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Women college athletes have vast career potential, making up only 2% of college students, but representing 52% of

women in the C-suite

(reporting to the CEO).


Rookie Career Accelerator

At Her Next Play, we want embolden women athletes to grow and lead authentically, build their team of support, and embrace career ambition. We have created the Rookie Career Accelerator to do just that. The Rookie Career Accelerator program is a one of a kind career building experience that invests in a diverse cohort of high potential college athletes during their early years in the workplace. Through retreats, monthly learning labs, and community experiences, participants grow as authentic leaders, build professional skills, develop a team of support, and embrace career ambition.


The goal of the Rookie Career Accelerator is to advance more women, particularly women of color, LGBTQIA+ and first-generation college graduates, to more powerful roles more quickly in the Twin Cities, helping narrow the gender and racial leadership gap.


The nine month Rookie Career Accelerator includes innovative retreats and monthly learning labs, access to mentors and connections, and interactive development experiences, providing a one of a kind career building experience for women athletes in the early years of their career.

Our Why

There is a persistent gender gap in women’s leadership representation in almost all sectors of America; and the gap is even greater for women of color. At the same time, we know research into gender, ethnic and culture diversity in corporate leadership shows that the most diverse companies are more likely than ever to outperform less diverse peers on profitability.

Sports is a great incubator for this talent pipeline.  For women and girls, sports participation is a critical tool to challenge gender stereotypes and to develop skills that prepare for a career, and being a student-athlete is a powerful catalyst for leadership potential. Yet, many athletes in this untapped talent pool face barriers that slow or limit their career trajectory.


Take Charge of Your Career!

Apply to be part of the 2024 Rookie Career Accelerator Cohort

After wrapping up a successful inaugural Rookie Career Accelerator Cohort in 2022, we are now recruiting for the next cohort to kick off in September of 2024. If you are interested in participating in the 2024 cohort, please click HERE to learn more about who should apply, and sign up to receive the application when it is released.


The Rookie Career Accelerator is a unique opportunity to take charge of your career.  Participating will help you develop the skills, knowledge, connections, access, and confidence to accelerate your career and advance more quickly into leadership roles.  In this program you will:

  • Build self-awareness around your purpose and personal leadership style

  • Gain a community of support through a strong team of peers and direct tailored one on one mentoring

  • Develop critical professional skills like personal branding, relationship building, negotiations, and communications

  • Gain access to mentors, industry leaders, and connection opportunities in the Twin Cities Community

  • Find inspiration to break barriers and be bold in your career aspirations

  • Develop your inclusive leadership skills

  • Build your financial literacy


Mentor the Next Generation of Women Leaders

We're looking for former college athletes in business and front office sports to act as mentors and help coach and guide participants through their Rookie Career Accelerator (RCA) experience. Mentors will attend select RCA events and build a relationship with their RCA mentee through both program events and individual mentor meetings. As a mentor, you will also have the opportunity to be part of a community of former college athletes and women leaders in the Twin Cities.  Learn more and sign up HERE to mentor the next generation of women leaders.


Join Us on the Field - Become a Rookie Career Accelerator Sponsor

Her Next Play is committed to picking up the pace of change. Now is the time to invest in a pipeline of leadership talent that is ready for the challenge and that reflects inclusivity, equity, and opportunity. With your support, we can accelerate the career trajectory of women athletes and engage more businesses with a high potential, diverse pipeline of talent.  If you are interested in becoming a sponsor, please reach out and send your information to:

*This program is funded through donations, grants, and sponsorships and is offered at no cost to participants.

The 2021-22 Rookie Career Accelerator Cohort was filled with members that had careers spanning over 17 companies, 14 industries, 15 colleges, and 9 sports, they represent the future of women leaders.


Members of the 2021-22 Cohort had the opportunity to attend various workshops that brought attention to utilizing the skills you develop through playing sports to advance your career. The workshops were a mix of interactive activities and guest speakers; both aspects brought attention to certain skills that can be an asset to career growth. Mentors were connected with members as a resourceful relationship that could provide insightful advice and act as a guide when working towards accelerating your career. 

There was a lot of success within the inaugural cohort, both within personal and professional growth. Members gained a whole new level of confidence and a support system to follow along throughout the early years of their careers. 

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Rookie Career Accelerator Team

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Stacy Solow

Adrienne Jordan

Sara Wegmann

Elise Ryan

Sydney Seeley

"I LOVED the opportunity to connect and build friendships with other women in a very similar life situation as myself. Former women athletes in the professional world isn't something that you see often so I loved meeting others who can relate to me. I feel like we will keep in touch post-RCA."

CAN Member

Rookie Career Accelerator latest blog posts

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