Redesigning U.S. Intercollegiate Athletics to Better Conform with UNESCO’s Best Practices in Student Affairs


  • Marc Edelman Baruch College



This paper calls for the massive redesign of intercollegiate athletics departments in the United States (U.S.) in light of their widespread and fundamental failure to serve a bona fide student affairs mission, and their prevalent practice of placing the college’s commercial motives above the financial and educational needs of studentathletes. The first section of this paper discusses the general purpose and functions of student affairs departments within the broader context of higher education. The next two sections of this paper then explore the shortcomings of U.S. intercollegiate athletics departments to conform to these general purposes and functions. Finally, this paper proposes a bifurcated solution to reform U.S. intercollegiate athletics, which enables a small number of U.S. colleges to shift toward a true commercial sports business model, with the overwhelming majority of U.S. colleges, by contrast, adopting a true, non-commercial sports model.

Author Biography

Marc Edelman, Baruch College

Marc Edelman, JD, is a professor of law at the Zicklin School of Business, Baruch College, City University of New York.