“[…] This programme has given me the competencies to attract sponsors for the cricket teams in my community who I work with every season to ensure the participation of youths in sport.
“I’ve gained much knowledge about attracting sponsors and marketing sport teams and about how to better manage the cricket teams I am involved with…”
What can UWI’s FIFA/CIES Programme in Sport Management do for you? Program coordinators from the University of the West Indies, St Augustine Campus asked several former students (1) how they benefitted from the programme, (2) their best memory, and (3) their comments about the programme:
Cleopatra Borel, three-time Olympic shot putter and former Trinidad and Tobago Sportswoman of the Year:
1) The program has impacted the manner in which I evaluate situations and holistic reasoning used to find plausible solutions. I discovered the world of sport is much more complex than anticipated and I had a lot to learn. The program was quite exhilarating because I quickly transferred theory to practical application.
The staff within the program are outstanding, providing the support necessary for students to excel. The program is also tailored to include a local perspective, which is great as ‘local’ is often overshadowed by international research and opinions. The course also exposed me to great contacts in the sporting fraternity, as well as the confidence to move forward in this field.
2) Presenting final group projects during our events management class was my highlight of the course. This is because I had the opportunity to incorporate a lot of the concepts and skills learnt during the program into the project.
3) The courses offered expanded my knowledge, competencies and skill in their respective subject areas, it sparked interest for further study—be that in a formal or informal setting. Today’s athletes need more than on-field experience and this program is proof.
I would recommend the program because it prepares students for the realities of sport administration. The combination of face to face and virtual classroom sessions was forward thinking and suited my schedule well.
In addition, the content was really tailored to student needs, especially the facility visits in our events management class.
Marsha Boyce, Caribbean Broadcasting Corporation research officer and Caribbean Regional Anti-Doping Organisation communications consultant:
1) The programme has been of tremendous value to me in terms of the content and subject areas offered. It enhanced my knowledge of the sporting industry, both regionally and internationally. Additionally, it allowed me to develop valuable professional contacts and be a part of a global network.
2) Among the highlights of the programme for me were the network lectures, which allowed us to gain face-to-face insight from various industry leaders and practitioners from across the globe without having to leave the Caribbean.
3) I always recommend and will continue to recommend this UWI/FIFA/CIES programme to anyone in the Caribbean who might be thinking of pursuing postgraduate studies in Sports Management.
Catherine John, physical education teacher:
1) It has added a lot of value. I am more knowledgeable in the content I pass on to my students and I am also more confident when imparting that content because of this programme. I am applying the knowledge gained from the programme to better organise and manage my school’s extra curricular programme as well as at my sport club. I am also hoping to use it to become a manager for one of our national teams.
2) It’s been so long. I can’t really think of a memory—but I did like meeting so many new, different and interesting people. I also remember enjoying the law and financial aspect of the course. As difficult as it was, I did enjoy it.
3) I think the course is a beneficial one for the development of sport in Trinidad and Tobago but I feel it would be even more beneficial if the university would partner with the various national sporting bodies, for the students to also get some hands on experience and maybe in the end employment.
Arnold Bassanoo, Ministry of Education clerk I:
1) This programme has given me the competencies to attract sponsors for the cricket teams in my community who I work with every season to ensure the participation of youths in sport. I’ve gained much knowledge about attracting sponsors and marketing sport teams and about how to better manage the cricket teams I am involved with.
I have also been able to attract other teams wanting my assistance in the management of football and cricket tournaments, since I finished the programme in 2019. Through this programme, I have interacted with many people from different sporting and cultural backgrounds which helped to broaden my outlook on the way sport should be administered.
2) It is very difficult to choose the best memory or highlight of this wonderful programme, however, I really enjoyed and learned a lot from the sports law classes and the disciplinary hearing group assignment. I could still remember my interview day for this programme, and what stood out for me from that day onwards was the kindness and willingness of the staff members attached to this programme. It made learning so much easier for me.
3) The programme is well organised and once students are willing to go the extra mile is only then you will see the true beauty of this programme. I would like to thank you for the opportunity to be part of this programme. I certainly have learned a lot and have some memories from this programme that would last me a lifetime.
Lima, Peru was a blast! Can’t wait for another trip with you all.
Amanda Ramcharan, Chaguanas South Secondary School physical education teacher III:
1) The programme has impacted my life in various ways that would and have indeed shaped and changed my outlook, so that I can impart knowledge onto my charges. I have learnt to explore different avenues and methods for reaching every child and utilising new forms of technologies and teaching and learning strategies, while form-fitting new educational strategies into our everyday lives.
It has opened various avenues for me to explore varying management positions, whereby I can use my new-found knowledge and processes to further enhance and develop the physical education aspects of other lives on a day to day basis.
2) The best memories and highlights of the programme were the actual visits to sites, where one can physical touch sporting complexes and sites to build that neurological connection. Once that gap has been fortified, everything automatically clicked together and the foundation was set for learning and growth of the mind and individual.
3) This program was an overall enhancement to my career, knowledge and growth in the education field as well as in my personal life; and towards building a greater generation that is equipped with the necessary tools to do better for future generations.
Amara Felix-Toussaint, North Zonal Council secretary and Trinidad & Tobago Cricket Board member:
1) The programme gave me an avenue to progress in my Master’s in Sport Management. The CIES/FIFA/UWI endorsement on a certificate gives an added respect that is priceless in the sport industry.
2) The highlight of this programme for me was definitely the network and professional friendships that were formed during this learning period. Many of those I still reach out to when I run into any challenges at work.
3) This programme not only provided a foundation of knowledge in sport management but also an alliance of peers in the industry.
Sachin J Maraj, UWI Open Campus and St Joseph’s College head physical education teacher, Trinidad and Tobago Football Referee, Blue Streak Athletics head coach and St Michael’s Catholic Men’s Movement PRO:
1) This programme has added value to me as a teacher because it allowed me to have a deeper appreciation about the workings and process of sports outside of a classroom. It incited me to use a holistic approach to teaching physical education.
There were countless benefits from this program to my current position. I developed skills and concepts in the fields of management, finance, marketing and law related to sport. I was then able to market physical education in my school and sporting programs within my community.
This program allowed me to host the first ever Secondary Schools Futsal Tournament (Top 6), which was held by the University of the West Indies Open Campus students as a national project.
As a coach, it allowed me to see the practical fusion of business within the sporting world. This program assisted me to form partnerships with local boards such as TTFA. This program also gave me the motivation to start my own sport business in the future.
2) On any journey, there will be memories that stand out and you will keep for a lifetime—the same applies with this program. One memory which stood out to me were the field trips involved, especially when we visited the National Aquatic Centre and partook in the learning to dive centre. This made me feel as if I was a child again!
The second memory which meant a lot to me was when we were given free tickets to a cricket final held at UWI SPEC. We drank cases of beer and shouted at the top of our lungs as our team won the tournament.
3) This program made me understand what true friendship is and how to finish a full project in under 24 hours. Always remember diamonds are made under pressure.
Calisia Gregoire, UWI/FIFA/CIES Sports Management Programme coordinator
1) The UWI/FIFA/CIES Postgraduate Diploma in Sports Management programme was an excellent stepping stone to gaining a holistic approach to understanding the mechanics of Sport Management. With the emphasis on real-life application in the sport industry, I was able to apply the acquired fundamental principles of Sport Management at various sporting events, which contributed to my ever-growing knowledge and development in sport administration.
Now, I am the coordinator of the programme, encouraging persons to pursue it for added value and range of knowledge that can be absorbed and applied in their sporting profession.
The programme helped me focus on the direction of my career and also provided a lot of networking opportunities where I was able to volunteer at different sporting events.
I continue to provide assistance in coordinating and executing various sporting projects/events such as Bago Sports Media’s Annual Beach Soccer Tournament as the events/logistics manager. This lead me to become project manager with Lequay Edge Limited and assist in other various creative sporting events such as World of Dance, Cheer in Sun and Red Bull Neymar Jr’s 5 Football Tournament.
2) The best memory/highlight of the programme was the event management module, and the actual execution of an event from start to finish. That was the start of my love for events management, learning as much of the fundamental elements to plan, coordinate, and execute a sporting event.
With this module being the last within the programme, it outlined the importance of all the other modules and brought them together—sponsorship, sport marketing, human resource management, sport finance and facilities management.
Camara David, Caribbean Football Union (CFU) general secretary
1) The programme kicked-started my career in sport, particularly football; I was unemployed at the time. It was through networking and the connections made during the program that I started working at the Sport Company of Trinidad and Tobago, and the rest is history.
Today, I am the general secretary of the largest sub-confederation in football, the Caribbean Football Union, having been the general secretary of a semi-professional league, as well as the Trinidad and Tobago Football Association (TTFA).
Additionally, the programme has equipped me with the necessary tools needed to function to the best of my ability in my everyday duties. For example, the strategic planning course is presently assisting me in developing and creating a strategic plan for my organisation, while the financial course provided the necessary competence to understand financial statements, etc.
2) During my time, we were able to tour CNC3 headquarters, a major media local broadcaster, where we were given valuable insights into the importance of the role the media plays in communicating with our stakeholders.
3) The programme has adapted well to modern times with its blended learning format and ease of access in being online. It allows persons to be flexible, in that they can continue their professional lives and still be able to take courses.
Editor’s Note: The UWI/FIFA/CIES Sports Management programme runs from September 2020 while the first deadline for applicants is 10 July. Click HERE for more information.