Major League Baseball Players Don Kelly ’06 and Neil Walker Chat With SAEM Sports Agents Class Monday, November 25, 2019
"Every class I have taken in the SAEM major has prepared me to think critically and made me ready to enter the workforce as soon as I graduate."
Major League Baseball players alumnus Don Kelly '06, former MLB player and now a first base coach for the Houston Astros, and Neil Walker, an infielder for the Miami Marlins, led a conversation with Sports, Arts and Entertainment Management Instructor Chuck Berry’s 8 a.m. Sports Agents class.
“Donnie and Neil talked with the students about working with sports agents, financial managers and marketing professionals in the industry and how the rise of social media has become a double-edged sword for athletes,” said Berry, who has worked in the sports industry for more than 30 years and has connections to many professional athletes like Kelly and Walker.
“I found it interesting when Mr. Kelly and Mr. Walker talked about baseball agents and how big of an influence their agents have been for them. Also, I asked them if the way a team views them as a person has ever influenced their decision to be a part of a club. Mr. Kelly said what teams look for is talent, but coaches definitely observe a player’s character, and the person he was when he played was what has allowed him to obtain a coaching position with the Detroit Tigers directly after his career as a player,” explained Robelin Bautista, a senior SAEM major and Point Park baseball player from Politécnico Santa Cruz in El Seibo, Dominican Republic.
Sophomore SAEM major Olivia Stawovy’s favorite part of the discussion with Kelly and Walker was when they emphasized “the importance of being a good person and giving back to the community, regardless of how successful you become.”
“I think they clearly showed this by taking time out of their busy schedules to speak to our class,” said Stawovy, a graduate of Greensburg Catholic High School.
“I feel very lucky to have professors who have real-world experience in the SAEM field and believe their connections to the industry will be a major asset in my future career,” she added.
Bautista shared similar sentiments about Point Park’s SAEM faculty.
He added: “Every class I have taken in the SAEM major has prepared me to think critically and made me ready to enter the workforce as soon as I graduate. Every faculty member has been very helpful and supportive. Professor Derda has always been willing to help in any way he can including giving great advice. The door to his office is always open. Also, Instructor Berry has been a great influence towards my future career and to me as a person.”