Bachelor of Business Administration in Sport and Recreation Management

Learn how to deliver opportunity with a sport and recreation management degree

The Marian University Bachelor of Business Administration in Sport and Recreation Management program aims to expand a student’s knowledge of sport and recreation management in order to emerge ready for a variety of career opportunities or graduate study.

Whether you’re an active participant in athletics or enjoy watching the game, we will help you take your passion and translate it into a successful career.

Graduate prepared to work in a team environment and confident to take your academic knowledge and apply it as you advance through your career.

Train for a career in the sports, recreation, or fitness industry.

What Will You Learn with a Degree in Sport and Recreational Management?

  • Gain a thorough understanding of the foundations of sports and recreation through marketing, management, law, and leadership courses.
  • Connect classroom learning with the world of work through exercises, projects, and internships.
  • Get exposure across the spectrum, whether it’s intramural, intercollegiate, or professional sports.
  • Learn new skills such as Adventure Programming, where you will develop and lead initiatives for both youth and adults. Initiatives build communication, problem-solving, and leadership skills in participants.
  • Understand how sport and recreation facilities are managed with an emphasis on parks, golf courses, swimming centers, sport complexes, tennis centers, community centers, and athletic fields.
  • Choose an optional business minor to study a single business discipline more in-depth. Minors include business administration, information technology, management, or marketing.

Build a Solid Foundation

“Visiting Marian, seeing its commitment on the education side and athletic side really drew me to it, and the program ended up giving me a lot of great insight. It helped me separate myself and made me stand out.

Billy Fries – 1998 Marian University Graduate, Milwaukee Brewers Senior Director of Ticket Sales

Explore a Sport and Recreation Management Degree

A business degree from Marian University opens the door for a career with any company, in any industry.  Choose a specialty in sport and recreation management, business administration, marketing, marketing and public relations, accounting, healthcare administration, management information systems, or finance. Professors bring topics to life through their real world experience in running companies and managing staff. Courses teach you about businesses not only from a local/regional perspective but also from an interconnected global perspective. Discuss current events and how to survive and thrive in different economic conditions. Whatever your major, participate in an internship where you spend between 150 and 300 hours at a business either in the U.S. or abroad.

As a business student, you will take general education courses alongside students from all Marian bachelor programs.  Then you will take a core of business courses and courses specific to your concentration.  If you are not sure what business major is for you, reach out to our Center for Academic Support and Excellence (CASE).  They have tools to help you choose a business degree based on your interests and abilities.

BBA in Sport and Recreation Management Curriculum

Students in the Bachelor of Business Administration in Sport and Recreation Management program gain knowledge about the sport and recreation industry and traditional business and legal principles. All engage in a curriculum centered on developing student skills in critical thinking, communication, cultural awareness, creativity, and technology. Students take courses that integrate all aspects of business, including accounting, economics, finance, law, management, and marketing.

General Education Courses

As a bachelor’s level student, you are required to take about 30 credits of general education courses as part of the 120 credits required for a bachelor’s degree.  Gen eds are required regardless of your major.

All students take 10.5 to 17 credits in these areas:

  • Mathematical Reasoning
  • Argumentative and Research Writing
  • Introduction to Christian Theology
  • Interpersonal Communication
  • Introduction to Ethical Reasoning
  • First Year Studies

Core Courses

Sport and recreation management majors will take courses covering topics such as:

  • Management of sport and recreation facilities
  • Sport and recreation programming
  • Legal issues in sport and recreation management
  • Leadership in sport management
  • Strategy and policy

Learning Outcomes

  • Students will possess an integrated knowledge of business functions and systems.
  • Students will possess effective, written communications skills.
  • Students will possess effective oral communications skills.
  • Students will be able to effectively apply critical thinking skills to business problems.
  • Demonstrate an understanding of the management approaches that relate to sport and recreation programming, along with the ability to depict the social forces that influence and shape it.
  • Be able to explain, research, cite evidence, and advance recommendations for some of the major problems confronting sport and recreation leadership.
  • Describe the basic aspects of sport and recreation law that includes sport governance, athlete health and safety negligence issues, and sport-based labor and employment law by analyzing case studies and advancing alternative responses to problems presented.
  • Evaluate the field of sport and recreation management and identify several career opportunities that students might pursue upon graduation.
  • Assess the management competencies necessary regarding the successful daily operation and control of sport and recreation facilities.

The BBA in Sport and Recreation Management program stimulates critical thinking in the application of academic theory to planning and implementation of recreation and sports activities. Students apply social justice, leadership, marketing, legal, and management principles to achieve safe sport and recreation programming, facilities, fundraising, and entertainment.

Professional Standards in Business
Outcomes Assessment – The academic business unit has developed and fully implemented an outcomes assessment process consistent with their mission and broad-based goals.

Strategic Planning – The academic business unit has developed and implemented a strategic planning process that enables continuous improvement and guides it into the future consistent with its mission.

Curriculum – Programs offered are consistent with current, acceptable business practices and the expectations of professionals in the academic and business communities.

Faculty – Appropriate program coverage is provided by highly-qualified faculty with adequate time to devote to teaching, service, and scholarly activity.

Scholarly and Professional Activities – Faculty members are involved in scholarly and professional activities that enhance the depth and scope of their knowledge.

Resources – Financial resources available are sufficient to support a high-quality learning environment.

Internal and External Relationships – The academic business unit has effective working relationships with other functional units within the institution, meaningful linkages to business practitioners and organizations, effective relationships with external organizations, and is accountable to the public.

International Business Education – The academic business unit ensures that students possess the knowledge, skills, and abilities to understand and deal effectively with critical issues in a dynamic global business environment.

Educational Innovation – The academic business unit maintains an environment that encourages and recognizes innovation and creativity in the education of business students.

Professional Conduct (Standard for Students)

Faculty and staff in the Business Department in the College of Professions expect the highest standards of honest, ethical professional conduct from each of our students. Primary components of professional behavior expected include:

  • Respect for others
  • Full engagement
  • Responsibility and integrity, and commitment to quality

As a graduate of the BBA in Sport and Recreation Management program, you will find increasing opportunities for leadership and lucrative employment, especially in the ever-changing business world. Sport and Recreation Management program graduates are qualified to work in a wide variety of areas, including corporate fitness, professional and amateur sports organizations, recreation programming, sport facility management, and sports marketing.

Sport & Recreation Management

Outcome: Knowledge Acquisition – Business
Measure: Peregrine CPC Comp Exam


Marian Baseline Target = 50 %-ile (51.9% correct)
Comparison (IACBE schools) = 50%-ile (51.9% correct)
Marian Stretch Goal = 80%-ile (62.5% correct)
Marian Average achieved = 78%-ile (59.9% correct)
Marian Highest Achieved = 98%-ile (79% correct)


On average, Marian students performed higher than the IACBE comparison average.
Almost half of Marian students performed in the top 20 percent nationally (45%).
In general, students have good knowledge of business concepts as measured by the CPC-Comp.

Outcome: Integrated Knowledge of Business
Measure: CAPSIMBusiness Simulation


Standard: Balanced Scorecard – Standard = at/above National average (50th %-ile)
Stretch Goal: Balanced Scorecard – Standard = at/above 80th %-ile
Marian Achieved = All teams above average except 1. (Range: 16th to 96th %-ile)
Marian Stretch Goal Achieved: 44% of teams at or above 80%


94% of Marian teams achieved results at or above the national average compared with others teams.
44% of Marian teams achieved the stretch goal performing at or above the 80thpercentile.
In general, students do well in the simulation, demonstrating integrated knowledge of business.

Recent graduates have held internships in places such as:

  • Baseball Info Solutions
  • Camp Menoninee
  • CERA Park
  • Chicago Cubs @ Wrigley Field
  • Evolution Hockey
  • FDL Boys & Girls Club
  • FDL Youth Sports
  • Madison Mallards
  • Mascoutin Golf Club
  • Milwaukee Admirals
  • North Lake Recreation Club
  • PGA of America

Through an applied learning approach, you’ll find BBA in Sport and Recreation Management program prepares you to achieve your personal and professional goals in the business field. You’ll be inspired by personal, one-on-one attention from expert faculty, who are dedicated to sharing their knowledge and skills to keep you one step ahead of the competition.

Criteria for Undergraduate Business Students
A student who meets Marian University admission standards and who declares a business major must comply with the following standards at each class level:

Freshman Criteria (for students with at least 30 credits completed)
Students should have completed the following with a minimum grade of C:

  • ENG 101 or ENG 105

Students must maintain a cumulative GPA of at least 2.00

Sophomore Criteria (for students with at least 60 credits completed)
Students should have completed the following with a minimum grade of C:

  • ENG 151 or ENG 106
  • MAT 111 or MAT 130 or MAT 132
  • BUA 210
  • Science lab(s)

Students must maintain a cumulative GPA of at least 2.00

Junior and Senior criterion (for students with at least 80 credits completed)
Students must maintain a cumulative GPA of at least 2.00

Failure to Meet Criteria
Any business student failing to meet these criteria is placed on probation. During the first semester of probation, students may continue taking business courses. If the student has failed to meet the criteria after one semester on probation, that student may only retake deficient classes and general education requirements.

Graduation Requirements
A business student is not allowed to graduate with a D+ or lower grade in any business course. If such a grade is recorded, the course must be retaken and a grade of C- or above must be achieved. All business students are required to take a comprehensive exit examination during the semester prior to graduation. Students pursuing more than one major in the business program must complete at least 15 credits of unique courses to count in each major. Students pursuing a minor must complete at least 9 credits of courses unique to the minor.

Internship Experience
The internship provides practical work experience related to the student’s career objective. All internships involve planned and supervised on-the-job training with interaction among the student, a faculty advisor, and a supervisor from the site of the internship. The student may complete the internship on a part- or full-time basis. Before the student begins their internship, they must consult with the internship coordinator in their respective discipline to review requirements and expectations.

Prior to the start of the internship, the site must be approved and a learning contract and supervisor agreement must be completed. Students are eligible to register for a 0-3 credit internship upon achieving junior status. Specific internship requirements such as number of hours, paperwork, and other assignments may differ depending on major. Students must consult with the program director and internship coordinator for these details and cannot register for the internship until authorized by the internship coordinator. Business students are required to complete a minimum of one internship experience regardless of the number of declared majors.