In February 2023, Suffolk University announced a multi-year partnership with the 17-time NBA champion Boston Celtics. It’s a major component of the Sawyer Business School’s new interdisciplinary Sports Management program that will give students the opportunity to immerse themselves in the sports, marketing, and consulting industries and gain real-world experience in the business of sports.
Since the launch, students have had the opportunity to work on challenges and opportunities relating to the Celtics’ business that focus on growing a team’s reach with fans, potential business partners, and in the community. Students toured the Celtics corporate offices in nearby TD Garden, then exchanged ideas with executives about the business of basketball. Later in the spring, the Celtics and marketer Vista came to campus to share insights on their partnership and their Power Forward Small Business Grant. Students were presented with a challenge around the grant program and gave solutions-based presentations to executives from both companies.
“This new relationship exemplifies how we utilize our distinctive downtown Boston location and our multidisciplinary programs to create transformational and immersive educational experiences,” said Amy Zeng, dean of the Sawyer Business School. “It is sure to inspire our sports management students as they learn to leverage the power of sports to impact not only the bottom line but also to create positive community impact.”
Ted Dalton, chief partnership officer for the Boston Celtics, said, “We’re honored to be able to team up with Suffolk University to support a comprehensive and contemporary program that helps develop the next generation of sports business leaders.”
“This new relationship exemplifies how we utilize our distinctive downtown Boston location and our multidisciplinary programs to create transformational and immersive educational experiences."
The new Sports Management program
The Sawyer Business School is the only AACSB-accredited business school in Boston to offer an interdisciplinary Sports Management program, which, starting in fall 2023, will provide students with a diverse background that encompasses marketing, analytics, entrepreneurship, finance, economics, law, and ethics. Students will learn from seasoned sports industry practitioners and academic scholars, benefit from their industry contacts, and make sense of their learning through immersive experiences that include taking advantage of Suffolk’s unique proximity to the Celtics headquarters and other locations.
Kaylie Groom, Class of 2026 and a member of the University’s indoor track & field team, says she always knew she wanted to do something with the business of sports in her career. She started at the Business School in the fall of 2022 as a marketing major. But once the sports management major was announced, she immediately knew she was going to double major to develop more of the skills she needs to succeed in her career.
“This is kind of perfect for me,” she says. “More of my interests are going to be geared toward the major, and the experience I gain from it will be huge going into the workforce.”