The University of Tennessee announced yesterday Ashley Smith, who has worked as Director of Football Administration & Special Events since July of 2016, will now help to coordinate and track career placement for Tennessee student-athletes. In her role as Director of Student-Athlete Career Development, Smith will provide professional development and personal transition programming – including graduate-school preparation – to student-athletes across all 20 sports represented at the university.
“Ashley has done a fine job for us, and I believe she’ll really thrive in this role,” said Tennessee Director of Athletics Phillip Fulmer. “She was fantastic in her role with football, but now that she’s working with all sports, she’ll be able to make a positive impact on more of our student-athletes. She understands how important it is that they have resources and advocates to help them transition to the next phase of their career.”
Smith earned her bachelor’s degree in marketing and entrepreneurship collateral from UT in 2013. She worked under Pat Summitt for the Lady Vols basketball program all four year and in her senior year, she served under Pat Summitt as head student basketball manager. After graduation, she spent nearly three years at the national NCAA office in Indianapolis, Indiana. Smith earned her master’s degree in sport management from Florida in 2017.
Last August, Smith was one of 10 women in the U.S. to be granted the Women of Color Scholarship as part of the NCAA/Women Leaders in College Sports Women of Color Initiative.
Smith expressed great enthusiasm about her new role with the university. “I am very excited to serve as the Director for Student-Athlete Career Development and appreciate Coach Fulmer entrusting me with this position,” Smith said. “This is a great opportunity to work closely with our student-athletes, coaches and administrators to further enhance the Tennessee student-athlete experience. I look forward to providing comprehensive career and professional development programming to our student-athletes in order to educate and prepare them for life outside of their respective fields of play.”
In her new role, Smith can expect to work hand in hand with Senior Associate Athletics Director and Assistant Provost Joe Scogin as well as with Assistant Athletics Director for Student-Athlete Engagement Kayla Smith as they build Tennessee’s student-athlete career-development program into a national model of excellence.