Sports, Events, Tourism, & Recreation

Are you interested in a career related to sports, events, hospitality, tourism, parks & recreation, or the outdoors? Do you want to focus on business aspects, design, and management of programs that improve quality of life through enjoyment of sport and leisure activities? You can enhance health, happiness, and well-being through organizations and programs where people live, work, and play.


Set Your Course

Career paths in this career community are diverse. Upon graduation, you may seek employment with collegiate or professional sports organizations, in the business world, tourism and hospitality management, in state and local parks and recreation settings, in health care management, recreation therapy, government public health, community and non-profit organizations, universities, and research centers.

Key Skills

Business, marketing, management, sales, budgeting, problem-solving, people-oriented, effective communication, public speaking, planning and implementation, evaluation, operations, customer service, teamwork, adaptability, cultural awareness, multi-tasking, language skills, professionalism, attention to detail

Common Majors

Explore Options

  • I am goal-oriented, self-motivated and want to work in professional or college sports.
    • The most common entry-level positions in professional sports are as sales agents for individual tickets, group sales, or season ticket sales. They are supervised by sales managers who direct sales teams. The managers set sales goals, analyze data, and develop training programs for an organization’s sales representatives. Sales managers may be required to travel, and they often have to work additional hours on evenings and weekends. Most sales managers have a bachelor’s degree and previous work experience as a sales representative.

  • I want to use my creativity to promote a sports team, organization, or product.
    • Marketing is a vital part of the sports industry. Sport marketing may be done for a sports team, league, athletic/entertainment venue, or university. Additionally, many graduates find employment outside of sports teams working for corporations that sponsor sporting events or teams. Advertising, promotions, and marketing managers plan programs to generate interest in products or services. They work with art directors, sales agents, and financial staff members. A bachelor’s degree is required for most positions.

  • I want to take care of venues and play a role in planning events within those spaces.
    • Facilities operations managers take care of physical spaces and are often part of the team that plans events taking place within the space. This can include large-scale sporting venues such as stadiums or arenas.  They plan, direct, and coordinate services of an organization. Their specific responsibilities vary, but they typically maintain facilities and supervise business activities. Although educational requirements for facilities managers vary by the type of organization and the work they do, they usually have a bachelor’s degree and must have significant, related work experience.

  • I want to use my writing skills to enhance the public image of a sports team or organization.
    • Media and public relations specialists create the message for sports organizations and maintain a favorable public image for the organization they represent. They craft media releases and develop social media programs to shape public perception of their organization and to increase awareness of its work and goals. Public relations specialists usually work in offices. Some attend community activities or events. Public relations specialists typically need a bachelor’s degree in public relations, journalism, communication, business, or a related field.

  • I want to work directly with athletes.
    • Coaches teach amateur or professional athletes the skills they need to succeed at their sport. Scouts look for new players and evaluate their skills and likelihood for success at the college, amateur, or professional level. Many coaches also are involved in scouting. Coaches and scouts often work irregular hours, including evenings, weekends, and holidays. They travel frequently. Coaches and scouts typically need a bachelor’s degree. They also must have extensive knowledge of the game.

  • I want to coordinate plans for events such as fundraising galas, weddings, conferences & professional meetings.
    • Consider becoming a meeting, convention, and event planner.  They arrange locations, schedules, vendors, and other details. They may work out of an office or onsite at a venue. They often travel to events and meeting sites. Most positions require a bachelor’s degree.

  • I want to ensure that guests on vacation or business travel have a pleasant experience with their hotel accommodations.
    • Consider becoming a lodging manager. They also ensure that the business is run efficiently and with high standards. Most lodging managers hold a bachelor’s degree and seek experience in the field through work experience or an internship.

  • I want to design and lead activities to help people enjoy recreational activities and empower them to live well.
    • Consider becoming a recreation worker. They are employed in a variety of settings including community centers, summer camps, parks, sports venues, and senior care facilities. Time may be spent indoors or outdoors depending on the work setting and responsibilities. Managerial and supervisory roles also exist within recreation settings. The level of education required varies by role within the organization.

  • I am passionate about the environment and want to see people engage more fully with outdoor environments.
    • Majors in our Health & Wellness Design department are ideal for those with a passion for natural areas, public parks, public lands, and open spaces. You’ll learn tools for managing the interactions between people and outdoor environments, as well as ecological sustainability theory and practice that you’ll be able to apply directly to the field.

Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor, Occupational Outlook Handbook, on the Internet at, visited June 2022.

The outcomes on this page are filtered to common majors found within this specific career community. For a full view of outcomes across all programs and degrees in the IU School of Public Health-Bloomington, explore the Outcomes page.


Career Outcomes

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First Destination

First Destination represents the post-graduation status of students within 6 months following graduation from the IU School of Public Health-Bloomington. Successful outcomes include: Employment or post-graduation fellowship, continuing education, military service, or volunteer service.

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