The professional tennis management program offered at Tyler Junior College gives students a chance to turn their love for the game into a full time job.
The Tennis Tech program has been offered at Tyler Junior College since 1974 and has hosted students from every corner of the planet. TJC is one of three schools to offer the Professional Tennis Management program and has gained a reputation of producing top-level coaches with the help of program coordinator Kimm Ketelsen.
“When I came to Tyler Junior College, the program had taken a slump, but thankfully we were able to revive and turn it into a successful program again,” Ketelsen said.
The Tennis Tech program offers classes ranging from accounting to small business management that will better prepare the student not only on the court, but off as well. The jobs with the degree range from tennis director or resort instructor, to college coach.
“Over 90 percent of graduates find jobs right after college,” said Ketelsen “The degree really comes in handy about three to five years down the line when a coach moves off the court and into the office or club house. They will have a definite advantage over the coaches who do not have the degree because they will be better prepared in the business aspect of tennis.”
The Tennis Tech program has the reputation to open doors for anyone who attended anywhere they might go.
“I graduated the tech program in 2003, and I had three job offers that first month ranging from North Carolina all the way to Japan,” said TJC alumni Chris Gill. ” My dream job was to coach college tennis, and I was able to achieve that within four years at the University of Texas-Pan American. I wouldn’t have had that opportunity if it were not for Coach K and the Tennis Tech program.”
For many students in the tech program, this is their second chance at another life because they were unsatisfied with their life before. Some have degrees from other schools and didn’t like the field they were in, or they went straight into the work force.
“I went straight to work right after high school,” said Brent Kriovokapich. ” I worked at an oil field in New Mexico and made great money but really burned me out. I always enjoyed tennis and decided to give the tennis tech programs a try, and the last couple of years have been great. I rather be a broke but happy college student doing something that I love and am passionate about, rather than a working adult with money.”
The Tennis Tech program is a great opportunity for students to gained knowledge about a sport they love and turn it into a career.