Evangel Profile

Shane Kesler: Physical Education major and IMG intern

April 18, 2013

Shane Kesler has high goals and is willing to work hard to achieve them. The senior from Berryville, Arkansas, is studying Physical Education with a minor in Sports Administration. His career goals include working on the business side of the sports world as part of a major league baseball organization.

While Shane initially considered Evangel for the opportunity to play baseball, his experience at a campus visit confirmed his choice. “I liked the atmosphere that surrounded campus when I came to meet the coaches,” he says.

Shane spent the first half of the spring 2013 semester interning in Florida with IMG Academy, a sports academy and training facility for youth. He returned in March following the conclusion of NFL scouting combine training.

In his free time, Shane enjoys staying active through activities such as doing CrossFit, mountain biking, swimming and playing golf.

Why did you choose Physical Education as your area of study?

I chose Physical Education because of the opportunities available in the sport world. Most people think that just because you have a Physical Education degree, you have to be a gym teacher. That is clearly not true. There are people in the sport world that are general managers of baseball and football teams, facilities directors at the collegiate level, athletic directors at the high school and collegiate levels – the opportunities are endless. I chose it particularly because there are many options available.

You are involved in a program that is brand-new in Evangel’s Kinesiology Department. What sparked your interest in studying Sport Management?

My interest in Sport Management was sparked by exploring my options as a career with my adviser, Donovan Nelson. We had sat down on a weekly basis to discuss the options I had and what I had to do to get there. Sport business and regular business are two completely different things. I didn’t want to take regular business classes because I knew it wouldn’t be the same as actually having a sport emphasis.

What is the best thing about Evangel’s Kinesiology Department?

The best thing about Evangel’s Kinesiology Department is the passion and drive that the professors have. Donovan Nelson has been involved in the sport world, and he has experienced things that contribute to the success of the students. Dr. Keith Hardy, the department chair, is basically a genius. There is nothing that he does not know about the body, how it works and how to make it work how you want it to. The professors definitely make the experience one-of-a-kind because they genuinely care about the success of the students. They make a point to ensure that our classes are not easy and that we get the knowledge we need to continue our success upon graduation.

Tell me about the favorite thing you have been involved in at Evangel.

I took an internship in Bradenton, Florida, with IMG Academy, a sports training facility and sport training academy for youth, which includes schooling. I worked it out with my teachers that I could do all 16 credits this semester as independent studies in order to pursue this internship. I worked with the fitness testing of all the youth at the academy and helped the 2013 NFL Draft Combine trainees in their fitness testing and mock combines to prepare for the actual combine that was in Indianapolis in late February. I got to meet some pretty big-name future stars, but the most important aspect was networking with the people there. I met other interns from around the country, the leading strength and conditioning trainers in the country and many sport professionals.

What are your goals for after Evangel?

Eventually, I would like to work in baseball operations at the professional level, but those jobs don’t open up very easily. So, I will hopefully start out doing event management at the minor league or maybe even the major league level and then work my way up from there.

Do you live on campus? How has that added to your experience here?

I lived on campus for three years and it was well worth it. I was an RA for a year. I made lifelong relationships with some of the guys in the dorms and I wouldn’t trade it for anything.

Why should a prospective student choose Evangel, especially those considering Kinesiology?

Prospective students should choose Evangel because of the practical experiences and needed knowledge they will gain. In the Kinesiology Department there are numerous opportunities available to get their feet wet in the career they choose.

Do you have any advice for students?

Plan and prepare as early as possible. There are thousands of others out there that are hungry for success and preparing to accomplish their goals with no breaks and no regrets. When an opportunity presents itself, don’t let it pass you by. Jump in headfirst and pursue it with everything you’ve got.

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