UW Master of Education in Intercollegiate Athletic Leadership

The University of Washington’s Master of Education in Intercollegiate Athletic Leadership is a one-year program that prepares you for leadership positions within intercollegiate sports, offering two distinct tracks of study: IAL Administration and IAL Coaching. In this video, IAL alumni and the executive director discuss how this unique program can help you reach your career goals. Learn more at http://www.ial.washington.edu.

Video Transcript:

[Sara]
This is a unique program in that we really look at that intersection of education and sport and firmly believe that sport has a transformative power, when it’s done right, and that the collegiate environment is just a great place for student athletes to get to experience that potential.

[Josh]
One of the things that sparked me to pursue a master’s degree was just seeing the impact you can have at the community college level, working with those kids.

[Sara]
The two tracks in the program prepare sports administrators who might be working in any area with an athletic department. So it could be marketing, compliance, sport operations, development, student athlete services. And our second track is really more tightly focused folks that want to go into collegiate coaching.

[Daniela]
So what makes this program so unique is that it’s a one year accelerated program. And so that’s what really attracted to me to it in the first place, because over the course of one year, you get your master’s degree. And so there’s, it’s broken up where there’s an 8-week summer intensive program and then, followed by that, it’s distance learning.

[Sara]
So during the summer, our students come to Seattle and spend time together in a classroom and really get a firm sort of grounding in what we’re trying to do in terms of college athletics. During the academic year, they’re out at internship sites working in the, that area that they hope to enter. And what that lets them do is see what those daily challenges are, see what that daily activity is. And then [they] return to campus for an extended weekends or, for the coaches, the following summer in order to, again, finish up that academic piece.

[Josh]
One of the biggest strengths, I thought, of this program was just the diverse cohort that we had. We had soccer coaches, rowing coaches, we had a baseball coach, basketball coach. I think our dialogue in the class helped opening, open each other’s eyes.

[Sara]
They challenge each other, they learn from each other’s perspective and their own experiences. And we sort of tell them that that group is going to be your professional network as soon as you’re finished with the program.

[Daniela]
The caliber of faculty is absolutely amazing. They’re so invested in what you’re doing and how you’re doing.

[Josh]
They were all really, really great people. They each cared about the personal growth of the person they were impacting, of the person they were talking to at the time – whether it be myself or a classmate. And, the biggest things that we got from them, I think, were just their personal experience.

[Sara]
Today there’s a lot of folks that want to work in athletics. College athletics, professional athletics – really across the spectrum. And, in some ways, it’s a tough industry to break into. So we spend a lot of time working with students about building their professional network.

[Daniela]
And so over the course of the 8-weeks, we probably have about 20 to 30 guest speakers, and that alone just gives you even more extensive networking and so it just continues to build and build and build, and I think that I’m going to build relationships and maintain relationships that will last me a lifetime, hopefully.

[Sara]
So we currently have a number of students who were in our, some of our earlier classes who are now associate athletic directors or becoming senior athletic directors. So that’s exciting and, again, we always remind them that the other students coming up in the program who they can offer internships or jobs to, and that’s where that cohort and that network connection come into play.

[Josh]
I feel like the program has allowed me to grow and think more consciously of everything that a coach has a chance to impact. From his culture, from his team, from the people I work with, from even my family.

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