Our Faculty

Michael Santoro
Michael Santoro

Professor/Coordinator of Sport Management

  • Southern New Hampshire University
  • Niagara College

Michael Santoro is program coordinator and professor of Sport Management in the School of Hospitality, Tourism and Sport at Niagara College.

Professor Santoro brings more than 35 years of related experience to the classroom, ranging from working in senior management positions in the private sector to teaching various sport management and business courses at Niagara College.

In addition to being extensively involved in the golf industry, Professor Santoro is active on campus and in the community, particularly in the area of community sports where he has coached baseball and basketball. He has also served on many sport steering committees such as Toronto2015 Pan Am/Parapan Am Games University/College Steering Committee, Niagara College Foundation Golf Classic and the 2013 CCAA Men’s Volleyball National Championships.


Email: msantoro@niagaracollege.ca

Nicole Forrester

Nicole ForresterI am incredibly passionate about the world of sport. I have lived it, studied it, and worked in the industry for more than 15 years. I have been a professional athlete in the sport of Track and Field for 12 years, and have represented Canada on 20 National Teams including the Olympic Games. With, the exception of the Olympic Games, I have medaled on every major games team I’ve been on. However, it isn’t the medals that I’ve won that have made sport important to me, but rather the journey it’s provided. While I still train, I am currently transitioning out of the world of sport as a professional athlete. I attended the University of Michigan on an athletic scholarship and double majored in Sports Management & Communication (Bachelor of Arts) and Movement Science (Bachelor of Science). I went on to do a Master of Education in Exercise & Sport Psychology at the University of Texas and I am currently a PhD candidate in Sport Psychology from Michigan State University. Additionally, I sit on several committees including the Toronto 2015 Pan American Games Athlete Advisory Committee, and the Canadian Olympic Committee, Athlete’s Commission. I believe in the power of sport and passionate about creating a more robust sporting culture in Canada.

I can tell you if you are truly passionate about the development, promotion and managing of sport the opportunities are endless. Now has never been a better time to be involved in sport in Canada. Come with an open mind, a desire to discover your interest area and where YOU fit best in the world of sport, a passion to be successful and good work ethics, and you’ll be amazed at what awaits you! Look forward to meeting you all!

My Teaching Philosophy: I believe in challenging students to redefine their academic potential and pursue their enhanced goals. I am committed to effective communication and I encourage a deep comprehension and ability to apply concepts learned inside as well as outside the classroom. A student-centered classroom involving dynamic dialogues is my favoured approach.

Chris Psutka
Chris Psutka

Chris Psutka is a full time professor of Sport Management in the school of Hospitality, Tourism & Sport at Niagara College. Previously he served as the field placement coordinator where he provided mentorship and taught students the professionalism skills needed to succeed in the sport industry.

Academically, Chris received a Bachelor of Sport Management (Honours) from Brock University and a Master of Science in Sport Administration from University of Louisville. He has an extensive background in Sport for Development (SFD). Using the principles of Olympism and Sport For Development Theory, he has created and implemented SFD programs in Louisville, Kentucky, and Trinidad and Tobago. He also has a plethora of experience in intercollegiate athletics in both Canada and the United States.

Chris has a passion for sport, education and helping others, which he displays when working with his students. He uses the Problem-Based Learning pedagogy to facilitate learning, provide mentorship and guidance to future sport management professionals. Helping students maximize their academic and professional potential is his number one goal.

Shelley Merlo

Shelley MerloShelley Merlo is a full time professor in the School of Hospitality, Tourism and Sport. Shelley has more than 25 years of experience working in the event industry managing major events such as the Road World Cycling Championships, the Bell Canadian Open (golf) and TO2015 Pan Am Para Pan Am Games – Hamilton’s Cultural Celebrations.

Professor Merlo has more than ten years of teaching experience in both Event Management and Sport Management programs at Niagara College. She teaches various sport industry related courses including Sport Tourism and Sponsorship/Fundraising.

Academically, Shelley earned a Bachelor of Physical Education from McMaster University and holds a CFEE (Certified Festival Event Executive) designation from International Festivals and Events Association (IFEA). She is a past board member of Niagara Food Festival, Festival and Events Ontario Association and International Live Events Association- Toronto Chapter. Shelley is also the recipient of Tourism Hamilton Awards and a Hall of Fame Inductee with Festivals and Events Ontario.

Jenn Dey

Jenn DeyJenn Dey is the Field Placement and Program Support Officer for the Sport Management Program at Niagara College. She coordinates field placements, provides mentorship and coaching to the students, preparing them with the skills to be successful in their placements and future careers in the sport industry.

Jenn has a diverse academic background including a Bachelor of Arts in Sociology and a Post-Graduate Diploma in Sports Administration from Concordia University, where she was a member of the varsity women’s hockey team. She completed her internship with Hockey Canada, before moving to southern Ontario. Through a progressive career in Marketing with the parent company of Jack Astor’s restaurants, Jenn managed the sports partnerships with the Hamilton Tiger-Cats, Toronto Argos and the Toronto Rock.

In addition, Jenn has completed the Human Resources Management program at Niagara College. As a Manager of Talent Acquisition, Jenn has gained valuable experience working with students to identify work placement opportunities. Jenn is very passionate about life-long learning and providing exceptional experiences through mentoring and coaching for the students of Niagara College.