Back to News Mount Athletes Participate in 2017 NCAA Career in Sports Forum

Mount Athletes Participate in 2017 NCAA Career in Sports Forum


Riverdale, N.Y. – For the eighth straight year, the NCAA invited over 230 current student athletes, that have expressed an interest in working within the sports industry, to the Career in Sports Forum in Indianapolis held on June 1-4. Of those 230 student athletes, two College of Mount Saint Vincent student athletes, Andrew Curiel and Evan Brown, represented the Mount at the four-day conference.

For Mr. Brown, a senior member of the Baseball team, this was the second consecutive year he was selected to attend the forum, wants to pursue a career as a coach when he finishes his undergraduate degree. Mr. Curiel, who is entering his senior season as a member of the Men’s Basketball team, plans to pursue a career in community relations for a sports team, league or organization.

Mr. Curiel and Mr. Brown both expressed an interest in pursuing a career in sports, applied to attend the forum after a nomination by athletics administrators. Many attendees are members of their Student Athlete Advisory Committee (SAAC), including Mr. Curiel, who was recently appointed President of the College of Mount Saint Vincent SAAC program.

“Supporting NCAA student athlete leaders with their education is a key goal for the Association,” said Bernard Franklin, NCAA executive vice president of education and community engagement and chief inclusion officer. “Our Career in Sports Forum puts student athletes, postgraduate scholarship recipients in a non-traditional academic setting where they can learn directly from successful leaders, which can have a positive impact on their future after graduation.”

One of more than 45 annual conferences and seminars organized and directed by the NCAA leadership development department, the Career in Sports Forum provides college athletes with a broader scope of the career tracks available within the sports business, with the primary focus on college athletics. The forum provided Mr. Curiel and Mr. Brown interactive experiences with successful individuals in the sports business and a peek into their day-to-day duties and responsibilities.

Mr. Curiel and Mr. Brown heard various keynote speakers and panelists, highlighted by Stevie Baker-Watson, associate VP and Director of Athletics at DePauw University; Jason Burton, head women’s basketball coach at Texas A&M University-Commerce; Clyde Doughty Jr, Director of Athletics at Bowie State University; Oliver Luck, NCAA Executive VP of Regulatory Affairs; Felicia Martin, VP of the NCAA Eligibility Center; and Craig McPhail, Director of Athletics at Lees-McRae College.

Upon their return from Indianapolis, Mr. Curiel and Mr. Brown spoke about their experiences and how they foresee using the tools learned at the forum.

Who were some of the speakers that made an impression on you?
Andrew Curiel (AC): There were three speakers in particular that made an impression on me.
1. Marion Dechausay, spoke about building your brand, which I will utilize for myself and for my Be You Stay True foundation.
2. Jason Burton, the men’s basketball coach at Texas A&M Commerce, talked about developing your “why,” and why it is important to develop it, and realize what you are truly living for. His speech connected with me because it allowed my to re-think my “why.”
3. Clyde Doughty, Jr, was the emcee for the speaker series and was able to keep all of us on our toes and keep everything light hearted.

Evan Brown (EB): I agree with with Andrew that Jason Burton and Marion Dechausay were the most impactful speakers. Mr. Dechausay had the greatest effect on me because he spoke about personal and professional branding, emphasizing the point that one’s social media and online actions reflect on your own personal “brand” which represents you. Mr. Burton telling us the story on how he discovered his “why” for coaching, was really powerful. He preached an unselfish approach to coaching and that whatever career one pursues, you have to have a “why” to be successful.

What were some of the things you took away from being with your peers from Division I and II institutions?
AC: Being around the DI and DII student athletes re-affirmed by belief that all of us (NCAA student athletes) are the same in some kind of way. Even though we play in different divisions we all share the same passion, determination and excitement for our future careers in sports. It was cool to connect and share ideas that we could use for our respective schools.

EB: One of the key things I took away from meeting my DI and DII peers is that we all have the same problems regardless of size of our school. Time management and hectic schedules affect all student athletes and the mos successful student athletes are the ones who either ask for help or learn to adapt.

After listening to all different speakers, did you have your mind changed about wanting to work in sports.
The speakers reassured me and the confidence I have in my plan to work in sports. With these speakers, I know I definitely want to pursue a career as a coach or administrator. I plan to apply to the NCAA Postgraduate Internship in August and attend the Student Athlete Engagement Forum in November to learn even more and stay engaged with sports.

EB: This forum only strengthened by desire to work in sports and I’m glad for the opportunity to attend the NCAA Career in Sports Forum for the second year in a row.

What was your favorite thing from the Forum?
I absolutely loved the DISC assessment, which is an in depth personality test that places you in one of four categories; D, I, S, C.
After finding out your category, you learn about the characteristics within your category and learn the characteristics of the other groups in order to work better with them whether its in school, sports, business or life. The DISC assessment basically provides you with a platform to connect with other on a deeper scale.

EB: My favorite part of the forum were the group activities where we sat together as student athletes and interacted. I could’ve been sitting next to an All-American and not know unless I asked, so we all were able to exit our comfort zone and just start talking. Everyone was there to learn and grow, so it was really refreshing.

What were the 3 things you took away from your time at the forum?
1. Networking is not just collecting business cards, but instead developing meaningful relationships with the people who give you those cards.
2. Your personal brand is essential to landing and keeping your job. Also the people, family and friends you allow to be a part of your brand represent you as well, so their actions can affect your brand in both a positive and negative manner.
3. Find what you love and do it. This was stated by a DIII Associate AD Jay Jones, in response to a question from a student athlete. He told all of us to find what we love to do and do it and for us to continue on the path to find a career in sports.

1. This being the second time at the forum, I was able to truly realize the power of networking and establishing connections, as the strength of my connections showed when meeting people I had met last year.
2. Another thing I took away from the Forum is that people notice the little things first. Small things such as constantly being on your phone are noticed very quickly and can make a bad first impression.
3. The final thing I took away from the Forum is that you never know who is around, and one always has to be mindful of their behavior in public.

About the College of Mount Saint Vincent
Founded in 1847 by the Sisters of Charity, the College of Mount Saint Vincent offers nationally recognized liberal arts education and a select array of professional fields of study on a landmark campus overlooking the Hudson River. Committed to the education of the whole person, and enriched by the unparalleled cultural, educational, and career opportunities of New York City, the College equips students with the knowledge, skills, and experiences necessary for lives of professional accomplishment, service, and leadership in the 21st century.