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(pending SACSCOC approval)

The Global Sport Management (GSM) graduate program is a total immersion cohort model in which students complete their degree requirements in three terms (summer, fall, and spring) in seated classes and through experiential learning or directed research. Students are expected to complete eight core courses and six credits of either experiential learning (internship) or capstone project/thesis. The 30-credit program is housed at the Charlotte campus, providing easy access for those working and/or living in the Charlotte area.

Why Pfeiffer

  • One-Year Master’s Degree
  • Domestic and International Travel
  • Extensive Networking Opportunities 
  • Top-25 Sport Market in America
  • Consistent Exposure to Industry Experts
  • Excellent Career Prospects

Curriculum

This degree program requires 30 semester hours.

Summer Courses - 5 Weeks

  • Foundations of Global Sport Management - Monday & Wednesday, 9:00am-1:30pm
  • Research Methods and Analytics in Sport - Tuesday & Thursday, 9:00am-1: 30pm

Fall Courses - 16 Weeks

  • Contemporary Issues in Global Sport - Tuesday, 9:00am-12:00pm
  • Global Sport Governance - Wednesday, 9:00am-12:00pm
  • Global Sport Marketing - Thursday, 9:00am-12:00pm
  • Internship/Capstone/Thesis 1 - Independent Study

Spring Courses - 16 Weeks

  • Global Sport Media and Communication - Tuesday, 9:00am-12:00pm
  • European Model of Sport - Wednesday, 9:00am-12:00pm
  • Global Sport Tourism and Events - Thursday, 9:00am-12:00pm
  • Internship/Capstone/Thesis 2 - Independent Study

Travel

American Sport Tour

Each year during the fall semester, Global Sport Management students are afforded the opportunity to visit a different region of the country to meet with representatives of sport organizations outside of Charlotte. During their travels, students tour facilities and learn best practices from industry experts engaged in a variety of sport settings. This trip is an excellent opportunity to connect with professionals and develop lasting relationships while learning how sport is developed and delivered in various sport markets across the United States.

European Sport Tour

Each year during the spring semester, Global Sport Management students participate in a European study abroad seminar, giving them a unique firsthand experience with international sport. The tour is designed to immerse students in the European model of sport management, marketing, and sport law; and to provide students with an understanding of the changing context for sport in a global society. Participants attend lectures from European sport executives, conduct student workshops, participate in organized class discussions as well as activities, and tour sport facilities. Representatives of top international sport organizations present a wide range of issues during the program. Pfeiffer University is pleased to partner with LanCon for this exciting seminar trip. For more information on LanCon, please visit http://www.lancon.nl/

Careers

Graduates of the GSM program will be well-positioned in the job market with developed expertise and a professional sport industry network through applied research and experiential learning opportunities, thereby distinguishing themselves from others and preparing them for success. Through experiential learning and travel experiences, students make connections with individuals and organizations, initiating relationships and leaving lasting impressions. Graduates of the GSM program will work in local, regional, national and international sport settings.

Admission

For admission to the Global Sport Management program, a 3.0 GPA in undergraduate studies is required. Students who do not have a 3.0 GPA may be provisionally accepted based on a strong statement of purpose, interview, and references. Applications include:

  • Official Transcript(s)
  • Statement of Purpose
  • Interview (online or in person)
  • Three References (personal, professional, and/or academic)

Total Program Cost - $28,560

For more information, please contact Dr. Christopher Atwater at christopher.atwater@pfeiffer.edu

Ready to get started? Apply now. 

    Advisory Board

    The Global Sport Management program at Pfeiffer University is fortunate to have an active and engaged advisory board who work to provide and facilitate opportunities for students to network and be involved in the sport industry. The board meets three times annually to identify and discuss opportunities for students, examine the current state of the program, and make recommendations for the future direction of the program. The Global Sport Management Advisory Board is also active in promoting the GSM program in the greater Charlotte community and beyond.

    Meet the Board

    • John Swofford | Commissioner | Atlantic Coast Conference

      John SwoffordNow in his 21st year as Atlantic Coast Conference Commissioner, John Swofford continues to make a dramatic impact on the ACC and throughout college athletics. As the ACC’s longest-tenured Commissioner, Swofford has been part of the conference for nearly five decades as a student-athlete and administrator.

      A native of North Wilkesboro, North Carolina, and a two-year all-state quarterback at Wilkes Central High, Swofford remains the only player to have his number retired by the school after earning Most Valuable Player honors in football, basketball, and track.

      After being recruited by numerous schools to play football, Swofford attended the University of North Carolina on a Morehead Scholarship as part of head coach Bill Dooley’s first recruiting class. In addition to earning a spot on the Atlantic Coast Conference Academic Honor Roll as a student-athlete, he started at quarterback as a sophomore and part of his junior year, and then finished his career as a defensive back for UNC’s 1971 ACC Championship team. He played in the Peach Bowl as a junior and the Gator Bowl as a senior.

      Swofford received his Master’s in Athletic Administration from Ohio University. His first job in college athletics came at the University of Virginia — where he worked under future ACC Commissioner Gene Corrigan — before returning to North Carolina. In 1980, at the age of 31, Swofford was named the athletics director at his alma mater. He held that post for 17 years, a period in which North Carolina claimed more ACC and NCAA Championships than during any athletics director’s tenure in ACC history, and claimed the 1994 Sears Directors’ Cup, awarded to the top overall athletics program in the nation. Swofford also hired six head coaches that went on to win national championships — five at North Carolina and football coach Mack Brown at the University of Texas.

      As Commissioner, Swofford has successfully guided the Atlantic Coast Conference through turbulent times in college athletics and has led the league’s expansion from nine to 15 schools. Under his leadership, the ACC has remained at the forefront as a leader in college athletics. During his 20 years as Commissioner, ACC teams have won 81 national titles.

      Swofford was a leading advocate for NCAA legislation approved in January of 2015 that allows Autonomy 5 conferences to better address the needs of their institutions, athletic programs and student-athletes. In April of 2013, Swofford and the leadership of the ACC’s member institutions spearheaded a grant of rights agreement that helped stabilize the college athletic landscape and further secured the league’s position as one of the nation’s premier conferences.

      On July 21, 2016, Swofford announced that ESPN and the Atlantic Coast Conference would launch the ACC Network (Fall 2019) and ACC Network Extra (Fall 2016). The 20-year partnership will provide ACC fans unprecedented access to live events via a comprehensive, multi-platform network while extending the conference’s existing rights agreement with ESPN as the conference’s exclusive worldwide rights holder through 2036.

      Swofford oversaw the creation of the ACC Football Championship Game and played a key role in the evolution of the postseason structure to today’s College Football Playoff. The ACC Bowl affiliations have been tremendously enhanced under his watch.

      He was instrumental in starting the ACC/Big Ten Challenge, now an early-season staple for both men’s and women’s college basketball. He created the ACC Student-Athlete Advisory Committee in 1999 and launched the ACC Community Outreach Program.

      Swofford is a member of four Halls of Fame — the North Carolina Sports Hall of Fame; the North Carolina High School Athletic Association Hall of Fame; the Chick-fil-A Bowl Hall of Fame; and the Wilkes County Hall of Fame. He has been awarded the Corbett Award, which is the highest administrative honor given nationally to a collegiate athletics administrator. Swofford has received the Homer Rice Award from the Division 1A Athletic Directors’ Association and is a recipient of the Ohio University Distinguished Alumnus Award. In 2011, he also received one of Greensboro’s Father of the Year Awards.

      Swofford and his wife, Nora, reside in Greensboro, North Carolina. Together, they have three children — Autumn and her husband, Sherman Wooden, who have three children, Maya, Lyla and Lincoln; Chad and his wife, Caitlyn, who have one child, Owen; and Amie and her husband, Mike Caudle, who have one child, Emerson.

    • Alejandra Miller | Senior Sports Marketing Manager | Adidas

      Alejandra MillerAlejandra Miller began her career as a soccer promotions representative at Eurosport, the largest soccer specialty company in the world, after playing soccer and lacrosse at Pfeiffer University. The last 12 years have been spent with Adidas, where she has climbed the ranks to her current role as the senior sports marketing manager. Her first assignments were in Grassroots Soccer, supporting club soccer organizations throughout the U.S., before progressing to the management level and working with the highest level of U.S. soccer, Major League Soccer (MLS). She currently oversees the partnership marketing of seven of the current professional franchises and is closely involved in helping the league launch new franchises. She has also managed marquee assets for Adidas, including the Chelsea Football Club of England’s Premier League.

      Alejandra has provided assistance and guidance to the Charlotte Soccer Taskforce in their efforts to bring professional soccer to Charlotte. She has also been a keynote speaker for Women’s Day at the annual Adidas NSCAA Coaches Convention and at Pfeiffer’s 2017 Accepted Student Day. Also in 2017, Pfeiffer awarded Alejandra with the Presidential Merit Award.

      In service to her community, Alejandra is involved with The Kuykenstrong Foundation, a nonprofit organization working in partnership with Georgetown University's Lombardi Cancer Center, to help children afflicted with pediatric cancer. She is also a member and supporter of Peace Passers, a Charlotte-based charity that redistributes soccer equipment to underserved communities around the world, and a Falcon Club member in support of both the men's and women's soccer teams. Go Falcons!

      Alejandra resides in Charlotte, NC with her husband David (Pfeiffer class of ’04) and daughter Olivia.

    • Corinne Milien | Co-Founder and Executive Director | The Winning Edge Leadership Academy

      Corinne MilienAs the co-founder and executive director of The Winning Edge Leadership Academy, Corinne Milien is devoted to building diversity in sports business by cultivating the professional potential of women and minority leaders in sports business. A product of two Haitian immigrants, Corinne has taken advantage of every opportunity to influence and develop student-athletes and young professionals across the country. Formerly an event supervisor with ESPN Events managing five of ESPN’s 30 owned and operated events including Champions Classic, Celebration Bowl, Armed Forces Classic, and the MEAC/SWAC Challenge. She also served honorably in the US Air Force spending time stationed at Spangdahlem Air Base, Germany before attending the US Air Force Academy Prep school and the US Air Force Academy in Colorado Springs. In 2010, she graduated from Bemidji State University with a degree in Sports Management then took her talents to Knoxville, Tennessee to serve as the legendary Pat Summitt’s last graduate assistant and recruiting coordinator for the Tennessee Lady Vols basketball team while earning a masters in Sports Management.

      Awards: 2018 New York University School of Professional Studies Preston Robert Tisch Institute for Global Sport Ambassador of the Year

    • Alan Wheeling | Director of Luxury Sales and Services | Hornets Sports and Entertainment

      Alan WheelingAlan Wheeling currently serves as Director of Luxury Sales & Services for Hornets Sports & Entertainment. In this role, Alan oversees all sales, service and retention efforts for luxury products, including suites, courtside and all-inclusive seating for the Charlotte Hornets and Spectrum Center. Since joining the Hornets in 2009, Wheeling has been instrumental in the growth and development of the ticket sales and services department. Wheeling initially joined the franchise in season ticket services, where he spent six seasons building relationships with current clients, serving as the day to day contact for members and retaining over 90% of his accounts while exceeding sales goals. In 2015, he was promoted to a management position where he spent two years helping to identify, interview, train and develop new hires as well as oversee all sales and marketing campaigns for the Luxury Department prior to being promoted to his current role in 2017.

      In addition to Charlotte Hornets games, Wheeling has played an integral part of the company’s sales efforts for a number of marquee events including the 2019 NBA All-Star Game, the 2015 and 2018 NCAA Men’s Division I Basketball Championships, and a wide variety of the biggest concerts and shows on tour.

      Prior to joining Hornets Sports & Entertainment in 2009, Wheeling worked with Disney Sports Attractions and the ESPN Wide World of Sports, where he helped develop and grow key programming and partnerships with ESPN, ABC, MLB, NFL, NBA, USOC, Pop Warner and other third-party clients to enhance brand awareness, increase profitably and position them for future expansion.

      Wheeling is a graduate of the College of William & Mary, where he was a four-year starter and letterman for the Tribe football team, including serving as team captain for the 2006 season. He went on to earn his master’s degree in sport leadership from Virginia Commonwealth University in 2008.

      Wheeling and his wife, Amanda, reside in Charlotte with their son, Emmitt.

    • Ashlee Fontes-Comber | Elected Member, Board of Directors | United Soccer Coaches

      Ashlee Fontes-ComberAshlee Fontes-Comber brings over 18 years of experience in the sport industry as an athlete, executive, coach, and consultant. An award-winning senior operations executive, she is a proven and tested leader dedicated to the advancement, development, and education of sport for individuals at all levels on the field and in the front office.

      Fontes-Comber worked for major teams in the top sports leagues in the country: National Women’s Soccer League (NWSL), United Soccer Leagues (USL), National Basketball Association (NBA), Women’s National Basketball Association (WNBA) and the American Basketball Association (ABA), Atlantic Coast Conference (ACC), and the National Hockey League (NHL); building relationships with some of the top global organizations and brands and international professionals and athletes.

      Most recently, Fontes-Comber served as the Director of Operations for the D.C. United Women and helped lead their transformation from a semi-professional soccer club to a full-blown professional club with a soccer grass roots development pyramid. She was the Chief Operating Officer (COO) of the Washington Spirit, a founding member of the National Women’s Soccer League (NWSL), where she was responsible for all aspects of the Club’s operation, performance, and service. During her years with the Spirit, she led the organization from a professional soccer start-up club to an operationally efficient, high-performing, and financially stable/profitable entity. Further cementing the Spirit a major contributor to the growth and development of women’s soccer from youth to professional in the United States and around the world.

      Fontes-Comber was a soccer scholarship athlete at Florida State University while majoring in Sports Management. She played semi-professional for the top women’s soccer league in the country at that time, W-League. She earned her Master’s of Science from Northeastern University in Leadership with concentrations in Organizational Communication and Project Management. She is currently working on her Ph.D. in Sport Management from Florida State University.

      In her continued commitment to the development and advancement of sport, she is serving a 6-year term on the board of Directors for the United Soccer Coaches (formerly NSCAA). Fontes-Comber is an adjunct professor at George Mason University, coaches youth soccer for Florida Youth Soccer Association’s (FYSA) Olympic Development Program (ODP) and Florida Elite-Tallahassee, and conducts consulting/advising projects when available. She currently lives in Tallahassee, Florida with her two children, Reese (11) and Aedan (9), her spouse, Ryan, and their pets.

    • Dr. Richard Sander | Former Director of Athletics | East Tennessee State University and Virginia Commonwealth University

      GSM SealDr. Richard Sander joined East Tennessee State University in 2013 where he served as the Director of Athletics prior to retiring in 2017. During his time at ETSU, Sander started the new football program which began regular season play in the fall of 2017 to include every phase of the program including the conceptualization and completion of a $28 million on campus football stadium. Sander also developed the strategic plan for ETSU athletics in 2015, rebranded the athletic department and created all new images for both the athletic department and the university. He successfully facilitated the move of ETSU basketball to Freedom Hall and worked with the City of Johnson City on a $13 million renovation. Under Sander’s leadership, ETSU was recognized in 2016 and 2017 as the winner of the SoCon Commissioner’s Cup as the most successful broad-based program in the Southern Conference having won 8 conference championships during that span.

      Prior to joining ETSU, Dr. Sander led Virginia Commonwealth’s athletic program for 20 years. During his tenure, the VCU Rams claimed 27 CAA (Colonial Athletic Association) championship titles and made deep runs in the NCAA tournaments in men’s basketball, men’s and women’s tennis, golf, men’s and women’s soccer and baseball. Sander also oversaw nearly $40 million in capital improvements for VCU athletic facilities. These additions included the construction of Alltel Pavilion, which has been recognized as one of the nation’s top home court advantage for men’s and women’s basketball and women’s volleyball teams while also serving as a venue for numerous special events.

      Sander was influential in bringing numerous NCAA championship competitions to the Richmond area, including the 2007 NCAA Golf Championship, the 1992 NCAA Field Hockey Championship, the 1994 NCAA Women’s Basketball Final Four, the 2000 Women’s Basketball East Regional Championship, and the 2000 NCAA Women’s Volleyball Championship. Additionally, VCU has hosted national championship events in men’s basketball, tennis and golf.

      Sander also created, developed and implemented the nationally recognized Villa 7 program that helps prepare the next generation of head basketball coaches. Since its creation in 2002, over 50 current head basketball coaches have come through Villa 7 including Anthony Grant (Dayton), Shaka Smart (Texas), Buzz Williams (Virginia Tech), John Groce (Akron) and Josh Pastner (Georgia Tech).

      While at VCU, Sander created the VCU SportsCenter, an innovative graduate program that offers a master’s degree in sport leadership. The SportsCenter provides students the opportunity to receive practical, hands-on experience in the sport industry.

      Sander retired as the Director of Athletics from VCU in 2006 but remained as director of the SportsCenter until 2008 and later founded Docdi Consulting, LLC, which specializes in brand-enhancement initiatives and strategic planning working with such programs as Gonzaga, George Mason, Western Kentucky and the Colonial Athletic Association.

      Sander began his career as head basketball coach at Howard High School in Chattanooga from 1970-1971 and later as an assistant at the University of Tennessee-Chattanooga. In 1972, he moved to Cincinnati to serve as head basketball coach at Anderson High School, a post he held until 1982 when he became Assistant Athletic Director and was responsible for athletic fundraising at Memphis State University (now The University of Memphis). In 1986, he left Memphis to take the job at VCU. His duties expanded in 1994 when he assumed the title of assistant to the president.

      Sander earned a B.S. in Business Administration from the University of Tennessee-Chattanooga in 1968. He received a M.S. in Physical Education from Xavier University in 1974, and a Ph.D. in Education from the University of Cincinnati in 1980.