ATLANTA—The Georgia State University Sport Administration program, National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) and Atlanta Basketball Host Committee (ABHC) are collaborating on a series of academic initiatives focused on sport event management slated for spring 2020.
In April 2020, the NCAA and ABHC will host the NCAA Division I Men’s Basketball Final Four™, as well as the Division II and III Men’s Basketball Championships. Three champions will be crowned over a three-day span in Atlanta.
Through the partnership, the Sport Administration program students will benefit from a series of learning opportunities from the NCAA and ABHC. The Sport Administration academic program is known for its commitment to experiential learning and this partnership provides another opportunity for students to be involved in major sporting events impacting Atlanta.
“This program is a positive reminder of the off-the-court impact the Final Four has on its host community and member institutions,” said Dan Gavitt, vice president of men’s basketball for the NCAA. “We look forward to working with Georgia State University and their students to create a memorable and impactful program that will hopefully benefit the students for years to come.”
The centerpiece of the partnership is a new special topics Sport Event Management graduate course, which focuses on the logistics of planning large-scale events, from the bid process to event execution. The class will feature industry speakers from the NCAA and ABHC, and behind-the-scenes learning opportunities with tours of State Farm Arena and Mercedes-Benz Stadium, where the championships will be held. Students will be an integral part of the April events, serving as volunteer Point Guards for the NCAA Men’s Basketball Final Four, as well as the Division II, III Men’s Basketball Championships.
“Atlanta is a thriving sports city, and it’s giving our students yet another opportunity to learn about what it takes to put on a world-class sporting event,” said Assistant Professor Tim Kellison. “What will make this course especially valuable for students is the knowledge they’ll gain while working alongside professionals from the NCAA and host committee. That experience is not something that can be easily duplicated in a classroom.”
To kick off the spring semester, the Sport Administration program, NCAA and ABHC will hold a speaker event on campus during the first week of classes. The free student event will be held on Tuesday, Jan. 14, from 5-7 p.m. in the Georgia State Speaker’s Auditorium, feature three panels and more than a dozen speakers from the NCAA and ABHC. Sport Administration students will work on the planning of the event and moderating the sessions. More details will be distributed on our social media pages and website in advance of the event.