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Elizabeth A. Taylor and Robin Hardin

This study examined the experiences and challenges of 10 female Division I athletic directors. Four themes emerged from the interviews: (a) lack of female role models; (b) females are not qualified to manage football programs; (c) scrutiny about (lack of) ability and experience, and (d) benefits of intercollegiate coaching experience. The findings of this study suggest these are the central causes for females’ inability to reach maximum career mobility in the intercollegiate athletics industry. Participants encouraged women trying to enter the intercollegiate athletics industry to find a mentor who can advocate for them as they navigate through their career. In addition, participants encouraged those entering the industry to gain experience in as many facets of the athletic department as possible.

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Robin Hardin, James Bemiller and Joshua Pate

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.

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Brody J. Ruihley and Robin L. Hardin

Fantasy sport joins competition, sport knowledge, and socialization into one interactive sport activity. This research specifically focuses on the socialization aspects of the activity. This analysis addresses overall satisfaction in fantasy sport, future intentions to return to the activity, and reasons why fantasy sport users (FSUs) do or do not use message boards. Data were collected from 322 FSUs in a questionnaire format using quantitative-scale items and qualitative open-ended questions. The results indicate 62.1% (n = 200) of the sample using message boards in their fantasy sport experience. Reasons for their use were based on the themes of logistical conversation, socializing, surveillance, and advice or opinion. FSUs chose not to use message boards for reasons based on no interest, information, time, and alternative options. Other results indicate that those using message boards have higher overall satisfaction and future use intentions than those not using message boards. This suggests that message boards enhance the fantasy sport experience.

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Jeffrey A. Graham, Robin L. Hardin and James Bemiller

The News-Sentinel Open presented by Pilot is an event on the Web.com Tour. The Web.com Tour began in 1990 with the name of the Ben Hogan Tour and has transitioned through several title sponsors, taking its current name in June 2012. The tour is the developmental tour for the PGA Tour and the primary means for professional golfers to earn playing privileges on the PGA Tour. Tournaments are 72-hole stroke play events featuring between 144 and 156 golfers. This specific tournament is staged in Knoxville, Tennessee, and is one of only three original tour stops from the inaugural season in 1990. In an effort to measure economic impact in the greater Knoxville area resulting from the tournament weekend, the News-Sentinel Open has commissioned an economic impact study. This case study challenges students to analyze data collected from the economic impact study commissioned by the tour organizers. By engaging with this case study, and its accompanying data and results, students will gain insight into best practices of planning, conducting, and analyzing an ethical economic impact study.

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Elizabeth A. Taylor, Gareth J. Jones, Kristy McCray and Robin Hardin

The sport industry is ripe for issues of sexual harassment/assault due to the high value placed on masculine characteristics and the power differential between male leaders/coaches and female subordinates/athletes. This culture permeates sport organizations, as issues of sexual harassment/assault committed by athletes and coaches/administrators are commonplace and have recently been mishandled, raising questions about effective education. This study examined the relationship between education on sexual harassment/assault and the endorsement of rape myths by sport management students. Results indicate that training on sexual harassment/assault in sport management classrooms is low and is potentially ineffective at curbing rape myth acceptance, suggesting current curricula are insufficient. These findings have both theoretical and practical contributions related to how sport management departments can prepare future professionals to change the culture of sport.

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Robin Hardin, Gi-Yong Koo, Brody Ruihley, Stephen W. Dittmore and Michael McGreevey

The growth of the Web has had a tremendous impact on how information is disseminated and shared about sports. Research has shown that consumers use media to satisfy a variety of needs and desires, has examined online sport media consumption, and the use of online sport media. But there has been no examination of the motivating factors behind subscription based online media, in particular, paid content sites and message boards. This study explored the relationships of motives, perceived value, and hours in usage per week. Five motives were verified through a confirmatory factor analysis. An examination of the usage characteristics of the respondents demonstrates a loyal and active user. This is important for the site administrators in that the subscribers are using the site as a “go to” destination and not merely something to peruse during their leisure time. The site is acting as an entry point onto the Web.

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Elizabeth A. Taylor, Allison B. Smith, Natalie M. Welch and Robin Hardin

Sexual harassment and sexism in the workplace is the unwanted sexual attention and discrimination based on sex or gender of employees by their colleagues or superiors. Male-dominated organizations and professions have been found to possess cultures susceptible to high rates of sexual harassment and sexism. In addition, these organizations and professions become more accepting of this type of behavior the longer the culture permits it. In male-dominated industries such as sport, female employees may even come to expect and accept this type of behavior as “part of the job.” Utilizing Institutional Theory, this study explored the experiences of sexual harassment and sexism from colleagues and superiors in a group of 14 female sport management faculty members within the United States. All participants reported experiencing some form of sexual harassment or sexism during their time as a graduate student or faculty member. Surprisingly, this harassment and sexism came from both men and women. The most common form of harassment or sexism was subtle sexism; however, several participants indicated aggressive harassment or sexism that resulted in needing medication, hospitalization, or therapy.

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Elizabeth A. Taylor, Allison B. Smith, Cheryl R. Rode and Robin Hardin

Contrapower harassment occurs when a person in a position of authority (e.g., faculty member) experiences incivility or sexual harassment from a subordinate (e.g., student). Sport has long been considered a male domain, and this is true in the sport management academic setting as well. This creates an environment where contrapower harassment can occur. This research examined the prevalence of contrapower harassment in the sport management classroom as well as strategies to negotiate it if it occurs. A questionnaire was completed by 179 female faculty members teaching in the sport management field. More than half of the respondents indicated they were treated differently because of their gender, and more than 80% indicated they had faced incidents of incivility in the classroom. Respondents indicated they negotiated the instances by attempting to make the incident a teaching tool and by immediately addressing the instance. Contrapower harassment is prevalent in the sport management classroom, and faculty need to address the issue so the behaviors will not carry over into the professional work environment.

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Elizabeth A. Taylor, Jessica L. Siegele, Allison B. Smith and Robin Hardin

Women’s participation in collegiate sport has increased dramatically since the passage of Title IX, but there has not been a corresponding increase in the percentage of women in administrative positions. Women have, however, been successful obtaining leadership positions in conference offices, as more than 30% of National Collegiate Athletic Association Division I conference commissioners were women in 2016. This research used career construction theory as a framework to explore the experiences of these women. Findings revealed that participants constantly negotiate time spent on personal and professional obligations, and relationships created in the workplace turned into organic mentorship relationships. Participants felt that there were limited amounts of sexism in the workplace, but all discussed experiencing instances of sexism, indicating a culture of gender normalcy. Women may experience increased success in leadership positions at conference offices, compared with on-campus athletic departments, due to limited direct interaction with football and donors.