While putting the finishing touches on his career playing point guard for Avila University’s basketball team last season, Trey Heinrich-Schweiger wasn’t sure he would remain with the program after graduation.
“One of my former teammates was a graduate assistant who did the MBA program,” he said. “When the opportunity came up, and my current coach, Bill Sloan, asked me if that would be something I was interested in doing while staying on the staff, I thought it would be a great decision.
“I asked a lot of people in my family who are close to me about it. They recommended that while I am young and in the mode of going to school, I might as well knock it out.”
So, Heinrich-Schweiger enrolled in the online Master of Business Administration (MBA) with a concentration in Marketing program at Avila University. He is on track to graduate in December 2023.
“Through my coursework at Avila, I have geared my interests more toward marketing and public relations rather than numbers,” he said. “I have been able to apply a lot of what I have learned in the first couple of courses.
“A degree will be great, but the skills I am learning … will be extremely beneficial, too.”
The flexibility of the online format is beneficial for Heinrich-Schweiger, who is currently knee-deep in the basketball season.
“The way that Avila runs its online classes has been helpful,” he said. “I had to expand [to online] a lot since COVID-19, so I am used to it by now. They make it very easy. If you still have any questions, all of the teachers are accessible to you.”
Slam Dunk Decision
Heinrich-Schweiger is from Spring Hill, Kansas, where he earned a basketball scholarship to play at Avila. His father, Tyson Schweiger, played football at Kansas State University.
While hooping it up for the Eagles, Heinrich-Schweiger earned a bachelor’s degree in sports communication. He was also a member of the Black Student Union.
“This is my first year experiencing the coaching side of things; I’ve been a player my whole life,” he said. “I want to use this as a gauge to see if I enjoy coaching or not.
“If I do, I’m well connected in the Kansas City area, so there would likely be a coaching opportunity available to me if I go that route. I also really do like marketing.”
Although Heinrich-Schweiger is still in the early stages of the online MBA in Marketing program, he has already connected with a faculty member, Dr. Brian Buckler.
“I have had a couple of classes with him,” he said. “He’s been helpful, advising me and making sure I get the classes I need. I enjoyed his classes.”
The information that Heinrich-Schweiger learned in the early courses in the program has applied to his coaching position.
“I am in the Behavior, Well-Being & Ethics class right now,” he said. “A lot of the text we have been reading is about qualities and traits of good leaders and exercises to practice. As the semester goes on, I try to take some of those practices and apply them to basketball.”
Nothing but Net
Heinrich-Schweiger said that his family and friends support his decision to remain at Avila to earn an advanced degree.
“They are very excited — my grandma especially,” he said. “She talks about it a lot. My brother, Tyus, two years older than me, was the first person in my family to earn a college degree. He graduated from K-State.
“When I got my undergrad, I was the second person in my family to get a degree; I will be the first to get a master’s degree. That will be pretty impressive, so I am striving to do that. I hope to walk at commencement with my friends and family there to celebrate.”
So far, Heinrich-Schweiger believes that enrolling in the online MBA in Marketing program was a great idea.
“I have already got good value out of the master’s degree program,” he said. “It’s been a great experience for me.”
Now that he has settled into the routine of the program, Heinrich-Schweiger is eager to continue taking on the challenges of being an online student and assistant coach.
“The coursework is a lot more intensive than undergrad,” he said. “I am only in one class right now, but the attention to detail in the MBA program is definitely more.
“It’s been an easy transition for me with the basketball program. It’s also a great opportunity presented to me. If anyone else is in the same position, I would recommend taking it.”
Learn more about Avila University’s online MBA in Marketing program.