St. John’s University, UBS Arena, and the New York Islanders Announce Partnership

December 6, 2021

During the first-ever college basketball game played at the new UBS Arena, St. John’s University announced that it will work with the arena and the New York Islanders to develop a graduate program focusing on the business of sport, entertainment, and facilities management.

The Business of Sporting Events and Facilities is a shared academic certificate program slated to launch in September 2022 that features curriculum offered in The Peter J. Tobin College of Business and The Lesley H. and William L. Collins College of Professional Studies at St. John’s. In addition, the UBS Arena and the Islanders will award two annual $25,000 scholarships for graduate students in the Collins College of Professional Studies and Tobin College.

“The business of higher education is a collaborative one,” said Rev. Brian J. Shanley, O.P., President, St. John’s University. “St. John’s is excited to partner with the UBS Arena and the New York Islanders to provide a dynamic variety of new learning and career opportunities for our students with scholarship, service, and career success—hallmarks of the signature St. John’s experience—for all involved in this partnership.”

“We are proud to be partnering with St. John’s University. Their academic programs are highly regarded and to be able to provide guidance, assistance, and educational opportunities for students looking to enter the sports and entertainment industry is something special,” said Tom Pistore, President, Commercial Business Operations, UBS Arena. “We look forward to working with these bright young minds and the University moving forward.”

The team and venue will also participate in speaker series opportunities with the University including lectures, panels, symposiums, and seminars. As part of the agreement, the UBS Arena and the Islanders will provide several internships on an annual basis for Tobin and Collins College students, as well as host an annual career fair with St. John’s at UBS Arena.

According to Norean R. Sharpe, Ph.D., Dean, The Peter J. Tobin College of Business, “This partnership between St. John’s and the UBS Arena represents an exciting pathway to provide on-the-job training for students interested in careers in sport management, sports analytics, finance, operations, or facilities management.”

During the St. John’s vs. Kansas National Collegiate Athletic Association Men’s Basketball game played at UBS Arena on December 3, leadership from the building and the University—along with Sparky the Dragon, the New York Islanders’ mascot, and St. John’s mascot Johnny Thunderbird—took to the court during a timeout in the first half to commemorate this new partnership.

“Our partnership with UBS Arena and the New York Islanders will benefit their employees and St. John’s students,” stated Glenn Gerstner, Ed.D. ’81SVC, Dean, The Lesley H. and William L. Collins College of Professional Studies. “The new certificate program, collaboratively developed by faculty at St. John’s, delivers a curriculum that supports the core pillars of sustainability; innovation and technology; diversity, equity, and inclusion; and safety and security.”