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UMass alumni partner with current students in sports management class


Though snow has yet to accumulate on the ground here on the University of Massachusetts campus, the students of the DewMass class, a sports management class that focuses on promoting the Winter Dew Tour, are anticipating another good winter and another good session with the Winter Dew Tour.

Alli Sports, which is led by CEO Wade Martin, a UMass Alumnus, partners with this class every year to give them sport management skills they will need to pursue careers in those respective fields. Through the program, Alli Sports has hired several other UMass Alumni, who continue the cycle with each upcoming class.

Professor Mark McDonald said his class gives students real experience and is beneficial for their future careers.

“[The students] get a complete understanding of sport event marketing through this class, and by serving essentially as a marketing agency working with Alli out of Chicago,” he said.

Students who wish to be part of the six-credit class must submit an application and a resume in the spring semester. Once accepted, the students involved then work with Alli Sports and their media campaign to help promote and advertise the Winter Dew Tour.
CEO Wade Martin said he is proud to have this partnership.

“I feel good about it because this is a mutually beneficial thing,” he said. “It really helps them in the long run.”

Martin said that the Vermont stop of the Winter Dew Tour was the most successful one last year.

Shawn Smith, UMass Alum and previous graduate of the class, is now employed by Alli Sports and said that he values the class very much.

“Being here also makes me appreciate everything I learned in the experiential learning classes,” he said. “I’ll vouch for the fact that the things students learn in those classes are very applicable to the real world,” he added.

Smith currently works on technical support, including keeping Alli Sports’ social networking sites up to date, as well as most other aspects of their social media.

He said his job there resulted from his work in the DewMass class, which eventually turned into an internship with Alli Sports, which turned into his current position.
McDonald is grateful to the opportunities he feels his students have.

“Without the support of Wade Martin, President of Alli, this class would not be possible,” he said. “Our alums at Alli are also creating internship opportunities for our students.”
Smith added that there is a bond among the Alumni at Alli Sports which helps to make the experience more rewarding.

“A lot of us overlapped when we were there, even if we didn’t know each other, so it’s pretty cool to have that common bond,” he said.

“Everyone’s great, but it really helps make it feel even more inviting when you get to work with so many of your former peers. I’d say there absolutely is a bond between alumni,” he added.

Martin finished his interview on a positive note.

“We’re really excited about the program because there is great opportunity to work with some really talented students here,” he said.

The DewMass class will be hosting a tent with a snow tube bowling competition at the Metawampe Stompe Rail Jam this Friday in an attempt to build awareness for the upcoming Winter Dew Tour and give students a sense of what the Dew Tour is like.

Tim Jones can be reached at

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