The fourth and final Global Sports Summit of the year saw UCFB and GIS students travel to the Southern city of Atlanta, Georgia.

Over the course of ten days, students engaged with industry experts, enjoyed exclusive access to guest speaker sessions and watched live NFL (National Football League), MLB (Major League Baseball) and MLS (Major League Soccer) games.

With insight into the specific workings of sport in Atlanta, how the US sports landscape differs from the UK, and the explosion of soccer in the nation, students were exposed to a wealth of content which irrevocably changed their perception of the industry.

Commenting on the Summit, student Angely Castro said: “Before coming, I thought I knew what I wanted to do but it has definitely opened my eyes to new roles. You come to a different culture, they’ve got different jobs, and they’ve got opportunities here.

“After I finish university I think that coming to America is a big possibility. I wouldn’t have known about any of these roles, such as Community Relations, if I didn’t come to this summit. It’s definitely impacted my career; now I have more of an idea of what I want to go into.”

Hearing from the likes of Carlos Bocanegra, Vice President at Atlanta United, and Chris Lee, Director of Partnerships at AMB Sports + Entertainment, students learnt about the swift commercialisation of sport and, perhaps more importantly, had the chance to network with leading industry experts, growing their international contact base.

Coaching student Sam Donachie summarised : “It’s been great – we’ve had brilliant guest speakers, we also got to go an MLS Soccer game, Atlanta United vs Toronto FC. I’ve never experienced watching a football match in a big stadium like that.

“The NFL was probably the highlight of the trip for me. I’ve never seen fans like that, literally in the tailgate which was amazing to see, especially as we don’t see that back home in the Premier League.”

Find out more about GIS’ Global Sports Summits.