Magazine article University Business

Life after Sports

Magazine article University Business

Life after Sports

Article excerpt

WHAT DO HOCKEY PLAYERS DO when they hang up their skates at the end of their career? That was the research question at Quinnipiac University (Conn.) which led to the development of the Professional Athlete Transition Institute in the School of Business.

Duncan Fletcher, director of PATI, says the biggest misperception people have is that athletes are all millionaires who can just play golf and watch TV after their sports careers end. "But for the majority of them, it's not a question of should they work but of what kind of second career should they pursue," he says. "In most sports, players don't stay long enough to earn the kind of money that sets them for life. And in most sports, players don't play long enough to even qualify for the league pension plan."

The institute itself is unique. Although there are "in-house" programs in other sports leagues to serve athletes, PATI is the only one in a university environment. "Our program covers both active and retired players--which others don't--in helping them make the transition to post-playing days," says Fletcher. "With retired players it is a much more time-sensitive process because they need to get going on a career."

Hockey's pension plan and retirement program lag way behind those of other sports, and there are many former players in need of true assistance. …

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