The Charger Blog

Sport Management Alum Supports Current Students, Future Industry Leaders

Chris Bartels ’15 M.S. knows firsthand that breaking into the sports industry can be challenging, and he’s now offering his support to current and future Chargers to help them across the starting line in their own careers.

June 13, 2023

By Renee Chmiel, Office of Marketing and Communications

The Charger statue at the University of New Haven.
The Charger statue at the University of New Haven.

Chris Bartels ’15 M.S. is grateful for the opportunities he had as part of the University’s graduate program in sport management. His goal is to now ensure that current – and future – students have those same meaningful opportunities to excel in the industry.

Bartels is particularly committed to helping to create experiential-learning opportunities for Chargers. He and his wife Minsung have generously created an endowed fund for sport management students’ professional development.

“As a former student in the sport management program, I understand the challenges of getting that first job or that first internship in the sports industry,” explains Bartels, an associate vice president for Berk Communications. “I believe it’s important to give back to current students to help provide them with the opportunities that will best set them up for success.”

‘The best possible experiential opportunities’

As an alum, Bartels has already been doing just that. He was among the alumni who coached students as they prepared for the National Collegiate Sport Sales Competition qualifier. The students excelled in the sales competition, ranking among the best in the country. Bartels met with students in weekly training sessions, offering feedback and support.

Ceyda Mumcu, Ph.D.
Ceyda Mumcu, Ph.D.

Bartels has, says Ceyda Mumcu, Ph.D., chair of the University’s Sport Management Department, made a meaningful impact on students. She’s looking forward to the experiences the family’s generosity will continue to offer to Chargers.

“I am grateful to Chris and Minsung for their generous contribution to the Sport Management Department,” said Dr. Mumcu. “It shows their trust in our student-centric initiatives and deep commitment to the power of education. Their contribution will allow us to provide our students with the best possible experiential opportunities, preparing them for success in the sport industry. I look forward to working with Chris to advance the mission of the University and to create new student experiences in the Sport Management Department.”

‘Putting yourself out there and meeting people’

Beginning this summer, the funding from the Bartels family will enable students to gain hands-on experiences by attending conferences, networking events, and industry-related competitions.

Chris Bartels ’15 M.S.
Chris Bartels ’15 M.S.

Bartels says the professors he had – including Dr. Mumcu – as well as his coursework helped build his understanding of the sports industry. He says this helped him get his own foot in the door, and he now wants to help support future industry professionals as they prepare to begin their own careers.

“The sport management program is in such great hands with Dr. Mumcu, as she’s been working to help students both break into and advance within the sports industry,” he said. “Professional development, whether through attending conferences, competitions, or even networking opportunities, are vital for students. Putting yourself out there and meeting people in the industry goes a long way.”