Profiles in Sport – Claude Felton

Welcome back to The Campus Game.

This is the second in a series of “Careers in Sport” profiles. The purpose of these profiles is to provide regular Campus Game readers and college students interested in pursuing sport-related careers with authentic information from both seasoned and new practitioners working in sports.

We are not limiting our subjects to one specific area of sport; instead the purpose is to highlight a range of potential career avenues. Our previous feature was on Chuck Dunlap of the SEC, and we stay inside the conference today with a profile of Claude Felton from the University of Georgia.

Thanks for visiting.

Name: Claude Felton

Organization

University of Georgia

Position

Sr. Associate Athletic Director for Sports Communications

Educational Background

University of Georgia ABJ degree in Journalism (major in public relations)
MA degree in Journalism (also from UGA)

Summary of Current Position

Responsible for overall supervision of Sports Communications Department programs, establish and maintain the direction of the overall media relations programs for sports, and development of all annual publications of the communications office including media guides, game event programs and recruiting publications.

How did you get into your current field of work?

I was pressed into duty as a high school senior to serve as sports editor of the school newspaper and concurrently took a required journalism class. I enjoyed the experience and decided to major in journalism at UGA. After serving a dual role in university public relations and sports information at Georgia Southern, I made the transition to full time sports information/media relations and had the opportunity to return to UGA in that role.

What are the most enjoyable aspects of your position?

Working in sports on a college campus with student-athletes and coaches. It’s a terrific atmosphere to spend a career.

My busiest time of the year is …

Football season

To unwind and relax I …

Go fishing or hunting, but I don’t get to do it often enough.

Advice for students or those seeking to work in this field:

Start early. Volunteer to help out with your high school sports teams keeping stats, helping publicize the teams in local media. Also, working on the high school paper is great experience. Find the sports information office in college and tell them you want to help out. Jobs in this field are plentiful but there is a lot of competition. Two, three or four years of sports information/media relations experience in college will be essential to getting into the job market.

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Profiles in Sport – Chuck Dunlap

SO YOU WANT TO WORK IN SPORTS?

As a college professor for nearing two decades, hundreds of students (along with an occasional faculty colleague) have approached me over the years with a common quest … they want to work in sports.

A few know precisely the type of position they seek and exactly how to pursue their goals, but more often they are unsure … unsure how to get started, unsure what sport suits them best, what level is most compatible with the lifestyle they seek, what capacity matches their talents.

A love of sports is not necessarily the best predictor of success in the sport industry by the way. I started out as a coach, but soon learned I enjoyed watching games on Friday nights or Saturday afternoons more than preparing teams to play.

Over the summer months, please visit The Campus Game to read a weekly series of profiles focusing on people who actually are working in the sport industry. As always, our primary focus is college football, but the profiles will include practitioners in other fields as well.

The goal is to post a profile every week until the start of football season. Each person answers a consistent set of questions, while adding their own advice (so you are reading their words). The profiles should be both entertaining and informative.

We start the series today with Chuck Dunlap of the Southeastern Conference.

NAME: CHUCK DUNLAP

Organization

Southeastern Conference (SEC)

Position

Associate Director of Media and Public Relations

Educational Background

Bachelor in Communications with minor in Marketing from Mississippi State
MBA from University of Alabama-Birmingham

Summary of Position/Job Responsibilities

Primary spokesman and contact for SEC Baseball and No. 2 contact for SEC Football.

Most Enjoyable Aspects of Your Position

There are too many to mention. Mainly love playing a small role for a conference such as the SEC.

Busiest Time of the Year

Hard to say. Probably the end of football season and March Madness.

To relax I:

Spend time with the kids/golf. Cookouts on back porch/patio.

My advice for students or those seeking to work in this field:

Get hands on experience when in school. Don’t wait until you graduate. Volunteer. There are some things a book cannot teach you.