Rose Hull discovered her joy for student-athlete development after turning from collegiate athlete into coach. At the University of Nebraska–Lincoln College of Business, she found the program needed to turn her aspirations into a career.
“Student-athlete development can encompass academics, life skills, leadership development and more, so I decided to someday be in a position where this is a larger percentage of my job responsibilities. I looked at graduate programs that would provide me access to those types of things. Looking at Nebraska, the life skills program here for their student-athletes is one of the best in the country,” said the Greenville, South Carolina native, who played goalie for the Furman University women’s soccer team.
She earned her undergraduate degree in psychology, but knew a background in business would help her achieve her career ambitions. After attending the Career in Sports forum at the NCAA headquarters, she discovered the Master of Arts in Business with a Specialization in Intercollegiate Athletics Administration (MAIAA) program could give her the business edge she needed.
“I realized if I was going into more of a sports administrative role, I was missing the fundamental knowledge of how these businesses function, because ultimately – sports are a business. I knew in order to be successful and communicate with other professionals in the industry, it couldn't be psychology all the time, and so I stepped out of my comfort zone and applied,” she said.
Hull wasted no time when she arrived at Nebraska. Eager to get a head start on her future, she reached out to Sammi Cowger, director of the post-eligibility opportunities program in the life skills and enrichment department at Nebraska Athletics.
“Rose reached out asking to be more involved with life skills as it was something she wanted to do someday. She met with all of us at life skills within her first or second month of the MAIAA program. We clicked immediately due to our similar interests and areas of passion within life skills, which made it easy to connect with each other,” explained Cowger.
Cowger, who formerly played softball for Ball State University, related to Hull’s passion due to their similar backgrounds in collegiate athletics. She reminisced not long ago being in Hull’s exact position in life.
“We connected on both previously being college athletes and seeing our teammates and peers struggle, and saw it as a problem that could be solved. We both shared that moment of not knowing what we wanted to do after sports and then somehow counseling was the path we took out. Rose is overflowing with passion for helping others. It's so contagious that when you see that in someone, no matter what the passion is for, you want to jump on board with it,” Cowger proclaimed.
Throughout her first year in the MAIAA program, Hull shadowed Cowger in her position. The time spent in the life skills department allowed Hull to learn through experience.
“Watching how Sammi has taken mental health issues and turned those into successful life programs that impact student-athletes has been significant for me to observe. She's been generous with her time as far as whenever I have questions and certainly influential in my time here at Nebraska. The whole life skills staff has done a great job of sharing information with me and letting me know how it all works,” said Hull.
Hull challenged herself to step out of her comfort zone and learn about business to achieve her career goals. She takes her experience shadowing and leads into her second year of the MAIAA program with a graduate assistantship at Nebraska Athletics in the life skills and enrichment department this fall.
“That is why I'm at Nebraska, because I want to learn from a big power five size institution, soak up time here and ultimately take what I learn back to smaller institutions,” she said. “Coming here and getting more of a business background, along with the opportunity to learn from the life skills department and academics about something important to me, ultimately brings me closer to doing what I loved.”
To learn more about the MAIAA program, visit: https://business.unl.edu/maiaa