Since the initiative began, 14 students have gone on to receive internships and full-time roles within the league and its entities.
On Dec. 16, more than 50 students from 46 Historically Black Colleges and Universities will head to Atlanta to participate in the 2022 NFL HBCU Careers in Football Forum. Now in its seventh year, the forum’s goal is to introduce attendees to professionals in the sports industry, ultimately resulting in networking opportunities for students to learn more about their desired career paths.
The seminar begins with a panel discussion featuring Atlanta Falcons President and CEO Rich McKay, Baltimore Ravens President Sashi Brown, and Denver Broncos President Damani Leech. Panelists will discuss their responsibilities leading their franchise’s business operations and the lessons they’ve learned along the way. ESPN reporter and analyst Lericia Harris will serve as moderator.
“We are truly thankful to continue to build meaningful connections with HBCU students from across the country,” NFL Senior Vice President of Football Operations Arthur McAfee said in a statement. “The forum is one of several initiatives that deepens our long-standing relationships with these historical institutions and introduces us to HBCU leaders who will continue to advocate for forward progress for our league.”
As a new addition for this year’s event, guests will also meet with members of the league’s medical staff — NFL Vice President of Wellness and Clinical Services Dr. Nyaka NiiLampti, Mount Sinai (OHBM) Dr. Reginald Miller, and NFL Physicians Society media contact Amy Weiss. The three professionals are a part of the NFL’s inaugural Diversity in Sports Medicine Pipeline, a push to increase the amount of students enrolled in HBCUs who want to pursue a career in sports medicine.
The forum will conclude with breakout sessions where attendees connect with HR reps, team personnel, and select NFL legends in a smaller, open forum environment.
“Each year the NFL creates a unique opportunity for our HBCU students to be exposed to invaluable information, people, and resources that can help them navigate their post academic studies and pivot into the workforce and a career in sports,” the HBCU Conference Commissioners said in a joint statement. “These type of experiences like the Careers in Football Forum is beneficial to our HBCU students’ growth and development. We thank the NFL’s concerted effort to amplify diversity, equity, and inclusion on a national level.”
Since the program began, 14 alumni have gone on to receive internships or full-time opportunities with the NFL, a team, a college, or another sports entity.
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