Since 2002, the Genting Casino Coventry Blaze have held a prosperous, and long-standing relationship with Coventry University allowing a number of players throughout those years to combine study with playing.
The majority of players have taken advantage of courses offered through the well-respected Business School, taking an important step to enhancing career prospects once their playing days are over.
The outstanding level of education and qualification received has led many of our former players onto successful and lucrative careers post-hockey. This includes, Doug Schueller (Head Coach at St John’s University), Chris McNamara (President, AMT Surgery and Vantage Endoscopy), Neal Martin (Regional Sales Manager, AMT Electrosurgery), Shea Guthrie (Account Manager, Sophos) and Dan Carlson (Financial Advisor, TruCairn Advisors) amongst many others.
Ian Webster (Senior Lecturer in Sport and Event Management) commented, “We are very proud of the partnership we have forged and developed with the Blaze and really feel that we are more than just a provider of high quality education for the players. The opportunity to work closely with James, Mike, Andy and the team on many fronts has also allowed for hundreds of our students to gain valuable volunteering and work experience on match nights, help plan and execute special Blaze related events, and offer pathways for our graduates into full-time roles within the organisation.
“I remember clearly, along with my colleague Nev Clements (Principle Lecturer in Sport Management), August 2002 when we were first introduced to our first two Blaze student recruits, both sat outside our Dean’s office donning baseball caps and tracksuits (one wearing his baseball cap backwards!). Introducing themselves as a netminder, Jody (Lehman) and defenceman, Andreas (Moborg). Who would have thought that this would be the start of, not only a partnership between the Business School/University and the Blaze, but also, on a personal level, the start of lifelong friendships between Nev, myself and the Blaze players.
“Yes, at first we had a strong competitive advantage over other teams with the ability to attract high quality players, especially evident in the Grand Slam winning season of 04/05 when our Blaze ‘students’ included Martin, Lehman, Carlson, Calder, Cowley, Schueller, Schlender, McNamara, Shea and not forgetting Pease.
“It’s great to see that many of the corporate boxes at the SkyDome named after players who have gone through the educational partnership and that the 25/26 retired shirt numbers of AC/DC were as strong a partnership in the classroom as it was on the ice!
“Fast forward to today and every Elite League team now has a relationship with a local University, but none of them have the same relationship that Coventry Business School has with the Blaze. We take immense pride in how we try and look after the players’ welfare and academic workload, especially during busy periods of the season, and (fingers crossed) a good play-off run, but we also offer some of the best ranked Sport Business and Management degrees in Europe that are globally recognised and have helped players seek fantastic graduate careers once they have hung up their skates.
“We hope the special bond we have with the Blaze continues to strengthen and leads to even more success both on and off the ice.”
Blaze at Coventry University
Find out more about the Coventry University Business School:
- The 50 best masters in sports management (Coventry currently ranked #9 in the world)
Phone: 02477 657 688
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Address: Coventry University, Priory Street, Coventry, United Kingdom, CV1 5FB
Business School Website: Coventry Business School
Business School Twitter: @covbusschool
Faculty of Business and Law Twitter: @CovUniFBL
Faculty of Business and Law Facebook: @CovBusinessandLaw