Designed to enhance the skills of students at all levels of experience in the industry, the Master of Sports Leadership program prepares you to excel in diverse fields of sports-related occupations.
The practice-oriented Master of Sports Leadership is structured to accommodate mid-career athletic administrators and coaches, as well as individuals seeking to prepare for careers in the sports industry. Developed in collaboration with Northeastern University's Center for the Study of Sport in Society, the Master of Sports Leadership prepares you for a variety of sport-related occupations—whether it’s working with a professional or intercollegiate sports team, with a fitness club or wellness organization, or in marketing, communication, or sports management. Courses within this unique graduate degree examine the social and business issues that are critical to sports leadership. Offered in an online format with an intensive one-week summer institute in Boston, this degree provides you with a well-rounded educational experience—equipping you to advance your career in the sports industry.
Benefits of a Northeastern Sports Leadership Master's Degree
- Practice oriented degree offering hands-on experience, internship, and capstone project
- Option to take part in integrated experiential learning
- Choose from concentrations for a specialized focus on professional or collegiate athletics
- Boston Location on flagship campus, a hub for business, healthcare, education, finance, biotechnology, and the life sciences
- Identify your leadership styles and strengths and take steps to improve your leadership capacity
- Understand what it takes to build highly effective teams
- Obtain approaches and techniques for effectively tackling ethical dilemmas
- Explore the legal issues related to equipment use, facility management, and accommodation for special populations
- Learn how to leverage sports for greater social and economic good
- Examine the planning, scheduling, and financial issues associated with running a successful athletics program
- Discover how to use sports to foster diversity, prevent violence, and improve the health of local and global communities
The Commission on Sport Management Accreditation is a specialized accrediting body whose purpose is to promote and recognize excellence in sport management education worldwide in colleges and universities at the baccalaureate and graduate level.
Already a multi-billion-dollar field, the sports industry is projected to experience faster-than-average growth over the next several years. Located all over the country, sports-related organizations and businesses require a variety of educated and skilled employees to manage day-to-day operations. While knowledge is crucial, success is often contingent upon your willingness to work beyond 9-5—with many sporting events and related activities taking place on nights, weekends, and holidays. The sports industry is exciting—filled with people who are driven by a passion for what they do and who are extremely satisfied with their career choice.
Ashleigh G., Program Graduate
Our admissions process operates on a rolling basis, however we do recommend following the application guidelines below to ensure you can begin during your desired start term. If you are an international applicant, please view our international application deadlines.
Fall Term A:
Start date: September 18
Recommended Admissions Deadline: September 8
Fall Term B:
Start date: October 30
Recommended Admissions Deadline: September 18
Winter Term A:
Start date: January 9
Recommended Admissions Deadline: November 28
Winter Term B:
Start date: February 21
Recommended Admissions Deadline: January 9
Spring Term A:
Start date: April 10
Recommended Admissions Deadline: February 27
Spring Term B:
Start date: May 22
Recommended Admissions Deadline: April 10
Summer Term A:
Start date: July 10
Recommended Admissions Deadline: May 29
Summer Term B:
Start date: August 7
Recommended Admissions Deadline: June 26
- Online application
- Statement of purpose (500–1000 words): identifies your educational goals and expectations of the program; please be aware that the University's academic policy on plagiarism applies to your statement of purpose
- Professional resume
- Official undergraduate transcripts: must be provided in a stamped and sealed envelope from the institution(s), stating degree conferral and date
- Two letters of recommendation: from individuals who have either academic or professional knowledge of your capabilities such as a faculty member, colleague, or mentor, preferably one from your current employer
- English Language Proficiency Proof: students for whom English is not their primary language must submit one of the following:
- Official associate or bachelor's degree transcript from an accredited college or university in the U.S, stating degree conferral and date
- TOEFL, IELTS, or NU Global Exam scores
45 total quarter hours required.
Note: Sport in Society (LDR 6405) and Sports Media Relations (LDR 6441) are summer institute courses, available on-campus in Boston. Winter institute course available on campus in Charlotte, North Carolina.
Complete one of the following. This course should be the last course taken and requires faculty advisor approval:
Choose two of the following:
Choose one from the following:
Northeastern's signature experiential learning model combines academics with professional practice to help students acquire relevant, real-world skills they can apply to their desired industry. Each program offers its own unique experiential learning opportunities, but they might include:
- Experiential Learning at Work — Working professionals collaborate with their employer to develop a project that addresses a key business need their company has in an area they want familiarity with.
- Experiential Network (XN) — Students work virtually with a sponsoring organization on a short-term project over a six-week period.
- Full-Time Co-op Opportunities — Students on co-op work in a paid position in their field of study for three to six months.
Our faculty represents a wide cross-section of professional practices and in fields ranging from finance to education to biomedical science to management to the U.S. military. They serve as mentors and advisors, and collaborate alongside students to solve the most pressing global challenges facing established and emerging markets.
By enrolling in Northeastern, you gain access to a network of more than 230,000 alumni and 3,000 employer partners, including Fortune 500 companies, government agencies, and global NGOs. Our current students and faculty across strategically located regional campuses further foster that lifelong global community of learning and mentoring.
Below is a look at where our Sports Leadership alumni work, the positions they hold, and the skills they bring to their organization.
Where They Work
- Boston Celtics
- Boston Red Sox
- Boston Bruins
- New England Patriots
- NFL, NBA, MLB, NHL, MLS, MLL
- Colleges and Universities
- International Olympic Committees
- High School Athletics
- Youth Sport Organizations
- Non-Profit Sport Organizations
What They Do
- Athletic Administration
- Community and Social Services
What They're Skilled At
- Event Management
- Athletic Development
- Operations Management
- Use of Technology and Social Media
Learn more about Northeastern Alumni on Linkedin.