Do you love sport, but don’t quite know what career path you want to follow?
Many people dream of a career in sport, and for Christian Thiel, this became a reality by completing Flinders’ Bachelor of Sport, Health and Physical Activity. The versatility of this degree also recently allowed him to pivot into a community development role.
“With a love for sport, but still unsure on exactly what I wanted to do with my career, the Bachelor of Sport, Health and Physical Activity was a great option” says Christian. “The sport industry is so multifaceted and offers such a diverse range of career opportunities, from elite sport through to grassroots community sport.”
Sport is competitive by nature and the industry is no different, but it is also enormous and full of opportunity. The Bachelor of Sport, Health and Physical Activity gives you the knowledge and practical skills to find success in a broad range of areas within the diverse industry.
“Throughout the degree, I had the opportunity to learn a broad range of skills, from event management and marketing through to health promotion”, says Christian. “This has given me a diverse skillset, which has allowed me to adapt and contribute to other areas within an organisation. Job roles are constantly changing and having the diverse knowledge I gained through my degree gives me confidence to be successful in the industry.”
After completing his degree, which included a placement opportunity with Basketball SA developing their junior participation program, Christian had the knowledge and skills that led to his first role in sport.
“I was employed by Flinders University Sport and Fitness, firstly as the University Sport Officer before being promoted to the Sport and Club Development Officer”, says Christian. “Key aspects of this role were event management of both sporting and professional events, club development, and student engagement with sporting competitions and programs. The practical opportunities through my degree, which saw me contribute to the delivery of several real-world events, gave me significant experience that helped me transition into this role.”
Christian’s links to the sport industry made him the perfect candidate for his current role as a Senior Community Development Officer at the Alcohol and Drug Foundation. He regularly works with a variety of organisations and departments including not-for-profit organisations, local government and the South Australian Police, but still gets his sporting fix by also working with sport teams and clubs.
“In my current role I am responsible for the planning, delivery and evaluation of our Good Sports and Local Drug Action team programs, which focus on preventing risk and harms from alcohol and other drugs”, says Christian.
Networking is a massive part of the sport industry, and by studying at Flinders you’ll be given the opportunity to connect with industry leaders inside and outside of the classroom.
“The exposure to the industry provided a great insight into the workforce and what a real-life role looked like, and I’ve created fantastic mentors who have been invaluable to my professional development”, says Christian. “Many of the teaching staff are still working within the sports industry in some capacity as well, so we were learning based on their real-world experience”.
If you want a degree that provides you with a diverse range of skills to position you for a career in the sport industry as well as a wide range of other industries, be sure to check out Flinders’ Bachelor of Sport, Health and Physical Activity.