Careers

How Quintin Wright Capitalized on his Internship to Become a Leader in Sports

Rising to the top at a rapid pace as a young professional, Quintin F. Wright Jr. obtained a highly competitive and ideal internship with the NCAA. While there, he networked and created relationships to get and keep his foot in the door. Now as Assistant Director of Academic and Membership Affairs he continues to maintain those relationships while simultaneously creating the most conducive environment for himself and those around him.

Through organization, self-awareness and motivation he mentors, trains and leads newer members of his staff. Having been an athlete the majority of his life, Wright allows his passion for sports to be the driving force behind his reasons to pursue his career in athletics. Not having many regrets pertaining to his career, Wright continues to be a leading administrator at the NCAA.

Name: Quintin F. Wright Jr.

Age: 31

Location: Indianapolis, IN

Current Title: Assistant Director, Academic and Membership Affairs

Company: NCAA

Education: The Citadel, Military College of South Carolina and East Tennessee State University

What was your first job out of college, and how did you land that position?

My first job out of college was a yearlong internship at the NCAA but my first full-time permanent position was at the Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference where I was the Assistant Director of Compliance and Championships. Networking was the key to obtaining that job. While I was an intern at the NCAA I made sure that I interacted and learned about as many people as I could in that short time-frame.

What drove you to pursue a career in the field of sports?

I played sports all my life and it was an area that made me feel complete professionally. I have a passion to work in the industry.

What has been the most difficult adjustment you’ve had to make in order to continue driving your career to the next level?

Continuing to stay motivated and having the competitive drive. Sometimes when you rise very fast as a young administrator you expect that everything happens fast and you continue to grow at the same pace. You have to be aware of instant gratification.

What advice would you give your 22-year- old self?

Continue to be patient and thoughtful.

Is there anything you wish you had known when you were first starting out?

I wish I had known more about what intercollegiate athletics was all about. This is unrealistic but I wish I could spend about five years shadowing various people in different areas of the industry.

What is your morning routine and how does it prepare you for a success day in the office?

My morning routine consists of me ensuring that I get a good breakfast. That’s really the key to a success day. Other than that, I use list to prioritize my tasks for the day. The lists will keep me accountable and accountability leads to success.

What do your daily duties typically entail?

I perform many tasks in my current role but my primary responsibility is being a lead on a waiver processing team. My responsibilities include reviewing, assigning and processing waivers, by identifying and analyzing applicable NCAA regulations, collecting information and applying subcommittee directives to each case. I also help with the development of the team through team training. Overall I lead, manage, coach, mentor, and develop staff as a mentor and team lead.

If you could do it all over again what would you change about a career move or decision you’ve made?

I believe that I have been pretty strategic to this point in my career. All of my steps have been ordered and I don’t have many regrets.

If you could have lunch with anyone, who would it be? 

Nick Saban. In my opinion he is a very influential leader. I would be interested in his process and the steps it takes to be successful.

What’s your favorite way to celebrate a success and why is it important to celebrate accomplishments?

I don’t have a particular way to celebrate a success. It is really an organic process. Whatever comes to mind at the time. It is important to always celebrate. Life is too short not to celebrate. Give yourself credit for true accomplishments because people won’t always recognize them.

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