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In an interview, Ronald Dick, assistant professor at Duquesne University, talked about his career. During his tenure with the Philadelphia 76ers from 1982-1996, he had the opportunity to wear a lot of different hats in terms of his responsibilities, and one of those was getting out and speaking to college students as the guest professor for a day. The three components of a college professor's job are research, teaching, and service. Service was an easy adjustment; He was built to work 70-plus hours a week during the sport season. He added Bridging the Gap is a company comprised of Dr Richard Southall, assistant professor at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill; Jim Van Stone, VP of sales for the Washington Capitals; and himself. They identified a need for college students in the area of sport sales and revenue production. The single biggest change has been the marketing of the NBA globally with more players who were born outside of the US.
Sport Marketing Quarterly, 2009, 18, 123-125, © 2009 West Virginia University SMQ PROFILE/INTERVIEW Name: Ronald Dick Title: Assistant Professor, Duquesne University Education: EdD, Temple University; MBA, St. Joseph’s University Career: Assistant Professor, James Madison University Associate Professor, University of New Haven Assistant athletics director for ticket operations, University of Houston Director of athletics and assistant dean for student athletic programs, Marian College (WI) Director of sales, New Jersey Nets Director of group sales, Philadelphia 76ers You have been on the academic side for about a Service was an easy adjustment; I was built to work decade. What led you to make the decision to leave 70-plus hours a week during the sport season. the practitioner side? Teaching—the ability to communicate clearly and During my tenure with the Philadelphia 76ers from interestingly—was also an easy adjustment. Once I 1982-1996, I had the opportunity to wear a lot of dif- learned the science of writing a course outline and a ferent hats in terms of my responsibilities, and one of class lesson plan, the rest came naturally. those was getting out and speaking to college students However, the research component was more of a as the guest professor for a day. challenge. I remember my first academic conference There was a growing curiosity among faculty and was in June of 2001, the North American Society for students about what goes on in the business side of the Sport Management (NASSM) in Norfolk, Virginia, sports world, and how a person gets his or her foot in sponsored by Old Dominion University. I thought it the door. A typical speaking engagement involved would be like a trade show or expo. When I saw all the explaining how I started with the Sixers, what a normal academic research that was being presented, I was day was like with an NBA team, and what advice could floored. It was overwhelming, but exciting at the same I offer a young person looking to break into the execu- time. I wanted to present the following year at the 2002 tive sports field. NASSM conference in Calgary, Canada. I presented Each and every time I came away from the experi- research from my dissertation involving marketing ence feeling good about being the guest professor for techniques used to increase home game attendance the day. I liked it immediately, but the decision to that were used by NBA directors of marketing. change careers was a gradual one. That presentation led to a published referred journal What have the benefits been for you as a professor, article. The articles I write are articles I would like to havin
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