New Majors Expand Options for Elmhurst Students

July 14, 2014 | by the Office of Marketing and Communications

The global sports industry is on a serious winning streak, with revenues growing steadily in recent years.

Now Elmhurst College is adding a new major in sport management to prepare students for careers in this rapidly growing field.

The sport management major joins another new major—music performance—on the College’s menu of academic offerings. Elmhurst now offers 59 majors in fields ranging from accounting to urban studies.

The sport management major serves a growing number of students interested in athletics-oriented careers. According to PricewaterhouseCoopers, the global sports industry is expected to grow to $145.3 billion in revenues by 2015.

“There is very strong interest in this major,” said Professor Charles Goehl, chair of the Department of Kinesiology. He said his office has received a stream of inquiries from current and prospective students about the program. “Our hope is to enroll 50 to 75 students in the major eventually.”

The program will draw on courses in business, kinesiology and communications. Courses in sport psychology, marketing, coaching, sales and business communication are among the required classes.

“In many ways this major is a natural for our college and our mission. We like to create programs that are interdisciplinary and that combine the liberal arts with professional preparation,” Goehl said.

The sport management major aims to prepare students for a wide range of jobs related to sports and recreation, including positions in sales, public relations, facility management, sports tourism, event planning and community recreation. Experiential learning is a key part of the program, with students gaining valuable experience through internships, shadowing experiences and mentorships. Elmhurst students have worked as interns with the Chicago Blackhawks, Chicago White Sox, Special Olympics, sports-talk radio station The Score, the Chicago Bandits, Elmhurst Park District and many other sports-related sites.

Music Performance Major
The major in music performance is designed for students who wish to pursue a career in music performance or do graduate study in the field. The program, which leads to a bachelor of music degree, requires students to complete the Elmhurst College Integrated Curriculum; the music core curriculum; a rigorous program of applied music study; and coursework in performance, literature, pedagogy and music business.

“It is a very concentrated program, one that gives students the chance to work side by side with our faculty every day,” said Professor Peter Griffin, chair of the Department of Music. “Our faculty are very active as professional performers themselves, and their mentorship makes a real difference in the education of our students.”

Candidates for the major must pass an audition for admittance into the department as part of the college application process. They then must pass another audition to continue as a performance major at the end of the sophomore year, or during the first term of enrollment for transfer students. Juniors and seniors give recitals as required capstone projects.

Student performers at Elmhurst have earned international recognition for excellence. The Elmhurst College Jazz Band was named Best Large Jazz Ensemble by DownBeat magazine in its annual national student music awards this year. Composer and trumpeter Jon Rarick received an Outstanding Performance award for his piece, “Blues for a Nearly Perfect Line.”  The College’s Concert Choir regularly tours nationally and last year was featured in a public television broadcast of A Christmas Carol: The Concert.

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