UNT and the Dallas Cowboys have combined their expertise to create a professional online MBA program that will provide students the opportunity to become thought leaders in the business world. Guided by best practices, industry insights and case studies, this program is delivered through the collective lens of UNT faculty and Cowboys business professionals with strong industry knowledge and experience. In addition to advanced curriculum with real world applications, students can partake in immersive onsite boot camps at multiple North Texas locations, including The Star in Frisco, Dallas Cowboys’ World Corporate Headquarters and Training Facility, and AT&T Stadium in Arlington.
As of Spring 2022, 96.3% of the graduates are fully-employed, and 80% of all graduates received a promotion or started in a new job since they enrolled at UNT. 65% of the graduates are employed in the sport entertainment industry--a number even higher among our female students (84%).
The innovative and forward thinking approach of the Cowboys will allow students to not only be introduced to traditional industry categories, but also take a deeper dive into how the organization spurs innovation and change in the following categories:
36-credit hour professional MBA in Sport Entertainment Management. Courses are delivered online and consist of 12 MBA courses (six core courses and six sport business concentration courses). The coursework is reinforced during three business professional training boot camps throughout the program.
MGMT 5490 Consulting for the Sport Entertainment Industry
Learn from the best – by entering this online MBA program, students will receive unique access to the most valuable sport franchise in the world. This degree is a true MBA degree, and our students will receive coursework in all facets of running a business in general, not just the sport and entertainment industry. Guided by great faculty in general business and those specialized in sport business, this program is uniquely set up to allow career business professionals, professional athletes and coaches to pursue the next step in their respective careers.
The University of North Texas is partnering with the Dallas Cowboys on this initiative. UNT is a Class I-Doctorate Granting institution that is located in Denton and Frisco, Texas, which is on the north side of the Dallas/Fort Worth/Denton Metroplex. Established in 1890, UNT is one of the nation's largest public research universities. UNT has fulfilled its mission to empower students to thrive in a rapidly changing world. Ranked a Tier One research university by the Carnegie Classification, UNT is a catalyst for creativity, fueling progress, innovation and entrepreneurship for the North Texas region and the state.
Where the University of North Texas provides the academic rigor of a Carnegie ranked research university, the Dallas Cowboys provide best practices, insights, and case studies. Online course content contains interviews and case studies provided by the organization and their partners, and all three boot camps will have multiple sessions at either the The Star in Frisco, World Headquarters of the Dallas Cowboys or at AT&T Stadium, and will include site visits, guest lectures by Cowboys business professionals, and project-based learning opportunities related to the Cowboys organization.
A full-time student can complete the program in 12 months, a part-time student can take it in 24 months. Full-time students would take two courses every 8 weeks, part-time students would take one course every 8 weeks.
Career industry business professionals with at least three years of work experience; professional athletes with at least three years of professional playing experience; coaches with at least three years of full-time coaching experience.
Bachelor degree completion, transcripts, resume, statement of purpose, references, and letter of support from company (if applicable). Students do NOT have to take the GRE or GMAT to qualify for program.
The University of North Texas offers a Bachelor of Applied Arts and Sciences degree that allows athletes to bring ALL their completed credit hours at their previous institution to UNT, and will develop a customized program for them that fast tracks them into the MBA Sport Entertainment program upon completion. This program was initially developed for veterans who build up college credit hours during their service, and is now adapted to the professional athlete.
The overall tuition for the program is approximately $36,000 for participants. The price covers tuition and all costs related to the boot camps once the student arrives at the camp, including food, hotel stay and site visits. Exact tuition will depend on the time that the student will need to complete the degree in either 12 or 24 months.
During the program, students will be invited to three boot camps. Each boot camp, scheduled Friday – Sunday, will take place at both Cowboys facilities and at UNT at Frisco. Students will receive guest lectures from industry leading business professionals within the Cowboys organization. Throughout the weekend, students will work on an experiential case study provided by Cowboys front office business professionals. General expenses associated with the weekend (i.e. hotel, food and site visits) are included in the overall registration costs of the program. Airfare and ground transportation are not provided. Boot camps are optional and if students are unable to attend, they may forego the event.
Who is leading this program?
Bob Heere is the current Director of Sport Entertainment Management at the University of North Texas, and a full Professor in the Department of Management in the G. Brint Ryan College of Business. He currently serves as the President of the North American Society for Sport Management. He is a leading scholar in the field of sport management, and has conducted research on sport on five continents, with scholars from more than 20 different nations. His work focuses on fan communities and how people identify with their favorite sport teams, and has been published frequently in leading sport management journals. He has worked closely with many different sport organizations around the world, including the Royal Dutch Soccer Federation, AFC Ajax Amsterdam, the Shanghai Sports Federation, Nanjing Sport Bureau, Fulham FC, the World Golf Foundation, and currently with the Dallas Cowboys and the PGA of America. He previously held academic appointments at the University of South Carolina, the University of Texas, Florida State University, the Cruyff Institute for Sport Studies and Auckland University of Technology.
Matt Walker is a Professor of Management at the University of North Texas and is directing the development of the online content. His research and consultancies focus on program evaluations and strategic processes underpinning organizational efforts across numerous sport industry sectors. He has participated in more than 30 grant-funded research projects for sport and related organizations in the United States and around the world, including the PGA of America, National Football League, Sport England, World Golf Foundation, The Boxing Academy, Golf 20/20, Nike, Barclays Bank, USA Archery, Easton Sports Development Foundation, Fulham Football Club Foundation, Fight-4-Change, Magic Bus (among others). Walker is a leading scholar in sport management, and his research and consultancy work has offered business and management solutions to sport organizations, NGO’s, and government agencies, helping improve and enhance the marketing and management of social and strategic programming efforts. He begins at UNT after a six-year stint as Chair of the Sport Management Program at Texas A&M University.
Aaron Kastner is currently the Manager of Corporate Partnership Marketing for the Dallas Cowboys. In this role, he manages and oversees the day to day relationships with Cowboys corporate partners; one of which includes the University of North Texas. He also services as the Industry Director for the UNT / Cowboys professional MBA program and is the primary liaison between the university and the Cowboys for the program. Aaron has been with the Cowboys for two years. Prior to the Cowboys, he worked in corporate partnerships and ticketing with Kroenke Sports & Entertainment (Denver Nuggets, Colorado Avalanche, Colorado Rapids) and the Green Bay Packers. A native of West Bend, Wisconsin, he is a graduate of Ripon College (B.A.) and Western Illinois University (M.S.).
IDEAL PROGRAM CANDIDATES Core business content, grounded in business theory, reflected in business practice, deployed by business faculty and sport entertainment executives.
Bachelor's degree from an accredited university
Work experience as either a business professional, professional athlete, or coach
SPECIALIZED CURRICULUM Driven through a curriculum inspired by the sport and entertainment industry, the program offers both core business courses and specialized courses in sport and entertainment.
BOOT CAMPS During the program, students will be invited to three boot camps. Each boot camp will take place at both Cowboys facilities and at UNT at Frisco. Students will hear guest lectures from industry leading business professionals within the Cowboys organization and project-based learning opportunities related to the Cowboys organization.