Last month, the George Washington School of Business (GWSB) launched the STAR EMBA program, an MBA degree specifically designed for athletes and sport professionals. It is the first fully accredited MBA degree in this field.
The “STAR” (Special Talent, Access and Responsibility) EMBA is designed to fit athletes’ busy schedules: taught in two-week modules, the program will take place in Washington DC, as well as in Los Angeles and New York. This allows students to experience business in different cities and to have access to business leaders, philanthropists and change makers throughout the United States.
In addition, the program provides access to a network of individuals and organizations that can help students expand their personal brand. And with the help of professors, mentors and coaches, students will be able to create their own personal business plan.
Many of the athletes enrolled in the STAR EMBA program, lack a higher education, having enrolled in undergraduate degrees but dropped out of school to pursue their sports careers. At GWSB, they will be able to work with advisors and mentors to map out a curriculum to finish their undergraduate degrees before beginning their MBA.
In addition, GWSB encourages athletes’ spouses to take part in the program, providing them with the same business skills, language and tools, which will help families to work together when taking their next steps.
Several athletes have already enrolled in the program, including current and retired professional American football players, such as Hannibal Navies, Samari Rolle and Duane Starks, and Olympic artistic gymnast Dominique Dawes.
“When I started playing in the NFL, I knew I wanted to one day go back and continue my education,” said Washington Redskins’ linebacker Rocky McIntosh. “I’ve got the opportunity now through the GW School of Business’ STAR EMBA program to do that in a way that fits with my schedule, provides me personal mentors and helps me use my current success to make a huge impact in the business world.”
“Customized programs such as STAR EMBA are the future of business education,” said Doug Guthrie, Dean of GWSB. “In the case of STAR EMBA, we are working with a very select group of professionals, who have a good deal of success and access to resources early in their careers, to become leaders and great contributors to their communities and society.”
“Business schools must be geared towards generating incredible outcomes for each of their students,” said Sanjay Rupani, Chief Strategy Officer for GWSB. “The true success of this program will ultimately show a few years after our students graduate, when they are well on their way toward building the future they have outlined for themselves.”
This is not the only sport-related business degree that GWSB offers. The school is internationally well-known for its focus on sport, with three of its MBA programs – Global MBA, Professional MBA, and Accelerated MBA – already offering a concentration in Sport Management.