Rise of the football colleges
Football (soccer) is an industry like many others. But its pull is exceptionally strong for young people. Many years before they hear the call of operations management or get their heads round freight forwarding, they kick a ball around and fantasise about scoring at Wembley. This simple passion creates a funnel of eager souls wanting to get into the football industry.
There a few details to get under their belts before they can manage a Premier League side, though, and thus there is a demand for career-focused, full-time academic training in footballology. That isn’t a word, but perhaps it should be, because a variety of institutions offer full-length degree and master’s programmes. Let’s call them Rooneyversities.
The biggest one is UCFB, the University College of Football Business. It is dedicated to the delivery of word-class degrees in the operational and business facets of the football, sports and events industries. Degree subjects include the following:
- Sport Management
- International Football Business
- Sports Broadcasting
- Football Coaching and Management
- Sports Psychology
- Football Business & Media
- Physical Education
- Sports Business & Sports Law
- Multimedia Sports Journalism.
Aside from this dedicated institution, a dozen or so British universities offer football degrees. These include:
- Southampton Solent University (BA (Hons) degrees in Football Business Management, Football Science, Football Studies)
- University of Derby (BA (Hons) Football Journalism)
- St Mary’s University, Twickenham (2 year foundation degree in Football Education, Coaching and Development)
- Liverpool John Moores University (BSc (Hons) Science and Football)
- The Open University (BA (Hons) Business Management (Sport and Football))
- University of Bedfordshire (BA (Hons) in Football Studies with or without a Professional Practice Year, Football Studies with Foundation Year)
- University of Chichester (BSc (Hons) and FdSc Football Coaching and Performance)
- Plymouth MarJohn University (BA (Hons) Football Coaching and Development)
So with this many Rooneyversities offering career training, it looks as if the beautiful game will be well fed with dedicated professionals for a long time to come.