News Department

Sports and Entertainment Management Conference at Centenary University brings industry professionals to campus to share career insights

Organized entirely by Centenary students, annual event brings representatives from major sports teams and organizations to Centenary.

HACKETTSTOWN, NJ (Warren County) — Centenary University hosted its 13th Annual Sports and Entertainment Management Conference presented by Enterprise Holdings on April 19 on the Hackettstown campus.

A capstone project for students studying the field, the event brings professionals from major sports teams and organizations to the David and Carol Lackland Center for panel discussions, networking, and a keynote address. This year’s keynote speaker was Leslie Korkgy Valenti, small business owner, founder of Allstarz, and coach.

The panelists—many of whom are Centenary University graduates—represented a host of major sports teams in the New York and Philadelphia markets.

Teams attending included the New Jersey Devils, New York Jets, Brooklyn Nets, Philadelphia 76ers, New York Mets, New York Red Bulls, New York City Football Club, Cabras Football Club LLC, and Philadelphia Eagles. Providing a well-rounded sampling of career opportunities in the field, the event also featured representatives from organizations such as the U.S. Golf Association, East Point Sports, New York Road Runners, Atlantic East Conference, PGA of America, Fanatics, FanDuel, Legends, Jersey Sports Group, and USA Sports Group, as well as Centenary University and Warren Hills Regional High School.

Centenary students plan the entire conference, from logistics and publicity, to ticket sales, attaining event sponsorships, and booking guest speakers.

“Our students do a tremendous job each year organizing this conference,” said David Perricone, associate professor of sports management. “It gives them real-world experience navigating the challenges of staging a large-scale event. Networking with seasoned professionals—including many Centenary alumni—also shows them the broad range of jobs available in the field.”

Julia Campen, a Centenary University senior, was the student leader for this year’s conference, working with a committee of students to organize every aspect of the event.

“Serving as the student leader for the conference will help me in many aspects of my career,” said Campen. “It has helped to improve my communication and leadership skills, and also challenged my problem-solving abilities. I had to figure out what to do when something went wrong. I definitely stepped out of my comfort zone.”

Sponsors for this year’s event were Cinépolis, Jersey Sports Groups, Real-time Fitness, Sussex County Miners, Mama’s Café & Baci, OMG Burger & Brew, Frank’s Trattoria, and Weis Markets.

Jay Edwards

Born and raised in Northwest NJ, Jay has a degree in Communications and has had a life-long interest in local radio and various styles of music. Jay has held numerous jobs over the years such as stunt car driver, bartender, voice-over artist, traffic reporter (award winning), NY Yankee maintenance crewmember and peanut farm worker. His hobbies include mountain climbing, snowmobiling, cooking, performing stand-up comedy and he is an avid squirrel watcher. Jay has been a guest on America’s Morning Headquarters,program on The Weather Channel, and was interviewed by Sam Champion.

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