TROY doctoral student one of five nationally to garner NCAA student research grant

TROY sport management doctoral student Karina Jolly was awarded a research grant from the NCAA.

TROY sport management doctoral student Karina Jolly was awarded a research grant from the NCAA.

A Troy University doctoral student has garnered one of just five National Collegiate Athletics Association Student Research Grants.

Karina Jolly, a Sport Management Ph.D. student in the Sorrell College of Business, received the $7,500 grant aimed at stimulating research on college sports in social and behavioral science fields.

Karina Jolly, a doctoral student in Sport Management, is a 2023 winner of an NCAA Student Research Grants.
Karina Jolly, a doctoral student in Sport Management, is a 2023 winner of an NCAA Student Research Grants.

Her project, entitled “Cultivating Leaders Beyond Sport: Athletes’ Perceptions of Student-Athlete Advisory Committee (SAAC),” seeks to examine the role of SAAC on NCAA campuses. Jolly plans to begin collecting data in September, traveling to various NCAA member institutions to meet with current SAAC members. 

“Karina being awarded this exclusive grant is a testament to her work and dedication pursuing high impact research. That testament is a direct reflection of the quality of student within our Sport Management doctoral program, all of whom are doing such meaningful work,” said Dr. Christina Martin, chair of the Hospitality, Sport, & Tourism Management (HSTM) program in the Sorrell College of Business.

In its 17th year, the grant program awards are based on selection by an external review panel by eight doctoral-level faculty and administrators from member institutions.

“I can’t stress enough how big of a deal it is to receive funding from the NCAA. We’re talking about an incredibly select few that receive funding. Karina being awarded this grant is the embodiment of her hard work paying off and I’m so happy to see her acknowledged with such a prestigious award. She is beyond deserving,” said Dr. Chris Corr, assistant professor of HSTM and Jolly’s doctoral advisor.

Corr said the grant proposal was the result of collaboration between Jolly, himself, Dr. Sarah Stokowski, an associate professor of Athletic Leadership at Clemson University, and Dr. Ali Fridley, an assistant professor of Sport Management at the University of Southern Mississippi.

“Their advisory roles were integral in the formation of the grant and are illustrative of the relationship TROY’s Sport Management Ph.D. program has with other high-impact doctoral awarding institutions,” he said.

Jolly, a lecturer in Exercise Science at Georgia College and State University in Milledgeville, GA, will begin dissertation preparation this fall and anticipates defending the dissertation next summer. She has published numerous peer-reviewed manuscripts during her time as a TROY doctoral student. She served as a GCSU assistant strength and conditioning coach during her master’s works and was a full-time strength and conditioning coach at Lander University.

TROY sport management doctoral student presents research.
TROY sport management doctoral student presents research.

“I’m honored to be awarded the NCAA graduate student research grant,” she said. “This grant allows me to explore the unique experiences of student-athletes, share their voices, and help foster leadership skills beyond their sport. I am thankful for the committee giving me the opportunity to contribute to this area of research and highlight student-athletes’ experiences. I also want to thank my faculty advisors, Dr. Stokowski, Dr. Corr and Dr. Fridley, who believe in me and supported me through every step!”

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