Nicholas Swim, Ph.D.

Nicholas Swim joined the University of Maine in the fall of 2023. Before that, he was a Lecturer in Sport Administration at the University of Louisville, where he also received his Ph.D. in the summer of 2023.
His research agenda focuses on socio-cultural aspects of sport, with a focus on how sports shape our experiences, attitudes, perceptions, and biases. While he uses both qualitative and quantitative inquiry to address sport experiences, most of his work is guided by qualitative frameworks (phenomenology and epistemology). His primary areas of inquiry centers around diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) research, which specifically focuses on women in sport leadership (interscholastic and intercollegiate athletics), student-athlete experiences, DEI practices in intercollegiate athletics, and activism amongst sport structures.


  • Ph.D., Educational Leadership and Organizational Development- Sport Administration, University of Louisville (2023)
  • M.S., Sport Administration, Ball State University (2019)
  • B.S., Management, Castleton University (2016)

Nicholas Swim CV

Teaching Areas

SPT 250- Intro to Sport Management
SPT 490- Special Topics (Sport Communication)

Research Interests

Gender equity in sport structures, DEI in college athletics, and student-athlete experiences

Awards/Professional Accomplishments

  • University of Louisville – Student Champion (2022 and 2023)
  • 2022 Dr. Gerald S. Gurney Research Award- NACADA
  • 2021 Journal of Issues in Intercollegiate Athletics Outstanding Article


Swim, N., Presley, R., & Thompson, E. (2023). Digital development & technology in sport: A course to improve digital literacy in the sport management curriculum. Sport Management Education Journal. (Extended Abstract).

Swim, N., Lee, Y., & Hums, M. (2023). “Sorry, I’m not from here!” Female international student-athletes’ transitions into college athletics. Frontiers in Psychology, 14.

Kluch, Y., Wright-Mair, R., Swim, N., & Turick, R. (2022). “It’s like being on an island by yourself.” Barriers to driving diversity, equity, and inclusion efforts in intercollegiate athletics. Journal of Sport Management, 37, 1-14.

Frederick, E., Swim, N., Keaton, A., & Pegoraro, A. (2022). Racist state and the state of race: An analysis of Instagram commentary pertaining to LeBron James. Sociology of Sport Journal.

Swim, N., Turick, R., Kluch, Y., & Wright-Mair, R. (2022). Navigating the intersection of COVID-19 and (re)new(ed) calls for racial justice: A qualitative examination of the experiences of diversity, equity, and inclusion professionals in college athletics during a year of “social justice awakening”. Journal of Intercollegiate Sport, 15(2), 27-53.

Swim, N., Green, E., Hums, M., Bower, G., & Walker, K. (2022). Is same-gender mentorship important for Division III female college athletes?: An application of the mentor role theory. Journal of Athlete Development, Special Edition: DIII Athletics, 4(1), 102-121.

Conference Presentations

Leadership diversity: Why it’s important and how can we improve? Presented at Vermont State Athletic Directors Association Conference (2023).

 Looking back to 2020: A critical discourse analysis of DEI voting programming at NCAA Division I institutions. Presented at the College Sport Research Institute Conference on College Sport, Columbia, SC (2023).

 The college athlete mental health crisis and the role of athletic academic advisor. Presented at the College Sport Research Institute Conference on College Sport, Columbia, SC (2023).

It’s like being on an island: Barriers to effective diversity, equity, & inclusion work in NCAA athletics. Presented at the NACADA, Las Vegas, NV (2022).

 Digital development & technology in sport: A course designed to improve digital literacy amongst undergraduate sport management students. Presented at the North American Society of Sport Management Conference, Atlanta, GA (2022).

Racist state and the state of race: An analysis of Instagram commentary pertaining to Lebron James. Presented at the North American Society for the Sociology of Sport, Montreal, Quebec, CA. (2022).