Sports Management Major Elena Randolph Receives the Michigan Sports Business Conference’s BIG Initiative Award

Elena Randolph '24 Sports Management

Falk College student Elena Randolph (fourth from right) was among the winners of the Michigan Sport Business Conference’s 2022 BIG Initiative Award. She is shown here with other winners at Michigan Stadium.

Elena Randolph ’24, a sports management major at Falk College of Sport and Human Dynamics, was recently named a winner of the 2022 BIG Initiative Award by the Michigan Sport Business Conference (MSBC), an honor presented to 11 high-performing sports management students in the United States and Canada. BIG stands for “Build, Inspire, Grow”.

Randolph attended the prestigious conference October 28-29 in Ann Arbor, Michigan. She heard from high-profile guest speakers and industry experts, including ESPN Chairman Jimmy Pitaro and WNBA Chief Marketing Officer Phil Cook.

“I am honored to have been selected as the winner of the BIG Initiative Award,” says Randolph. “Having the opportunity to attend this conference and connect with students who are committed to becoming the future leaders of the sports industry was so important to me. I am grateful to have met color professionals who have encouraged me to push boundaries and make space for other young color professionals.”

Launched in 2013, the BIG initiative annually recognizes outstanding student leaders in sports business who have achieved an exceptional level of success. Each year, the MSBC attracts top contenders from across the country. Those who receive the award are selected based on demonstrated entrepreneurship, creativity, innovation and leadership. Nominees must be students with a passion for the sports industry who have a truly remarkable resume.

Elena Randolph '24 Sports Management

“I’m grateful to have met color professionals who encouraged me to push boundaries and make space for other young color professionals,” says Elena Randolph of her Michigan Sport Business Conference experience.

Randolph participated in networking sessions and breakout panels on topics such as sports and fashion, NIL (Name, Image and Likeness) and sports storytelling. She also met with representatives from the Detroit Pistons, the Philadelphia 76ers and the NBA. Winners of the BIG initiative also attended a Detroit Red Wings game, complete with a factory tour.

“It was amazing to network with representatives from these organizations,” says Randolph. “My goal is to work for the NBA, so it was helpful to hear from these pros and learn about opportunities to gain more experience working in basketball.”

Randolph completed an internship with the WNBA in the summer of 2022. Prior to that, she did an internship at Syracuse University Athletics in the facilities and game operations department. Randolph is President of the Sport Professionals of Color Club and was a 2021 peer advisor at Falk College. In the spring of 2022 she completed her studies abroad in London.


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