Sports Media: Choosing the Specialization

What is Medill looking for in applicants for the specialization?

Applicants to Medill’s Sports Media Specialization should be eager to learn about sports reporting, sports marketing and the intersection of sports and many facets of society such as business, health and politics. Our applicants should have excellent communication skills, written and/or visual, but no prior journalism or marketing experience is required.   However, students who have previous experience will find the program stimulating.  Both newcomers and those with some experience will be exposed to the successful techniques and thinking that sports media in the future demands.  Successful applicants will have demonstrated an ability to learn concepts and implement them at a very high level and fast pace.

 What skills will I learn?

Anyone who successfully completes the Medill MSJ program with a specialization in Sports Media will have an understanding of sports reporting, sourcing, writing and multimedia.  Graduates will have published a plethora of sports stories on a wide variety of subjects, sports and platforms.  Students will learn how to report on a game, produce an athlete profile and cover all the angles of a sporting event such as the NFL Draft. Students may aspire to front or back of a camera, to long form analysis and comments, to digital storytelling, team communications, and many more aspects of the broad sports storytelling fields. 

Chicago is a city that is rich in sports and sports history. Our students apply their skills to coverage of Olympic athletes, professional sports, college sports and much more.

What career opportunities will be available?

Our graduates have gone on to careers as sports writers for top-notch publications such as Sports Illustrated and USA Today. They work at ESPN and at television stations across the country. We have graduates who go on to successful careers in sports marketing and communications and work for teams, leagues or sports brands.

What unusual opportunities will there be during the sports media program?

The sports media specialization offers many curricular and extra-curricular opportunities to enhance each student’s knowledge of and experience with sports media:

-mentors for the student from the illustrious alumni list who practice in the field

-trips to study sports in many environments, from Olympic training grounds to sports networks

-field days to see teams in actions

-residencies at sports media operations

-classes built around topical events such as the NFL draft

-guest speakers who interact with students

-challenges to solve offered by major participants in media, from the NCAA to The Big Ten Network

-creation of multimedia portfolios to ensure best presentations for future jobs

-on site career services for advice and preparation

-professors who are active in the field

-well rounded training in many aspects of the field