• KC Women in Sports, Tragil Wade to Address Youth Athletes During So You Want A Career in Athletics on Oct. 10

    Nearly 100 youth expected to attend

    (Kansas City) – Between 2007 and 2018, the percentage of women operating as NCAA Athletic Directors increased from 18% to 31%, Women Leaders in College Sports reports. Further, the sports industry experienced a 128% increase in women athletic directors in college sports alone. As the interest and opportunities for women to have careers in sports increases, so does the need to identify, mentor and train the next generation of women leaders in sports.


    On this Thursday, October 10, 2019, So You Want A Career in Athletics™ (SYWACIA) presented by Cherry will empower young girls and women from Kansas City and the surrounding areas who aspire for careers in sports. The event will take place from 9:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. at the University of Missouri Kansas City Student Union 5100 Kansas Street, Kansas City, Mo. The event, open to girls ages 13-18, is being held in conjunction with International Day of the Girl on Oct. 11.


    Tragil Wade, founder of America’s Big Sisters and sister of NBA legend, Dwayne Wade, will serve as the keynote speaker. Wade is scheduled to address attendees at approximately 12:10pm. Dr. Kiki Baker Barnes will serve as the opening speaker. In addition, attendees will hear from more than 20 passionate women leaders in sports from Kansas City whose careers in sports span coaching, leadership, media, marketing, entrepreneurship and philanthropy. (See speaker list and event schedule below).


    Wade said, “So You Want a Career in athletics is having the necessary discussions needed to push the woman athlete forward into the next generations. America’s Big Sisters Foundation is honored to assist in helping the future female lead in all areas.”


    SYWACIA Founder Kiki Baker Barnes, Ph.D., said: “Roughly ninety-three percent of all sports leadership roles are held by men; however, female sport participation is at an all time. It’s our mission and passion to introduce young girls to a dynamic cohort of women who are leading and succeeding in sports.”

    Thalia Cherry, CEO of Cherry, said: “It is important to me to provide opportunities to expose high school students to careers in the athletic industry by providing representation for women in sports of all backgrounds. I want young girls to know that anything is possible, and the more you learn the more prepared you are for your future.”

    Confirmed speakers include: Tragil Wade, Americas Big Sisters Foundation; Dr. Kiki Baker Barnes, So You Want a Career in Athletics and Dillard University; Dr. Brandon Martin, University of Missouri-Kansas City; Brenda VanLegen, sports broadcaster for ESPN and the SEC Network, and WIN for KC advisory board; Aaron Fulk, Lillian James Creative; Klassie Alcine, Common Good; Angel McGee, KC Youth Urban Academy; Kira Hopkins, Integrity Designs and Consulting; Jacie Hoyt, University of Missouri-Kansas City; Natalie Knight-Johnson, Mid America Nazarene; Damitria Buchanan, University of Kansas; Thalia Cherry, Cherry; Carolyn Watley, CBIZ; Chioma Atanmo, Sporting KC; Sierra Cuda, HOK; Chandra Clark, Big Brothers/Big Sisters; Gina Lichte, Girls on the Run; Catina Taylor, Dream KC; Aija Morris, Greenline Initiative; Laura Curry Sloan, Shumaker Foundation; Candice Dominguez, Kansas City Chiefs; Hope McMorrow, University of Missouri-Kansas City; Andrea Dorch, Haag Sports Agency; Jessica Dickson, University of Missouri-Kansas City; Ashley Newman, Kansas City MLB Urban Youth Academy; and Lori Thomas, Heart of America Athletic Conference.


    About SYWACIA: So You Want A Career in Athletics™ is a professional development event designed to expose girls ages 13-18 to career opportunities in sport. The mission of So You Want A Career in Athletics™ is to strengthen the pipeline of female leaders in sport by educating girls on leadership opportunities in sport and enhancing mentorship opportunities by connecting girls with other female sport industry professionals. Learn more at www.sywacia.com.


    Event Schedule
    Media/ photo opportunities are available throughout the event
    9:30 a.m. Registration
    10:00 a.m. Welcome, Dr. Brandon Martin, UMKC, Athletic Director
    Big 12 Announcement, Brenda VanLegen, Sports Broadcaster, WIN for KC Advisory Board
    UMKC Admissions
    10:10 a.m. Opening Speaker, Dr. Kiki Baker Barnes, SYWACIA Founder & Dillard University, Athletic
    10:25 a.m. Interactive Breakout Session 1
    11:10 a.m. Interactive Breakout Session 2
    12:10 p.m. Keynote, Tragil Wade, CEO/Founder, America’s Big Sisters Foundation
    12:40 p.m. Closing Remarks


    Media Contact:
    Nayita Wilson