The 2017 class of the Euroleague Basketball Institute Master in Sports Management Marketing gathered in Venice, Italy, earlier this month to defend their respective theses and celebrate their 10-month journey, which culminated with a graduation ceremony, where they were awarded their hard-earned diplomas. The 20 students who made up the 2017 class arrived from as far afield as the United States of America, Russian Federation, Germany and Turkey.
The students from the EB Institute Masters 11th edition had met several times previously: first at Euroleague Basketball headquarters in Barcelona for the transfer of knowledge from the league’s senior management, then at an academic session in Venice held at Ca Foscari University, followed by the 2017 Turkish Airlines EuroLeague Final Four in Istanbul, where they were taken behind the scenes and attended lectures from industry leaders. The students filled the time in between those in-person encounters with intense e-learning and case study group assignments.
During the fourth session, the students presented a marketing, communication or business plan for their final thesis. This session ended with a graduation ceremony at the Auditorium Santa Margherita, a unique backdrop for the students to round off a year full of memorable events.
“Sitting through the Graduation Ceremony this year has brought back many memories” said Euroleague Basketball Chief Operations Officer, Eduard J. Scott. “In 2005, thanks to the vision of our former Communication Director Ferran Marquez, the first foundations were set for the creation of an innovative blended learning Sports Marketing and Communication program. 10 years after the first edition graduated in 2007, 220 alumni from 38 countries across the globe have come through the EB Institute Master and can now be found excelling in clubs, domestic leagues, federations, marketing agencies, venue managers and event organisers.”
Class valedictorian Matevz Zupancic of Slovenia, who serves as the general manager of Union Olimpija Ljubljana, shared what made the Master special for him. “In my case, the EB Institute Master followed my experience in professional sport and not vice versa. 12 years of experience has been complemented with a rich theoretical background. Some of my already implemented business ideas got firm academic confirmation, others advised me to change or upgrade in the future. A mix of university and Euroleague Basketball approach was a great combination for students to get different types of knowledge, different views, giving us different tasks and different feedback. Like basketball, the EB Institute Master is a team sport. Working in groups on case studies and assignments online and in-person tested our leadership and teamwork abilities. However the biggest added value of the program is gaining precious business and social connections through meeting colleagues from all around Europe. I am looking forward to being a part of the EB Institute Alumni network.”