TUSCALOOSA, Ala. – Alabama Athletics and The Advantage NIL program have partnered with several campus groups to form The Advantage NIL Accelerator, which will provide UA student-athletes with strategic resources to maximize their brand management skills and name, image, likeness earning potential.
“The Advantage NIL Accelerator program is the latest example of the incredible resources our students have access to at The University of Alabama,” said Alabama Director of Athletics Greg Byrne. “We remain focused on our commitment to fully developing our student-athletes and appreciate our campus partners’ help for providing this program as the landscape continues to evolve. It is so beneficial for us to be able to collaborate and lean on the various groups we have right here at UA to educate our student-athletes in these areas.”
As UA continues to expand available educational and developmental programming, this consortium of partners provides NIL support services to student-athletes. The Advantage NIL Accelerator will support those who seek to accelerate the growth of their individual brands, cultivate endorsement opportunities, invoke legal services, and master fiscal responsibility related to the commercial use of their name, image and likeness.
“Philosophically and practically, The Advantage is well designed and positioned to optimize NIL benefits for each individual,” said Dr. James E. King Jr., Associate Dean for Diversity, Equity and Inclusion in the Culverhouse College of Business, Miles-Rose Professor of Leadership and Faculty Athletics Representative. “A major aspect is that it includes the opportunity to develop a skill set and gain experience building, understanding and managing a brand, which is like a small business. Beyond financial gains, a young person can improve their employability, be more prepared for success in entrepreneurial ventures, and enhance their ability to evaluate business opportunities for the rest of their lives. In this way, The Advantage incorporates principles consistent with the educational mission of the University.”
The Advantage NIL Accelerator will feature the following groups:
Alabama Entrepreneurship Institute (AEI), The EDGE & Culverhouse College of Business Entrepreneurship Program
- The Entrepreneurship Program takes student-athletes through the startup process as a solo entrepreneur, forming a business around their personal brand.
- Student-athletes will have the opportunity to be paired with graduate students who will take the role of project manager, communicating with other relevant groups and ensuring execution to allow student-athletes to maintain their focus on academics and athletics.
- Student-athletes will also have the opportunity to move business ideas to commercialization through programs offered by AEI at The EDGE. Located in a new 26,000 square-foot facility, the EDGE is an incubator and accelerator focused on growing and supporting entrepreneurs, people seeking to build their businesses, or those needing working and networking space.
- AEI offers numerous opportunities for entrepreneurs to secure funding for their ventures, find partners to work in their startups, and to meet mentors and coaches for the new ventures.
Masters of Tax Accounting Program, Culverhouse School of Accountancy
- The tax program will ensure that student-athletes are equipped to manage tax implications and federal and state tax processes as they obtain sponsorships, grow their business, or accept royalty checks. With services ranging from basic filing assistance to record-keeping and sophisticated tax return preparation, the tax program will provide student-athletes with necessary education to ensure timely and accurate federal and state tax filing each year.
- For many college students, the demands of coursework, jobs, and extracurricular activities often leave little time for the consideration of the new responsibilities that they face as taxpayers. To assist students with navigating the often complicated federal and state income tax provisions which can apply to them during their time in college, the Culverhouse School of Accountancy offers free weekly office hour sessions during which the faculty and graduate students in the Master of Tax Accounting program are available to answer questions related to federal and state income tax filing obligations, withholding and estimated tax payment responsibilities, and potential tax planning opportunities which are available for college students.
Entrepreneurship & Nonprofit Clinic – UA School of Law
- The E-Clinic provides pro bono, transactional legal services to small businesses, start-ups and entrepreneurs including business founder and formation services, contract review and trademark registration counseling.
- The E-Clinic also provides transactional legal services and counseling to non-profit organizations and tax-exempt organizations.
The Advantage NIL Accelerator was constructed with these existing campus groups, who provide this support to the entire UA student population, as a constellation of resources from which student-athletes can pull the individual support they need. With sustainability in mind, the program was designed to remain adaptable in a continually evolving landscape. The Advantage NIL Accelerator will continue to assess and include additional campus partners to maximize the program’s educational value and offerings.