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Club News

MAXWELL EARNS MASTERS IN SPORTS DIRECTORSHIP

30 May 2024

Club News

MAXWELL EARNS MASTERS IN SPORTS DIRECTORSHIP

30 May 2024

Huddersfield Town goalkeeper Chris Maxwell discusses completion of Masters degree

- Chris Maxwell discusses graduating with distinction from Masters degree
- Huddersfield Town goalkeeper studied part-time at Manchester Metropolitan University
- Course focused on Sports Business Management and Sporting Directorships

Signing for the Club as a free agent in the summer of 2023, Chris Maxwell was already well on with completing his Masters in Sports Directorship in his time away from the game.

Effectively the sporting equivalent of an MBA, the goalkeeper had previously completed a Business Management undergraduate degree, whilst also obtaining his Coaching A Licence and Talent ID Level Three in Recruitment through work with the FA.

“It’s just part of me looking to the future and what I do after my playing career, that’s when I see myself having the opportunity to use the knowledge I’ve gained.” Maxwell explains. “I’ve always had an interest into the business side of football, including the role that Sporting Directors and recruitment departments play, and that might be an area for me to explore once I’ve finished playing.

“I like to know the processes behind things, how certain decisions are made and what happens operationally, as well as the coaching and recruitment knowledge and strategies I’ve also picked up. It’s an attempt to give myself a full and clear picture of everything that goes into football in general, which is really helpful.

“Primarily a leadership Masters, the modules focussed on strategic operations, management, governance, compliance, ethics and finance built in, with other modules on creativity and Sporting Directorships in practice. I’ve taken a lot from the course, especially in a leadership - that’s something I’ve already managed to integrate my everyday life, helping younger players and being more impactful in the way I’m able to speak to them."

A route few players take whilst still competitive and in the throws of their career, Chris shared that learning and education has always been an area he’s enjoyed and thrived in, and wanted to continue alongside his professional obligations.

“I was quite academic at school and did well, so this is a nice way on continuing that whilst using the experience I’ve gained whilst playing and bringing them both together. I’ve always had the mindset to learn, I like to pick up new information and try to be the best at everything I can be, so as well as resting and recuperating away from training and games, that time is also a chance to improve my knowledge and learn new things.

“The course was really insightful. A few pieces I had some knowledge of already, but equally there was just as much that was new to me. I was the only footballer on the course, but I got to work with a former England rugby player who was in a similar mindset to myself, as well as a few agents and executives working already within the game and other sports like rugby and the NBA. You got a view of not just how football worked, but other sports too.

“When you’re in academia and in these environments, you get to pick the brains of the people you’re working with and are in your cohort. Half of it learning through theories, modules and practical work, while the other half is learning from others around you, and their experiences as well.”

Backed by the Club in his endeavours, Maxwell speaks warmly of the input from those above him at Town, as well as his teammates. Finding the time to complete his course work in time spent travelling, during hotel stays and more, to his own admission, the experience of juggling his work and education seemed fairly seamless.

“Huddersfield Town have been really supportive of me. Jake Edwards and Mark Cartwright have been really good and understanding since coming to the Club, and they’ve given their own support too. It’s great to be at that sort of Club, and be in contact with those two who are open to me being inquisitive.

“The course was part-time over two and a half years, with a few hours reading per week, assignments every eight weeks and actually attending university every six weeks as well. I found it quite simple to manage that time around playing and training, as long as you’re organised it’s manageable. I think it actually helped my performances, too - you’re not sat around thinking about playing or stressing about the next day or game, you have other things to take your mind off that so you had a better frame of mind going into each training session and match.

“You can use the travel time to away matches to your advantage, that time in hotels the night before matches is good and I would come to stay in a hotel nearby before home games, too. It helps pass the time whilst travelling and waiting for games, and you feel like you’ve used your time productively at the same time.

“The lads have been fantastic, incredibly supportive, and a few were quite inquisitive about what I was doing, asking me questions about certain things that were related to the course, and that was really good. They knew when to leave me alone to get on with my work, but also in my dissertation a couple of players and staff allowed me to interview them as part of my chosen topic, so that was really helpful too.”

Congratulations on graduating, Maxy!


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