Graduate students looking to become leaders in wellness, sport, and allied fields now have a new option: the Hinkle Academy, a joint online venture of Butler University’s Department of Athletics, College of Education, and Health and Recreation Complex.
The program begins in the fall, offering 12 credits of graduate coursework spread out over 11 months. Classes will expose students to a variety of sport and wellness careers and lead to a 12-hour certificate that can be used toward a Master’s in Effective Teaching and Leadership at Butler or a graduate degree elsewhere.
“In my world of rec sports, the competition is such that if you don’t have a master’s, you’re really behind the eight-ball,” said Scott Peden, Butler’s Director of Recreation. “It’s an incredibly competitive marketplace for jobs.”
For more information, contact Mindy Welch, Program Coordinator, at 317-940-9550 or firstname.lastname@example.org. More graduate information is available at https://www.butler.edu/admission/graduate/graduate-application-process.
Subject areas in the Hinkle Academy coursework begin with an investigation of the Butler Way ethos for effective leadership, establishing culture, and building community. Coursework will include marketing, special events, program planning, and facilities management. “Regardless of what specific branch you go into in wellness, you’re going to have to know budgeting and finance and sponsorships and legal aspects and a boatload of specific topics,” Peden said. “Those are good foundational competencies to have, regardless.”
Hinkle Academy also will include the Butler/Indy Lab, a three-day residential workshop at Butler University and in Indianapolis, during which students will be able to meet the people—and tour the organizations and facilities—that drive Indianapolis’s reputation as a sports capital.
A capstone, eight-week summer apprenticeship can be completed in a student’s home organization or community.
“The Hinkle Academy provides a unique portal for candidates with shared interests in education, sport, and wellness and diverse backgrounds, careers, and goals to study leadership through the lens of the Butler Way,” College of Education Associate Professor Mindy Welch said.
The certificate work is appropriate for current and future Butler alumni; licensed teachers and coaches in all sports at all levels; volunteer coaches affiliated with schools, churches, community centers, and fitness centers; professionals employed in sport and wellness; and individuals seeking career change or entrepreneurial opportunities in education, sports, athlete development, fitness, recreation, and wellness.
Michael Freeman, Butler’s Associate Athletic Director for External Operations, said the online coursework and flexibility of the program schedule “should provide insight and education on how there are many ways to get the job done in sport.”
“It can work for all types of people, from recent grads looking to break in to sport, folks looking for a career change or those already in sport and looking for self-improvement,” he said. “We could see a very diverse group of students.”
Peden said having all classes online is perfect for people who are in the workforce and can’t take the time to return to school for two years.
“There are a lot of students who are graduating from undergraduate coursework and looking to see what’s next,” he said. “This is a unique niche.”
See Welch and Freeman talking about the Hinkle Academy on Inside Indiana Business.