International Centre for
Sports Studies

Avenue DuPeyrou 1
2000 Neuchâtel
Tel +41 32 718 39 00


Mon. 01 April 2019


Picture: Cem Ulkeroglu (right) with Cagla Buyukakcay, no.1 Turkish tennis player at a WTA tournament


Cem Ulkeroglu

Current Position: General Manager - CIC

Year of Graduation: 2001 (1st edition)

Nationality: Turkish


What does your current position in sport involve?

I am currently the General Manager of the sports management and media consultancy company I founded in 2008, called CIC. After I left my position as the Commercial Director of the Turkish Football Federation, I decided to start my own consultancy business as it allowed me to be involved in different projects – and not just in football. At CIC, we assist federations and clubs with better management structures, athletes with profile raising strategies and media companies with their content offering.  My role involves deciding on which sports projects or tasks are the best fit for us to undertake at that time. In addition, the most important part of my job is strategic planning in order to ensure a successful outcome for our clients.

Which aspects of the FIFA Master course have helped you most in your career?

It is difficult to reduce the benefits of the FIFA Master programme to a few specific aspects but, in general, I can say that the programme’s broad coverage of disciplines in Management, Law and the Humanities of Sport was the most significant. As a graduate student with a management background, I believe it is important to have an understanding of legal and social aspects of sport as well as the commercial side of the industry. Gaining the ability to see the issues you come across with a much broader vision helps you a lot when you really need to get your key decisions right. Further, I can say that the other important benefit a FIFA Master graduate receives from the course is the alumni network they will enter after graduation. For example, with course graduates now working across the globe, this provides a significant advantage when you need to access information in other parts of the world. Whether you have personally met an alumni in a specific country or not, there is always the feeling of close friendship and trust, be the topic a professional issue or just advice on the best place to go for dinner!

I feel so lucky to be part of such a distinguished group of people and so proud to be one of those who participated in the foundation process of the association.

What advice would you give to future students on the course?

Firstly, enjoy your time of study on the course and establish good relations and friendships with your fellow students and alumni. Although deciding on which particular area of sport to move into with your career is important, I would advise candidates to pay attention to topics that are not in their specific area of interest at that time as well. Grasping the practices of the industry and fully understanding how the whole system works is crucial to a healthy career. Only after this should you identify a particular area of sport in which you would be interested to build your career.

Rather than specific advice, a final point I would like to highlight is to try to be actively involved with alumni activities. Contribute as much as possible and always be thinking of and sharing ideas with each other. The closer and more engaged we all are, we can – as the FIFA Master – do more for each other, and also, for the societies in which we live.

I wish the best of luck and every success to all my friends.  

FIFA Master - International Master in Management, Law and Humanities of Sport, ranked No.1 Course in Europe 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015, 2017 and 2018 by the SportBusiness International global rankings.

Organised by CIES in partnership with De Montfort University (United Kingdom), SDA Bocconi School of Management (Italy) and the University of Neuchâtel (Switzerland).

Discover more examples of inspiring FIFA Master alumni career paths by clicking here

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