The UCLA Anderson School of Management created the UCLA Sports Leadership and Management Program with help from a long-time Nike executive. 

UCLA said the program provides inspiration, education and access to graduate and undergraduate students, including student-athletes interested in pursuing careers in the global sports business industry. 

Nike’s managing director for strategic business ventures, Andy Campion (UCLA BA 1993 and 2003), will be the program director, leveraging his nearly 30 years working in the sports and entertainment industries.

Campion is leaving Nike, effective April 5, 2024. Nike’s 10-Q filing for the Fiscal 2024 second quarter ended November 30, 2023 contained the details of his separation from the company. 

For over 17 years, Campion has served in executive leadership positions at Nike, Inc., including as chief operating officer, chief financial officer and head of strategy. He joined Nike after more than 11 years working at the Walt Disney Company, where he rose through the ranks of corporate strategic planning and finance, ultimately to senior vice president of corporate development. 

Campion serves on the boards of the 2028 Los Angeles Summer Olympics organizing committee (LA28), Starbucks and the SpringHill Company. Campion and his wife Shelby (UCLA BA 1995) are also minority owners of Real Salt Lake of Major League Soccer and the Utah Royals of the National Women’s Soccer League.

The UCLA Sports Leadership and Management Program will be in UCLA Anderson’s Center for Media, Entertainment and Sports. It will offer a sports leadership and management specialization for MBA students and courses tailored to UCLA undergraduates, including its over 700 student-athletes. 

Campion is working with Professor Sanjay Sood, faculty director of the Center for Media, Entertainment and Sports, on the program’s syllabus for the first course offered later this academic year. The program will also support faculty research, beginning with a white paper series addressing how to grapple with strategic issues in the sports industry. Finally, the program will host events that bring sports industry members together and give students access.

 Inspired by the purpose and promise of the program, the Campions also made a generous donation to invest in the startup. “Shelby and I have long believed that education, engagement in sport and financial opportunity are what everyone needs and deserves to live their best possible life,” said Campion in a release. “UCLA has had such a positive impact on our lives. We are now so excited to give back and help UCLA provide inspiration, education and access to future generations of students seeking a career in sports,” added Shelby Campion.

The UCLA Sports Leadership and Management Program coursework, research and community initiatives will be offered to graduates and undergraduates in spring 2024. The new program’s curricular and extracurricular programs will bring sports leaders into the classroom and engage students in the sports industry. The focus throughout will be on active learning.

“We could not ask for better partners in the creation of this innovative new program than the Campions,” said UCLA Anderson’s Dean Tony Bernardo. “Together, we aim to build an unparalleled program that will benefit not only our students but also our hometown of Los Angeles and the global sports and entertainment communities.”

The program’s curriculum will also include “live projects,” offering students hands-on experience with current projects led by companies in the sports industry.

“The ecosystem of sports is massive, growing, and dynamic while also serving as an inspiring and unifying cultural force,” said Andy Campion. “Our ambition is that this program will connect UCLA’s diverse and talented students, on a broad scale, to the economic opportunity and potential for social impact offered by a career in the business of sports.”

According to Nike’s 10-Q filing, Campion will be subject to the terms and conditions applicable to resignations as outlined in his Covenant Not to Compete and Non-Disclosure Agreement, described in Nike’s most recently filed proxy statement.

Campion will be entitled to a one-time cash compensation amount of $2,750,000 under a Separation and Release Agreement dated January 3, 2024, which contains the company’s standard release of claims and confidentiality provisions.

Image courtesy UCLA