The Charger Blog

University Establishes First International Sport Management Collaboration

Beginning in the fall of 2024, the University of New Haven will host more than a dozen full-time students from European University of Madrid, welcoming them to the University community and enabling them to take advantage of myriad opportunities the University and the American sport industry have to offer.

June 15, 2022

By Renee Chmiel, Office of Marketing and Communications

University of New Haven sport management students enjoy a variety of immersive and exciting experiences in and out of the classroom.
University of New Haven sport management students enjoy a variety of immersive and exciting experiences in and out of the classroom.

Throughout the nearly 10 years Ceyda Mumcu, Ph.D., has taught sport management at the University of New Haven, she has created countless immersive and exciting experiences for her students. She is now helping to create a unique experience that would bring together sport management students from the University and from European University of Madrid (UEM).

An associate professor of sport management and chair of the University’s Sport Management Department, Dr. Mumcu is developing the sport management program’s first collaboration with a foreign university. Beginning in the 2024-25 academic year, the University will welcome more than a dozen students from Spain to spend the academic year at the University as full-time students.

“We’re going to utilize our networks and relationships to support their professional growth during their time at the University,” said Dr. Mumcu. “I think this will be eye-opening for our Spanish students, and it will create great learning experiences for everyone.”

‘Strong program…great strategic location’

The UEM students will become part of the University community, living on campus, taking sport management courses, and experiencing everything the University has to offer. They will also complete an internship, enjoying access to the University’s close proximity to opportunities in cities such as Boston and New York, as well as its alumni base. That, says José Bonal, Ph.D., global sport management bachelor’s degree academic coordinator for UEM, was among the reasons why UEM was so excited to collaborate with the University.

“We chose the University of New Haven based on their strong program and great strategic location,” he said. “Our program seeks to develop future sport managers who are well-rounded global individuals who have learned through experiences with different nationalities and countries. We believe the best way to understand the sport industry should be by providing experiences in Europe and the U.S., since, historically, Europe is a key market, and, in terms of sport-entertainment, the U.S. is the market leader by far.”

Ceyda Mumcu, Ph.D., an associate professor of sport management.
Ceyda Mumcu, Ph.D., an associate professor of sport management.
‘Focus on business acumen’

The University will host students from UEM each year, creating opportunities for countless students to explore the sport industry while growing as global citizens.

“The Pompea College of Business looks forward to an exceptional collaboration with the European University of Madrid,” said Brian Kench, Ph.D., dean of the Pompea College of Business. “Students from UEM will have the unique opportunity of interning with U.S.-based sport industries and completing coursework at the University of New Haven, while the Sport Management Department has the opportunity to expand its impact across the globe.”

Dr. Mumcu says the sport industry in Spain differs from that in the U.S. in several important ways. Spain, she says, has two of the top brands in the world – soccer teams Real Madrid and FC Barcelona – as well as a well-established soccer industry. While soccer dominates the industry in Europe and in Spain, the American industry has a different focus.

“We have a more established focus on business acumen in positions and on the requirements for individuals filling them,” explains Dr. Mumcu. “We provide our students with the proper skillset and experience to fill these positions. This will provide great opportunities for UEM students to experience the American perspective and how we approach the industry, which is more business-oriented. It is very much focused on generating revenue and exploring new avenues for revenue generation, including fan engagement, consumer relations, and social media.”

‘An exceptional opportunity’

Excited about the opportunities to help students grow as global citizens, University of New Haven faculty, who have added a new “Globalization of Sport” course for undergraduate students of any major, are excited about the opportunities the collaboration will create for students. Dr. Mumcu says having the UEM students in the classroom will also be exciting for American and other international students, since it will enable everyone to exchange ideas and perspectives.

“I think this is an exceptional opportunity,” she said. “I come from a European background, and the students are close to my own experience in terms of football fandom and behavior.

“When we talk about soccer in Europe and fan behavior in the classroom, for example, it is very different for our students,” she continued. “They often leave the course with a new appreciation for those teams. Having students from Spain in the classroom will only make it more vivid and real for students to experience, and I think that will be very exciting.”