As a sports leadership and management (SLAM) major at my university, I am surrounded by mostly men in my major. In a SLAM course this past semester, I was one of six women in a classroom with 35 seats. When looking at current front office directors, board members, and vice presidents of major league sports teams, the majority of them are male.
There is no direct problem with this; if they are doing their job well, then that is perfectly fine. The problem I have is that when I tell people that I want to work in the front office of a major league sports team, about half the time I get a funny look and a comment something along the lines of, "Really? But you're a girl, don't you want to do something else?" My first response always mentions the fact that I have been an athlete for 15 years and working in the sporting industry has been a passion of mine forever.
If they still don't understand, I'll bluntly point out that it should not be a problem where I intend to work based on my gender. Major League Baseball recently announced that they are trying to bring more women into their front offices. The MLB is on board with more women joining the sporting industry, so why is my passion for working in sports so surprising to people?
The sporting industry has fascinated me as long as I remember. I grew up in a diehard Chicago Cubs fan family and lived through the infamous billy goat curse of the Cubs. I discovered the world of hockey and Chicago Blackhawks at a young age and lived through the great business turnaround of the Blackhawks. I recently gained interest in the sport of soccer when Team France won the World Cup. I have been a figure skater since I was 5 years old. I know sports and love them and want to live my life in sports as long as I can. What does it matter if I am a woman?