Amanda Van Duyn, a first-year student in the master of arts in business with a specialization in intercollegiate athletics administration (MAIAA) program, was chosen to attend the Women Leaders in College Sports Convention in Dallas October 8-10. The convention experience provided Van Duyn networking opportunities and applicable information sessions to begin building her career in athletic administration.
“Being selected to attend the WLCS as a graduate student is a tremendous honor for Amanda," said MAIAA Program Coordinator Brandon Urry. "The professional relationships she began with many senior level women athletic administrators from all over the country will pay dividends throughout her entire career.”
A three-time All-American and National Tenpin Coaches Association (NTCA) Division II/III Bowler of the Year in 2016, Van Duyn had a first-class student-athlete experience at Division III UW-Whitewater in Whitewater, Wisconsin. After graduation, she committed to attend the University of Nebraska–Lincoln and saw the Women Leaders in College Sports Convention as a valuable professional development opportunity.
“The convention focused on teaching women how to become future leaders and move forward in a field heavily dominated by males,” said Van Duyn. “There were countless networking opportunities and breakout sessions where we could meet established professionals and other graduate students. I loved the revenue generation session, which taught us about development, ticket sales, licensing and marketing at all levels of collegiate athletics.”
A communications major and former bowling team captain as an undergraduate, those experiences, along with her role as the president of her school’s Warhawk Leadership Academy, helped cement her decision to pursue a career in athletic administration. One of her guiding principles is to help provide an exceptional student-athlete experience no matter where she works. She gained valuable insight from guest speakers at Division I, II and III schools at the convention who stressed putting the student-athlete experience above all.
“Knowing your ‘why’ is important because that is what powers your motivation to be successful in the field. I learned you need to be intentional in your actions when talking to someone or working in a group. Another big takeaway is just to be authentic. It is crucial to build connections if you want to work in college sports and be genuine to the people you talk to. That will take you much further in your career than if you are fake or disingenuous,” she said.
Van Duyn is part of the fourth cohort of MAIAA students, a funded, joint program between the College of Business and Nebraska Department of Athletics. She strives to work in development or fan experience before working her way up to a director of athletics position. She believes the Nebraska MAIAA program provided the perfect opportunity to work toward her dreams to become a strong female leader in college sports.
“During my undergrad career, I saw everything our administration did to make my time as a student-athlete a tremendous experience,” said Van Duyn. “It made me want to have the same impact on others in my career. I cherish the opportunities I’ve had so far in the MAIAA program and at the Women Leaders in College Sports Convention.”
For more information on applying for admission into the fall 2018 MAIAA cohort, visit: http://business.unl.edu/maiaa