The United States Sports Academy recently hosted leaders from the Sports Authority of Thailand (SAT) as part of the institution’s longstanding partnership with that country to prepare students there for careers in sport.

The SAT is Thailand’s Central Sport Organization (CSO) that oversees the entire national sports effort in that country.

The Academy welcomed to its Daphne, Ala., campus a nine-member SAT delegation led by Deputy Governor for Administration Rashell Daiphontunya, Human Resources Director Somphorn Wannasiri, Policy and Planning Director Preecha Laloon, Sport Personnel Development Director Pasinee Pantumabumrung, and Coordinating Director Nittaya Kerdjuntuk. The group also included Sports Personnel Development Chief Piyawan Banjong, Sport Promotion Officer Phikulkaew Chanpeng, Public Relations Officer Pichet Suwannaphan, and Secretary to the Deputy Governor Nawarat Suwanich.

This is the 14th consecutive year that the Academy has taught its post-secondary, non-degree international certification program to provide advanced sport education to prepare students in Thailand for careers in sport. The Academy teaches the International Certification in Sports Coaching (ICSC) program in Thailand, which includes a wide range of coaching and related administrative skills for high performance athletes, and the International Certification in Sports Management (ICSM), a program that includes management topics such as sports event planning, marketing and public relations, facilities, and a national sport coaching program for mid-level coaches.

“The opportunity to travel to Bangkok to teach our sport education programs is one of the more sought after assignments by our faculty,” said Rosandich. “The program support provided by the Thai’s is always excellent as is their hospitality for which the Thai people are well-known. These annual planning and review meetings that bring the Thai administrators to the United States are very important for the continued success and effectiveness of the programs that the Academy teach in that nation. It is also an opportunity for us as Americans to reciprocate at some level the hospitality that we enjoy in that country.”

Each year under the program approximately 100 students are drawn from the SAT and its affiliated sport organizations around the country to attend the certification programs — typically 50 for each certification. Following the conclusion of the classroom portion of the program in Bangkok, which is provided by Academy instructors, the SAT selects the best students from each program for a special study tour of sport in America.

Sport education cooperation between the Academy and Thailand goes back to the 1980s and the Academy and the SAT have a Memorandum of Understanding to work together in sports education and training through 2020.

Since its founding nearly a half-century ago, the Academy has leveraged its role and resources as a special mission sports university to make a global impact through quality sport instruction, research and service programs in 65 countries around the world. These contributions have varied in scope from the full-charge conduct of a nation’s entire national sport effort to individual coaching clinics, seminars, and symposia. For more about the Academy’s international programs, go to