Columbia College partners with Major League Baseball to offer umpire certificate

Unique alliance enables students to pursue professional baseball umpiring careers

**At this time the certificate is available only to U.S. Marines stationed in Southern California.**

Columbia College announced its partnership with Major League Baseball (MLB) to afford students the opportunity to earn a certificate of professional officiating. The certificate, offered through the college’s Education Department, is an 18-credit hour sequence of liberal arts courses that incorporates a week-long internship at the MLB Umpire Camp. The program costs $4,500, which includes all coursework and MLB Umpire Camp fees. The program is currently only available to students online.

“Major League Baseball is pleased that its Umpire Camps can provide an educational outlet for the students of Columbia College who have interest in umpiring as a profession,” said Jimmie Lee Solomon, MLB’s Executive Vice President, Baseball Operations. “Our game as a whole has taken many steps to honor our nation’s heroes. The Major League Umpires are thrilled to use the MLB Umpire Camp as a platform to work with these highly motivated and dedicated individuals as they consider potential careers in the next chapters of their lives.”

The certificate was born last year when a San Diego Marine Corps major interested in a second career in officiating approached the director of Columbia College's campus on the San Diego Marine Corps Recruiting Depot. The major, Director Diana Schriefer and MLB umpire supervisor Rich Rieker agreed the certificate was feasible, and college faculty and administration then assembled the necessary coursework.

“The certificate is a new and exciting concept for Columbia College,” said Dr. Terry Smith, executive vice president and dean for Academic Affairs. “We are thrilled to partner with such a prestigious organization and together hope to produce a large cohort of highly-skilled baseball umpires for our communities.”

The required coursework provides skills in areas important to successful sports officiating: communication, applied psychology and the sociology of sports. Elective courses cover human services, marketing, social sciences and ethics. The internship is typically held in November in Compton, Calif. Upon completion of certificate requirements, graduates are prepared academically and professionally to become successful, competitive baseball umpires.


Moses Manning said...

I am very interested in the course. How do I find out more?

Anonymous said...

This is such an interesting program! The combination of liberal arts courses designed to provide an understanding of sports with actual hands-on officiating experience is awesome! And the online offering allows non-traditional students a means to make it really happen. said...

Very interesting. Like the broader approach through the coursework. I have added this link to our Umpire Camps and Clinics page. Best of luck. Please let us know if we can assist you in any way.

Jim Kirk

Neal Fandek said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Kathy said...

How long is the internship in Compton Ca??? Is this available for both men and women???

Neal Fandek said...

Moses and Kathy,

At this time admission to the program is limited to Marines in Southern California, due to the limited number of spaces in the MLB Umpire Camp.

At some time in the future the program will be open to the general public. Stay tuned!