Experiential learning is a critical component to a college education in the area of sport management as students must enter the workforce with hands-on industry experience. One experiential learning tool is a cocurricular club that offers volunteer work experience for sport management majors. The University of Tennessee’s Partners in Sports is an example of a sport management cocurricular club that prepares students for working in the sport industry through volunteer experiences. The purpose of this study was to provide a governance and organizational framework of a student-operated sport management cocurricular club and explore how it fits into the Foster Five-Step Experiential Learning Model (Foster & Dollar, 2010). This study examines the governance, student involvement, leadership, opportunities, financials, and yearly activities of Partners in Sports and offers practical applications for each area. The exploration revealed that a cocurricular club fits on the Volunteer Exploration step of the Foster Five-Step Experiential Learning Model as it introduces students to the sport industry by offering experiential learning opportunities. Providing a cocurricular club allows sport management programs to maximize initial industry exposure to students.
Hardin and Bemiller are with the Dept. of Kinesiology, Recreation, and Sport Studies, University of Tennessee, Knoxville, TN. Pate is with the Dept. of Hospitality, Sport, and Recreation Management, James Madison University, VA.