The Challenges of an Athletic Director of Communications at a Division I University

Erica Michelle Marquard, Clemson University


Sports communication has become one of the rising career choices for college students today. When looking at the rise of people's interest in sports, the search for sports-related jobs has increased as well. The goal of this thesis was to identify the requirements that go into being a successful athletic director of communication at a NCAA Division I university, along with giving an individual who wants to pursue a career in collegiate sports some insight as to what is required for this particular career field. During this process, eight athletic directors of communications were interviewed via email. All schools were Division I universities and all were located in different regions of the country. Once the interviews were complete, they were coded and analyzed thoroughly to determine the themes and challenges that athletic directors of communications face. Five major themes emerged throughout the coding process. The themes were: education, experiences/internships, key traits that are needed within athletic communication, departmental changes, and social media.