United States Sports Academy doctoral degree program alumnus Dr. Alan Ledford was recently named to the Clinton County (Ohio) Sports Hall of Fame.
Ledford is the program director and assistant professor in the sport management department at Wilmington (Ohio) College. Ledford earned his Doctor of Education degree in sports management from the Academy in 2016.
Ledford credited his Academy degree with helping him land his job at Wilmington. He said the Academy’s flexible online learning option were beneficial to him as a student.
“After completing my doctoral degree, I was able to interview and earn my current job at Wilmington College,” Ledford said. “The Academy is great place for a self-starter student. The classes are enjoyable and the biggest positive is that the courses can be self-directed, meaning you can take the classes as slow or as fast as you see fit.”
At Wilmington, Ledford oversees all aspects of the institution’s sports management department. Part of his job is ensuring that students in the department get real, “hands on” experience in the field of sport, including volunteering during Super Bowl Week.
“Our students will experience Super Bowl Week and Game Day from behind the scenes to learn the ins and outs of the business of hosting a mega-event,” Ledford said. “They will gain a hands-on understanding of what it takes to plan, organize and execute a true sporting event behemoth. The students also will interview, network, and learn from top people in the sports business world.
“As volunteers, they serve as ambassadors, greeters and customer service staff in assisting the thousands of guests attending a myriad of events and activities associated with ‘The NFL Experience’ during Super Bowl Week.”
Ledford has also taught the Academy’s post-secondary, non-degree international sports education programs in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, where he taught the institution’s International Diploma in Physical Education and Sports Coaching (IDPESC) program.
Ledford is a former baseball player at Blanchester High School and Wilmington College, both in the Clinton County area. He said he was honored to be part of the county’s sports hall of fame.
“I was very surprised by the induction,” Ledford said. “I opened the letter, read it about five times and couldn’t believe it. I was very humbled. I had never really thought, I’d be inducted, but I was very happy to be asked.”
Ledford has also worked as a faculty member at Miami Jacobs Career College in Dayton, Ohio and an online instructor at Miller-Motte College in Wilmington, N.C. Ledford has more than 10 years of experience as an instructor and as an administrator in higher education and athletics.
In addition to his teaching experience, Ledford served as an admissions representative at Miami Jacobs Career College and as an athletics program specialist and faculty member at Harrisburg Area Community College (HACC) in Harrisburg, Pa. At HACC, he provided management support for 40 intercollegiate events and supervised staff. He also served as an instructor for soccer, basketball, badminton, tennis and physical fitness courses.
He has experience working as an administrator with the Ohio Athletic Conference in Twinsburg, Ohio; a research assistant and instructor at East Tennessee State University in Johnson City, Tenn. and a coordinator of event management and equipment operations at Wilmington College.
Ledford holds a master’s degree in physical education from East Tennessee State and a bachelor’s degree in sport management from Wilmington College of Ohio.
His professional affiliations include memberships with the North American Society of Sport Management (NASSM), the Commission on Sport Management (COSMA) and the Sport Research Consortium (SRC).