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Still More Commonly Misused Words

by South University
October 31, 2011

We're back with the fourth installment of commonly misused words, just when you thought we'd already exhausted every possibility. Check out the latest list:

  • Anyway or Anyways. In this case, you don’t need to remember which word to use in a particular situation because, as a matter of fact, anyways is a nonstandard form of anyway and is never technically correct. Since we’re sure you wouldn’t want to use an incorrect word anyway, we’ll move on to the next pair.
  • Accept or Except. Oh, that crazy English language. Why are these words so similar, yet so different? Accept is a verb, as in “I cannot accept the fact that he is leaving on Friday.” By accepting, or refusing to accept, you’re doing something. Meanwhile, except is a preposition used to clarify what or who is not included, as in “Everyone except Jodie met after work to plan the party” or “The box of crayons had all of the colors I needed, except orange.”
  • Affect or Effect. Just when you thought it couldn’t get crazier, we bring you this pair, which are often confused in everyday situations. Luckily, there’s a relatively simple way to remember which is which. Affect is a verb, as in “The inclement weather will undoubtedly affect my commute to work” or “I was not affected by the cold weather because I had dressed appropriately.” Effect, however, is a noun, as in “Luckily, I did not experience any side effects after taking the medication for my head cold” or “The construction noises outside will definitely have an effect on my ability to sleep tonight.”

As always, thanks for reading!

by South University
October 31, 2011
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Working as a Sports Agent — Turning a Passion for Sports Into a Career

by Jared Newnam
October 31, 2011

Fans depend on athletes to score touchdowns, hit homeruns, and win championships, but behind the scenes most successful sports stars rely on a hard-working sports agent to take care of business for them, so they can concentrate on their game.

“I liked the idea of being able to combine two interests, business and sport, in my career,” says Clarke Jones, IMG senior vice president and global director of golf clients. “While that was what led me to the business initially, there have been so many learning opportunities and great experiences in the industry that I didn’t realize would be possible at the time.”

Although becoming a sports agent might be the ideal career for a sports fan, competition to get jobs in sports management can be tough.

“Becoming a successful sports agent is definitely considered to be competitive,” says Adam Pincus, a Legal instructor at South University Online. “There are four main professional sports leagues in the United States and there are only so many players in each league. So there is, to some degree, a limited amount of clients to represent.”

Pincus says athletes are not required to work with a sports agent, but many choose to do so.

“Athletes typically hire sports agents to represent them in contract negotiations with their respective team, or to field offers from several teams if the client is a ‘free agent’ and available to sign a contract with any team,” he says.

Gary Glick, president and founder of Dallas, Texas-based Synergy Sports, Inc., says that a college football player cannot sign with a sports agent until after the last game of their senior year. 

Although he cannot sign them during the football season, Glick observes the players by scouting the football games, maintaining contacts with different schools, and attending agent-player week.

It’s rewarding to see them succeed because you know you’ve done your job for them.

“Most of the schools in the Big 12, have agent-player week,” Glick says. “As an agent, you have to be registered in the state and with each school. Through that system the school knows who you are.”

Glick says the schools let the agents know when their agent-player week is, and reveal the names of the seniors that are eligible for the draft. The sports agent then chooses the athletes that they would like to meet with, and the school arranges for them to spend a day or two together.

Glick says that once an athlete chooses a sports agent, they typically work together for the duration of the athlete’s career.

Responsibilities of a Sports Agent

“In overseeing client representation for IMG Golf, my role involves advising and servicing our many golf clients around the world,” Jones says. “Our clients turn to IMG to help them create marketing partnerships and revenue, as well as helping them navigate the many logistical issues facing them in their careers.”

Jones says that by managing the different aspects of his clients’ careers for them, they are able to focus on being the best golfer they can be, which is their main responsibility.

“It’s rewarding to see them succeed because you know you’ve done your job for them,” Jones says. “Helping our people be successful and fulfilled is another key to my role at IMG.”

Steven Jeffers, founder of Elite Sports Agency, cites his most important responsibility as both an agent and the creator of his sports agency as ensuring that everyone in his company follows the laws and guidelines set forth by the various athletic organizations in which they do business.

sports agent

“The second-most important function is to maximize our client’s worth to teams in which we are negotiating a contract for,” Jeffers says. “At times we have to take less to become successful and that also includes our clients taking less money to have better opportunities in the near future and prolonging their professional careers.” 

Pincus says that a sports agent needs to have a clear understanding of current market conditions, and the current value of their client in order to negotiate the best deal for them.

“Much like buying or selling a home, the agent needs to be aware of the fair market value of their client and factor in any other particulars that may be relevant to the negotiation,” Pincus says.  

Daily Life of a Sports Agent

Glick and Jones agree that there are not many typical days when working in sports management.

Glick says his days usually involve putting travel schedules together, researching players, making scouting phone calls with the NFL to see what they think about the players he’s researched, and placing players with teams.

“Communication is key to be on top of industry developments and helping execute business for our clients, so each day is filled with constant email and telephone dealings,” Jones says. “The fact that IMG is a global company, and many of the people we’re dealing with are in the United Kingdom, Europe, Asia, and Australia, also means that those conversations are happening around the clock due to different time zones.”

Despite the long hours, Jones says he wouldn’t trade being a sports agent for any other career.

Jeffers cites the long hours associated with being a sports agent as being frustrating at times, but ultimately well worth the sacrifice.

“It is sometimes like working in childcare,” Jeffers says. “Some of these athletes want to be pampered to the extreme. A lot of time is spent talking about their personal relationships and their obsession with being the best.”

Jeffers says that forming deep bonds with clients on a personal and professional level is part of the job.

“We are often called in the middle of the night because they cannot sleep,” Jeffers says. “We lose a lot of personal time with our own families, but again, most of these clients become extended family members.”

Preparing to Work in Sports Management

Glick, who is also an attorney, feels that his law degree is helpful in his career as a sports agent. He finds this legal experience to be helpful with responsibilities such as reading and negotiating contracts, as his clients rely on him to handle this for them.

 “When you’re talking to the parents of the students, they want you to be a lawyer,” Glick says.

Although it may be helpful to have a law degree, Pincus says a sports agent is not required to have a law degree or any other type of formal education.

“A well-known example of a non-lawyer negotiating a contract for a high-profile athlete was in 1999, when Heisman Trophy winner Ricky Williams hired rap artist Master P to represent him,” Pincus says.

Jones says at large companies, such as IMG, sports agents are able to work with experts in the legal, sales, marketing and communications fields, who can help in assisting their clients in areas outside of their personal expertise.

“We’ll see students who want to work at IMG who have a degree in any of these areas when they graduate, but I’ll tell them that it is the specific experience in the industry that will really help them,” Jones says.

Jeffers credits his internship with baseball super agent Warren Hughes, for helping him to get his start in sports management.

“I became his go-to guy when he was on vacation and I helped him find his clients new teams while I was still in college,” Jeffers says.

This experience helped Jeffers to prepare to be where he is today.

by Jared Newnam
October 31, 2011
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Isn't Fall Fantastic? Students Participate in the Fantastic Fall Contest

by South University
October 27, 2011

From Monday, October 24 through Saturday, October 29, students at South University Online Programs are invited to participate in the Fantastic Fall contest on the Campus Common. A cartoon scarecrow will be hidden in three different locations in the Campus Common throughout the week, and students are given a clue as to his whereabouts each day and are instructed to indicate not only where they found the scarecrow, but also how the resource on the page where they found him has helped them in their classes. Three winners will be chosen, and they will each receive a $20 gift code for the school apparel store.

If you're a current student, you have through Saturday to participate in the contest.

by South University
October 27, 2011
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Master's Degree in Nursing Courses and Overview

by South University
October 24, 2011

For nurses who want to move into the forefront of their field, be on the cutting edge of medical developments or become a mentor to other nurses; there’s a need to continue their education. Earning a master’s degree in nursing prepares the professional nurse for a greater leadership role amongst their peers. Although nurses with master’s degrees don’t command a greater salary in regular nursing positions; this degree is seen as a necessary stepping-stone on the way to promotion and greater responsibility.

The question naturally arises, “If I’m already a RN, what would I learn by going for my master’s degree?” Since the master’s program is for those who want to move into a greater leadership role, the classes offered are specially tailored for that goal. In other words, they are classes that give you the skills necessary to develop nursing programs and mentor other nurses.

As part of the master’s degree in nursing, you will study current healthcare issues, including multicultural educational needs, ethical decision-making strategies and the impact of your organization in the healthcare field. You’ll learn how to develop training curriculum for academic and clinical environments.

Your master’s degree will prepare you to be part of the leading edge in clinical healthcare practice. Utilize concepts from pathophysiology in nursing and manage other nurses in a department.

As a RN with a master’s degree, you’ll be trained in how to manage virtually any healthcare organization, such as home health care, hospital units, even work in research. A combination of health theory, application of nursing concepts and management techniques will make you a well-rounded healthcare professional, ready for any nursing challenge.

To be accepted as a candidate for your master’s degree in nursing, you should already have your BSN, or be about to receive it and hold a license as a RN.

by South University
October 24, 2011
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Ways to Keep Yourself Organized

by South University
October 20, 2011

As an online student, with all the responsibilities you're juggling, you may often feel like you're auditioning to be a super hero. You’re determined to perform in your classes, which is certainly a noble goal and one you should take seriously. Before you decided to go back to school, however, you probably had enough on your plate to keep you busy. So how do you balance it all? Maybe you can be a super hero, sans cape (unless you really want to wear one!). Here are a few tips for how to go about it.

  • Keep a Schedule or List of Priorities. If you don’t have a clear picture of your priorities for the day, week, or month, you’ll likely have no idea which you should tackle first. If you try to complete tasks on the fly without consideration, it’s inevitable that something will slip through the cracks, whether it’s an assignment that was due yesterday or your daughter’s soccer game that you promised you would attend.
  • Don’t Become a “Yes” Man/Woman. You’re a people pleaser. You want to make sure everyone is happy with you, from you boss to your instructor to your children, but saying “yes” to any and all requests you receive will only make you feel overwhelmed. Conversely, it’s probably not a good idea to say “no” to everything either. So where’s the middle ground? It can be easier to find if you evaluate each request and consider where it fits within your plan for the week. Many of the requests you receive will be important, but it’s unlikely that all of them are crucial. Organize requests by priority and due date to avoid any future headaches.
  • Avoid Multitasking. It used to be that the multi-tasker was coveted on the job, but recent research has shown that in trying to juggle multiple tasks at a time actually decreases productivity. Now, that’s not to say that you should work solely on one task until it’s finished, particularly if it’s a large project. Instead, set aside a period of time where you will work only on that project before moving on to another task or taking a break. Organizing your time in “buckets” rather than free-for-alls of tasks can reduce stress and improve focus.
by South University
October 20, 2011
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