important details about the application process, orientation, and many other useful links to guide you through the process of attending UGA at the graduate level.
Start A Graduate School Application
Prospective Graduate Student Application Checklist
The following should be uploaded to the Graduate School’s application:
- Unofficial transcripts from each institution of higher education attended
- Statement of Purpose
- Statement of Purpose should summarize your career goals and how the degree program would help you attain those identified goals.
- If applying to a M.S.-thesis or Ph.D. program, ensure you describe your research interests and how your interests fit with a specific faculty member within the Department of Kinesiology.
- A CV or resume
- Contact information for three references
- Official GRE scores (M.S. thesis and Ph.D. applicants only)
- Scores can be sent to UGA’s Graduate School as a designated score recipient using code 5813.
Deadline to Apply
Login to Existing Application
- January 10th
Summer or Fall Semester
- March 15th
- Students are informed of their admissions decision on a rolling basis through the end of June.
- October 15th
- Students are informed of their admissions decisions on a rolling basis through the end of November.
You can find more information on departmental assistantships and deadlines on the Department of Kinesiology page .
The Sport Management program at the University of Georgia provides intership opportunities that provide valuable educational experiences for students. Students are required to fulfill experiential learning credits as a graduation requirement.
Download the Sport Management Internship Guide (PDF)
Need to recruit sport management interns?
The Sport Management program will work with partners to meet their talent needs. Have your brand connect with the future of the industry by posting opportunities with the program. To discuss your organization’s specific needs and hire talented students for positions when the fit is mutually beneficial, please contact Michael Slonaker .
UGA Alumni Sports Industry CouncilThe UGA Alumni Sports Industry Council is an external advisory board made up of sport industry veterans who foster important links between the program and the sports business community. The group also provides student support in the areas of professional mentoring, program services, such as guest lecturers and scholarship support, as well as internship and employment placement.
I am the manager for consumer insights at Delta Airlines. Before that, I led analytics and insights for B/R Live, a direct-to-consumer sports offering from Turner Sports. I analyzed fan behavior and consumption patterns in addition to helping the business unit profile potential leagues for acquisition. I communicated these insights to internal and external stakeholders, including PR, marketing, operations, and league executives.
The UGA Sport Management program helped me to think more critically about issues, especially Baker’s Sport Law class. His Socratic approach to teaching made me uncomfortable and helped me grow as a learner. The program also connected me to peers and like-minded professionals with whom I built rapport while in the program.
My advice for current UGA master’s students is simple: conduct informational interviews. Students cannot do enough of these. Pick any organization you might be interested in, search for that organization on LinkedIn, and view the employees who work there. Find an employee in an area you may be interested in, reach out and leverage the UGA brand, saying you’re a student. Kindly ask if that individual would be open to a 30-minute informational interview to learn more. If the employee agrees, follow-up occasionally and stay in touch. Do this for any organization you’re interested in. The worst that can happen is that someone doesn’t respond or says no. The best that can happen is an employer selects you for an open role or even creates a role if you impress them.
My name is Brooke Brumbelow (McCoy), and I am the communications manager for the Orlando Magic. Some of my primary responsibilities include generating publicity for the Magic’s on and off the court initiatives, serving as a staff writer and copy editor, managing the credentialing process, facilitating media arrangements for home games, producing the game program, assisting in the publication of the media guide, helping to facilitate media interviews and player appearances, and supporting all areas of the communications department.
In addition, I work all games and conduct one-on-one interviews with all players and coaching staff in media preparation, and I get the opportunity to cover events like the NBA All-Star Game and the NBA Draft on behalf of the Magic. I am very blessed to be in this position, and I always thank the University of Georgia and the Sport Management program for helping me get to where I am today. Not only did the program help me to see what I wanted to do with my career, but it allowed me to gain the insight and experience needed to succeed.
I would tell current UGA Sport Management students to never give up and volunteer whenever you can. The sport industry is an amazing industry to be in and, because of that, everyone wants to be a part of it. It is very competitive and a hard field to land in. However, do not give up. Take every “no” as a positive and a piece of encouragement and work harder towards your goal. Volunteer whenever you can. You can never have enough experience in this field, and it allows you to grow as a person and an employee. Lastly, enjoy every minute of it. Sports are fun and it is an amazing and rewarding opportunity that we get to call a job.
Please use our online form if you have any questions for the department. Please be as specific as possible so that we may quickly assist you.
The College’s programs are taught by dedicated faculty who are experts in a range of areas and are passionate about helping students succeed both in their programs and professionally.
A close working relationship with your advisor is key as you progress through your program of study. Please note that most graduate students at UGA are not assigned to a faculty advisor until after admittance.
Almost all in-state students begin their studies at UGA paying limited tuition or fees. Please note that these amounts are subject to change and are meant to give prospective students an idea of the costs associated with a degree at the University of Georgia College of Education.
Students may qualify for a variety of assistantships, scholarships, and other financial awards to help offset the cost of tuition, housing, and other expenses.