Mumbai, 15th May 2023: The Global Institute of Sports Business (GISB) located in Mumbai, officially announced the launch of their Executive Post-Graduate Program in Sports Management at Novotel Juhu in Mumbai. The launch event was graced by the presence of Dr. Shaji Prabhakaran, the General Secretary of the All-India Football Federation, Gaurav Modwel, Chancellor of GISB and Chairman on India on Track (IOT) and Vivek Sethia, Founder and CEO of India on Track.
The launch event was also attended by numerous well-known athletes from across the nation that will be part of the first batch of the program. Players such as Rahul Bheke, the defender who plays for the Indian senior football team and captain of Mumbai City FC in the Indian Super League (ISL), Farukh Choudhary, who plays for Jamshedpur FC and forward of the Indian Senior National team, Jayesh Rane of Bengaluru FC and the India U23 National team, Pratik Chaudhari who plays for Jamshedpur FC and Karan Amin who turns out for Odisha FC in the ISL attended the launch event in Mumbai on Monday. The first batch is dominated by Indian footballers who have represented India at the international stage or are part of the national team setup, and have even played in top domestic and international leagues.
While talking about the need for such a program, Dr Shaji Prabhakaran, said, “The learnings from the Executive Program will definitely fill in the knowledge gaps that exist in the sports industry especially for the athlete community, they will find it extremely attractive to be part of it, because of the flexibility of the course. I'm sure once they go out complete the course and they start doing well, it will create more opportunities for others to step into their place and I think that's important in India, these kinds of forces coming together is good for overall growth of sports in the nation as well.”
The Executive Post-Graduate Program in Sports Management is a hybrid intensive, informative and relevant higher education course specialising in the business of sports. The program brings together a blend of self-paced online sessions, live online classes, domestic and international immersions and student mixers/networking events, which will allow these athletes part of the first batch of the program to learn key skills needed to be part of the rapidly professionalising sports ecosystem of India.
Speaking about how this course will help support the rapidly professionalising sporting ecosystem of India, Mr Gaurav Modwel said, “When any industry gets organized, it requires varied management styles. Sports is a very specific area; it is different from other management jobs. So, this course is very different from a normal management program. It's important that people do this kind of a program and then switch over because it will create a clear pathway for executives and the best minds in the nation to switch over to the sports industry.”
“I want profiles of highly professionalised personnel in the sports industry because they would come and help us build the industry. They will go on to make a big difference after this course because there is no program which is as effective and which is an online program or a hybrid program.” said Modwel while highlighting the uniqueness of the course.
The program is co-certified by the University of Massachusetts, Amherst and will also welcome global sports industry stalwarts as speakers along with networking opportunities with GISB affiliates for the enrolled athletes.
Will Norton, Director of the McCormack Center for Sport Research & Education, spoke with delight as he talked about the partnership with GISB. He said, “We’re excited to extend our global educational partnership with GISB, as the past three years of collaboration have yielded enriching in-class educational content and formed a strong connection between McCormack faculty and GISB students.”
He further added, “Tapping into our industry-leading alumni network and faculty cohort allows us to create value through collaboration, and further the educational mission of sport management as a discipline. Tackling this challenge in India with a trusted, strategic partner in GISB has been a wonderful undertaking, and we look forward to helping develop future leaders of the Indian sports industry through GISB’s expanding academic offerings.”
Apart from the athletes that attended the event the likes of Aditi Chauhan, former captain and current goalkeeper of the Indian National Women’s team, Nikhil Poojary who plays for Hyderabad FC who has also been called up to the senior national team camp ahead of the upcoming Intercontinental Cup, Gaurav Bora defender for NorthEast United FC, Vinil Poojary who plays for I-League side FC Bengaluru United, Rohit Kumar and Parag Shrivas who play for Bengaluru FC in the ISL will be part of the first batch of the program.
Speaking about the need of such a course Rahul Bheke said, “We cannot play football for life, we can only play till our body supports us. So, after that stops and then we have to think what now? So, there's nothing else that we can think of other than football. That's why we thought of joining this course during the journey of our playing career. If we are able to educate ourselves properly about how the sports industry works, then we can start understanding the gaps that need to be filled. So, that's when we all came to the conclusion, we should do this course. We all want to try and help and contribute to the growth of the industry in the country even adding from our own experiences as athletes.”
Farukh Choudhary concluded by adding to the same sentiment as he said, “It feels good to be part of this course. Obviously, I'm excited now the course is out there. So, I think it's a very good way to start our journey into sports management. I'm both curious and eager to start learning and see what happens behind scenes in sports in India. So, I'm hoping that everything goes smoothly during the course, and I hope I can learn a lot.”