Meet Online Master’s of Athletic Administration student Matthew Welsh

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The Ohio University online Master’s in Athletic Administration program specializes in developing interscholastic Athletic Directors, building on the students’ passion for serving young student-athletes and running a highly-successful athletic department. Ohio University is the pioneer in sports education. By establishing the first academic program in the field of sports administration, this online program is recognized today as the premier professional training program for candidates seeking careers in the sports industry.

Watch the webinar below for more information about the program and hear from current student Matthew Welsh.


Yes hello. Good afternoon everyone my name is Trevor Goodsworth with the Ohio University and today we’re going to be going over the online masters in athletic administration webinar. We’re going to cover some different things regarding the webinar we have a specialguest today Matthew Welsh, who’s a current student in the program he’s going to be giving you some background and insight in theprogram and you know his personal background whatnot. And then we’ll cover the admissions requirements and then go over, you know, how you guys can get in touch with us if you have any questions and I will save any and all questions towards the end of the webinar as well. and we’ll have a Q&A at the very end of this but let’s go right into it. First I’d like you to meet our current student Matthew Welsh class of 2020 he has joined us today.

Hello Matthew. I’d like to get if you don’t mind tell our students foregone future students who are listening a little bit about your background and where you’ve come from and what you’ve been doing. Great thanks Trevor. Yeah names Matthew Welsh I live in Marysville, Ohio. Fairly new to the program we’re in our third course so looking forward to the next 20 or so months. Prior to deciding to come to this program I was actually in corporate America. I spent 20 years in corporate America working in sales operations and marketing with some Fortune 500 companies, however my passion has always been athletics and youth sports having grown up in a coach’s household. I was just always very close to me. As my daughters got older, I got more involved with local athletics here in Marysville. Including getting to know a couple of different athletic directors at our high school and the more I probed, the more I realized that this is really where my passion is. And after a downsizing at my last company I reached out to you actually. We had talked a couple of times over the years about this program and decided to dive in and make the jump to getting this particular degree.

Okay so let me ask you why did you choose this particular program? So this program being at Ohio University or athletic administration’s? Both. Okay so I knew it’s going to be athletic administration the more I got to know not only our local athletic directors and we had a switch in the last couple of years. So I worked with two, but also having friends in the field. I. I just had a come-to-jesus moment and it was it was where I wanted to go and as I started to look around for information OU’s program kept coming to the top of the list. I knew that I needed to be a virtual student living in Marysville. And also you know being a dad, husband here in town needed to be around. So it was a great option. It ended up coming down to Ohio University and another Ohio-based university and I just really liked the program, the details, the feedback that I was able to read online and also the customer service, the contacts the people answering my questions as I was getting more and more committed to the program.

And then also let me ask you what has been like a favorite or a positive experience for you while you’ve been in this program? It’s oddly enough, it’s been the it’s been the relationships that I’ve been able to create with my classmates, which is interesting because we’re virtual, but we’ve got. I’ve got two different text threads with two different groups of people, where we ask for feedback. We, you know, tell each other what sports we’re watching, you know, who we root for. Real camaraderie amongst my classmates. I’ve met people in Maine, we’ve got a classmate that is in China. I’ve got West Coast people in my text threads, but you know it’s school too so we have to look at the honest side of that we commiserate together as well. When we’ve got midnight deadlines and we’re all you know up burning the midnight oil to get things done. There have also been a couple of instructors in the program that that I’ve really enjoyed working with too, but mostly so far it’s been the people that I’m working with and the ability to connect with them even though we’re not in the same room.

Ok, so let me ask you this how do you find the the work/life balance so far in these classes? You know it’s interesting I did my MBA and it was a it was kind of a mix of online and then one night every two weeks we’d go into a classroom and this is a completely different experience. You do need to be committed to the different resources that’s provided by the program. Blackboard. Other communication vehicles and it is, it is not a lecture program. It is you know you’re doing a lot of reading, but you know overall. It’s you know, it’s a commitment to just getting the information that you need and getting it read and getting your assignments done on time.

Ok, how much time would you say you spend per week on studying roughly? It varies. I think you know I think the program quotes about 12 hours a week and I think on average that’s probably fair. There are weeks that it’s less than that. However I’m coming out of a week where it was definitely more than that and it really just comes down to kind of your style whether you can commit to a certain number of hours eat and night each night or if you need if you need to cram everything into a couple of days. I’ve worked probably as much as 16 or 17 hours in a class in a week, but then there have been weeks where it’s been considerably less than that. Just you know maybe maybe six to eight hours because there wasn’t an assignment due that particular week and you’re just doing some reading on your own.

Okay and overall how has it been with your interactions between you and your professors? You know we’ve had a number of different professors in three classes and I can tell you that there are some that are absolutely outstanding I almost feel like they’re sitting at their desk waiting to get a communication from me. And then there’s others that are more similar to what’s outlined in the syllabus where you know they need 24 hours to get back to you but but everybody is responsive. They give information. We actually try to push a lot of our questions regarding class work to the discussion board on Blackboard, so that even if we’re waiting for the professor’s to weigh in. Our classmates can see those questions and either wait for the answer or if they have an interpretation of what that answer is, they can chime in and help you through it. So but overall we you know we’ve got to kind of meet our professors through voicethread and so you know we’ve got a got a picture of them to, you know, put with a name and get to know them a little bit. Overall it’s been pretty good. Okay and then. In terms of you know the workload and usability and you know friendliness of everything in terms of Blackboard. I know we put you through an orientation. Do you find that to be pretty user friendly? I do. Being a little bit on the technical side myself I think that there’s some opportunities across different platforms for example the iPad and the like an iPhone, but if you are in front of your computer using the recommended browser it’s overall – it’s a good experience actually it’s a great experience if you’re on your desktop. If you need to rely on something like an iPad or an iPhone you’re going to you’re going to have a good experience but then you’re probably going to want to check back in on your desktop to see whether or not you’ve got all of the information. And that latter part is really specific to getting feedback on the documents that you’ve presented. So we put. We submit all of our documents to turn it in and the TurnItIn platform from reading comments and that type of stuff is not necessarily mobile friendly when you’re using the web format.

Okay so thus far what have you found to be your biggest challenge in this program? So far haven’t run into too many challenges. Getting to know one facilitator and then switching to another one and because these classes are shorter getting to know their style and understand where they’re putting information sometimes there’s a ramp up period for that. We shifted hard in this last class to a more legally based class. And some of those details and that was a big shift. The previous class wasn’t quite as detailed and then this was all hands on deck class.So we didn’t see that coming. The the transition wasn’t necessarily there, but overall we’ve had you know three solid classes with good information and a lot help from our facilitators.

Okay, so to conclude, what would you say you know to future students who are looking at this program and listening right now? You know like what kind of takeaways can you can you add to this webinar? Yeah I would I would start off by saying it is a full commitment. This is just like going to an in-house college program or going to college. Though you’re doing it from home and you have the flexibility of when you can do your work, you can’t skate by by thinking that you can just wing. There there’s there is reading involved and you really need to be disciplined and structured in setting aside time then that you’re going to do your work. I would recommend being proactive so you’re not waiting till due dates to get stuff done. Allowing time for questions, if you have them, to get them answered, but it’s it’s a great decision and it’s a great experience, but don’t don’t do it if you’re not fully committed to doing it.

Okay well thank you Matthew. We appreciate that. And I’m going to move into admissions requirements at this time. To get into the program, you do have to have a bachelor degree from a regionally accredited four-year college or university. Cumulative undergraduate GPA of 2.75 scale in the last 60 semester hours. If it’s a little bit lower, there’s some leniency there you just talk to one of your advisors and we can guide you on what you can do to possibly get in. A minimum of two years of either athletic administration experience or coaching experience at the middle school high school level that’s pertinent and also you can athletic trainer, if you’re an athletic trainer you can have two years of other trainer experience that would count as well. So in the application process, you would complete your application. You would provide a resume, an essay which is two to four pages double-spaced name at the top, talking about your coaching experience and why you want to pursue the program and how it can help you. You upload your official transcripts and then three letters of recommendation from professional references. The most important one being from an athletic director and finally pay a $50 application fee. So the application process is relatively simple.

There are three advisors on the program. You can reach out to any one of us especially if you’ve already been talking to one of us. Sean Dove, myself Trevor Goodworth, and Perry Fillmore. Our phone numbers and email addresses are down there. So if you have any interest and would like to know more about the program or like some additional information sent out to you please do feel free to reach out to us and then on behalf of Ohio University, I’d like to thank everyone for joining us and thank you, in particular, Matthew Welsh for joining this. We do appreciate your time and everyone have a good day. And please reach out to us on any questions you might have.