May 30, 2024

York College Alumni Launch Their Careers at Under Armour

7-Minute Read

The Baltimore-based sportswear giant has become a career starting point for many graduates, whether they studied Business, Economics, or International Relations.

From managing collegiate accounts to overseeing global logistics, York College of Pennsylvania alumni are making significant contributions to the success of Under Armour. Three graduates working at the global sportswear company, headquartered in Baltimore, share the impact of their college education and the valuable lessons they’ve learned along the way.

The Marriage Of Athletics And Business

Christopher Ports ’08 is a collegiate account manager at Under Armour. He majored in Business and minored in Economics. Before starting at the company in 2009, he found himself trying to navigate the challenges of a recession-era job market.

“Having that Business and Finance degree, entry-level positions really weren’t anywhere to be found,” he says.

Ports had played soccer for the Spartans and always had been interested in the world of athletics. At Under Armour, he found the perfect marriage of his education and his love of sports. Starting in the Shipping and Receiving Department, Ports worked his way up through customer service and various sales positions, eventually landing his current job as an account manager.

York College would play a pivotal role in his career, providing him with a well-rounded education and essential critical-thinking skills. With a Business degree, he found an unexpected opportunity in marketing Under Armour products and reading financial statements. His hands-on college experiences, including playing soccer and conducting research on the economic impact of the Summer Olympic Games, equipped him with valuable insights into athletes’ needs and market dynamics.

“I’ve been with the company for 14 years, and I’m very appreciative of the career I’ve had here,” he says. 

Building A Career Through Relationships

Stephen Cashman ’13 is the national sales manager of Outdoor Hunt/Fish at Under Armour. He graduated with a degree in Business Management, minoring in Marketing. Cashman learned at York College that one of the most important aspects of business is building relationships and gaining practical experience beyond the classroom.

He served internships with the Baltimore Orioles during his junior and senior years before securing a part-time position in customer service at Under Armour, which eventually led to a full-time job. His drive and strategic thinking propelled him from customer service to sports marketing, product management, and finally, his current position.

Throughout his undergraduate studies, Cashman knew he wanted to work in the world of sports and athletics. His Orioles internships and the connections he made in Major League Baseball helped him get his foot in the door as a part-time employee at Under Armour, where he worked his way up to managing professional athlete accounts.

“When you’re in a large corporation like that, you have the ability to be strategic,” he says. “Try to think five years, 10 years from now, and think forward and craft your direction. That’s what I did. I started building relationships, sat down for lunches, and volunteered.”

Two and a half years ago, Cashman transferred into a sales role in the outdoor division at Under Armour, which encompasses more than 500 accounts across the United States and Canada. Through every position he’s held in the company, he has built relationships and taken advantage of shadowing and networking opportunities.

“Follow the passion and the field that you would like to see yourself in five to 10 years and evaluate organizations that fit that mold,” he says. “If you have the drive and the passion, you will get that job. It took me six years to get into the outdoor space, but it was my goal and I got there.”

Growing a Global Perspective 

Thomas Taylor ’08 serves as senior manager of Global Inbound Logistics & Transport at Under Armour. The International Relations major didn’t know what supply chain management was when he started college.

Shortly after graduation, Taylor worked as a management trainee for a logistics company that provided global transportation services. He leveraged that experience to secure a role in Under Armour’s supply chain operation for inbound logistics. During nine years at the company, he has risen from managing inbound transportation to the U.S. to overseeing global inbound transportation to markets worldwide from Southeast Asia, Central America, and the Middle East.

“Many of the skills I use in my current role I gained from industry experience,” he says, “but York College helped expose me to the knowledge and skills I needed to be successful.”

Hands-on experiences at York College, including participating in international relations simulations such as the Model United Nations and Model European Union helped prepare him for his future at Under Armour. Today his role involves constant collaboration and problem-solving in the global supply chain, addressing challenges such as the COVID-19 pandemic, attacks on shipping vessels, and delays at the Panama Canal. Taylor is focused on expanding his knowledge to become a licensed U.S. customs broker.

“I believe York College provided me with the knowledge that I needed to secure a role in the industry,” he says. “I found a niche in supply chain that I enjoyed and have continued to learn and develop within transportation, leading me to my current role.”

A Global Company For A Variety Of Interests 

The stories of Christopher Ports, Stephen Cashman, and Thomas Taylor showcase the diverse paths that York College graduates take to make meaningful contributions to a global brand such as Under Armour. 

Through a well-rounded liberal arts education, hands-on experiences, and the resilience required to navigate the ever-changing landscape of the professional world, all three have grown into their current roles and look forward to what the future holds. 

“At York College you get the skills to take the next step,” Ports says, “but there’s still going to be a lot of hard work, blood, sweat, and tears to make your career whatever you want it to be.”