Author: Maggie McEvilly

Rebecca Day Interns with the CT Sports Management Group, Inc.

Written By: Rebecca Day

My name is Rebecca Day and I am from Cheshire, Conn. This summer, I had the opportunity to work with the CT Sports Management Group, Inc., a company that administers the Nutmeg State Games (the only amateur Olympic-style sports festival in the state) and the CT Master’s Games (Olympic-style sports festival for older residents of the state). Based out of Middletown, Conn., we work closely with other local towns and venues to put on the Nutmeg State Games and the CT Master’s Games. I applied for this internship online, quickly heard back about scheduling an interview, and the rest is history.

I have had the opportunity to work on a variety of different tasks this summer. Some examples might be social media outreach, marketing, recruitment of individual athletes and teams, communicating with sponsors and the Board of Directors (BoD) and acting as a Site Director for the Games themselves. My special assignment as part of my internship was to put together the program, which was published in the New Britain Herald before the start of the Games, provide newsletters to the BoD updating them on the progress of the Games and compile a press kit for the local media. Through my work with NSG, I have been able to travel around the state and work with people from all different backgrounds. I have learned that working in the sport industry is a grueling, often tiresome job, but the feeling of accomplishment after a great event makes it all worthwhile.

My internship with the CT Sports Management Group, Inc. has really helped me learn more about event operations in the sport industry and all of the work that goes into putting on a successful tournament. Though I may not want to pursue a career in event operations, this internship has given me valuable, hands-on experience with recruitment, marketing and sponsorships, and community outreach; all areas which will be helpful in any future career. I hope that I will be able to utilize the relationships and knowledge I have built over the past four years to help propel me into a career in athletic administration or sport law.

Paul Wettemann Interns with the Brooklyn Nets Facility Operations Department

Written By: Paul WettemannPaul Wettemann, Sport Management undergraduate student, interns with the Brooklyn Nets Facility Operations Department.

My name is Paul Wettemann and I am from Guilford, Conn. This summer, I was a Facility Operations Intern with the Brooklyn Nets at their HSS Training Center in Brooklyn, New York. I was connected with my supervisor for this internship through one of my fellow UConn Sport Management classmates who interned with the Nets last summer. From there, I sent over my resume and spoke to him over the phone. I was then offered the position.

At my internship, I helped my supervisor and others on my staff in the day to day upkeep of the facility. This included tasks such as making sure the court was properly cleaned and maintained, ensuring that staff and player technology was working properly and guaranteeing that all equipment on the court was intact (nets on practice hoops, cardio equipment, etc.). In this position, I was able to gain a strong insight as to what facility managers do each day and what their major duties are. I also helped with setting up and coordinating sponsor events that were held at the training facility. I was given the opportunity to be the event manager for one of those events, as well as help with a few others. This gave me an opportunity to see how events are run with a professional franchise as well as understand all that goes into consideration when trying to provide a valuable experience for sponsors and other partners.

Photo of the Barclays Center in Brooklyn, New York taken by Paul Wettemann during his summer internship with the Brooklyn Nets.In addition to those events, I assisted in the setup and coordination for various player, general manager and coaching press conferences throughout the summer. This gave me an opportunity to see how the organization and its events functioned on an even larger scale, taking into consideration the media/press, as well as more specific staff needs. I also had the opportunity to network with various professionals that worked for Nets. I was able to meet people who worked in Facility Operations, Public Relations, Basketball Operations, Human Resources, as well as many other departments. It was a great experience and everyone who I interacted with during the summer was friendly and provided me with helpful advice. I was able to visit the Barclays Center on multiple occasions, for a tour and networking opportunity as well as an opportunity to volunteer at a Brooklyn Boxing event for the Event Services department.

My internship in Facility Operations allowed me to understand the full scope of the operations department of a professional franchise in facility maintenance as well as event management. I had experience in events before, but I have now had the opportunity to delve into facilities and learn more about the other side of operations. I am certainly interested in working in operations for a professional franchise in the future. I am now looking forward to building upon my knowledge in the sport industry during my senior year at school, through working with athletic operations and as a student manager for the men’s basketball team.

Patricia Bellamy and Jenna Stone: 2017 Provost’s Award Recipients for Excellence in Public Engagement

Two representatives frPatti Bellamy and jenna Stone pose with their plaques after receiving their awards at the ceremony.om the Neag School of Education at UConn, Patricia Bellamy and Jenna Stone, were awarded the 2017 Provost’s Award for Excellence in Public Engagement. The reception for the award winners was held on Nov. 14 to recognize these individuals for their exceptional dedication and significant contributions.

Patricia Bellamy, Assistant Director for Programs and Partnerships for Husky Sport, recently received the 2017 Provost’s Award for Excellence in Public Engagement in a full-time staff position.

Patti began volunteering for Husky Sport, a program established through the Department of Educational Leadership in the Neag School of Education, during her undergraduate career in 2009. She said that her initial passion for working with Husky Sport, and the relationships that she built in doing so, ultimately led her to switch her career focus and pursue a Master’s Degree in social work.

In working with students similar to and different from her, Patti learned that to truly connect with someone, one must be willing to understand where and who they are, without forgetting about his or her personal experience.Patti Bellamy with her award during the 2017 Provost's Award for Public Engagement ceremony.

“Meeting people where they are is a social work term that I think more and more industries are grasping, but it’s understanding where people are, learning from them, not trying to be the expert of their career paths and their history, just letting people lead, listening and understanding from that and growing from that,” Patti said.

After receiving the award, Patti said that she was so proud that her experiences are being recognized, especially because she is normally shy when it comes to sharing her own accomplishments.

“I smiled like crazy but I couldn’t believe it, it seriously had not even been on my mind,” she said.

Justin Evanovich, Managing Director of Husky Sport, said that the people and partners of Husky Sport benefit greatly from Patricia’s sustained leadership, caring support and positive energy.

“She shines in this work through both her ability to foster meaningful relationships, and her facilitation of effective systems in collaborative partnerships,” he said. “Patricia continues to positively empower others as part of her impactful leadership throughout all facets of Husky Sport.”

When asked about where she would like to see herself working in the future, Patti said that a few years ago she might have said that she would like to have her own program but Husky Sport seems to have changed that path for her.

“Everything for me starts with an experience, a relationship and connections, building connections with people and I don’t want just anything, I want to really enjoy it,” she said. “The next thing is going to have to be ten times more awesome, twenty times more awesome, for me to even consider.”

Jenna Stone, a senior Elementary Education major in the Neag School of Education, was awarded the 2017 Provost’s Award for Excellence in Public Engagement as an undergraduate student.

Jenna currently serves as the coordinator for Jumpstart within Community Outreach, but has volunteered with the program since her freshman year at UConn. One of her primary focuses in this position is to decrease the achievement gap in early childhood education while acting as a liaison between team leaders and student leaders in Community Outreach.

Jenna Stone with her award during the 2017 Provost's Award for Public Engagement ceremony.Jenna has learned while working with Jumpstart that she can act as a leader not only for preschool students, but for college students as well. After receiving the award this year, she said that she was more excited to share her experiences than to receive the recognition.

“Any time I get to share about the programs I’m involved with, I get excited,” Jenna said. “Service isn’t about the need to be recognized, but when you are it puts a big smile on your face.”

Not only is Jenna involved with Jumpstart, but she also serves as a volunteer for Husky Sport. Justin Evanovich said that Jenna possesses an extreme work ethic and a mature approach to managing her many endeavors.

“I’ve been fortunate to learn from Jenna about her work with Jumpstart, as well as her peer-and-programmatic leadership roles with Husky Sport, the Office of Community Outreach and the IB/M Neag Teacher Prep Program, to name only a few,” he said. “In her everyday life, Jenna impacts many as an active citizen. We at Husky Sport are excited to support her next steps at UConn and beyond.”

Upon graduation, Jenna said that she hopes to be working in either a first or third grade classroom or as a fifth or sixth grade math teacher. She said that ultimately, she hopes to find a school that is diverse and that encourages students to raise the bar every day.

Jenna mentioned that during her freshman year, she would have never expected to hold the Jumpstart coordinator position, or even serve as a volunteer coordinator as she did last year.

“I think when you’re passionate about a topic, and a program, you truly do give your everything and you love every minute of it,” she said. “That’s how Jumpstart makes me feel.”

Rosalie Pisano Interns with the Connecticut Tigers minor league baseball team

Written by: Rosalie Pisano

My name is Rosalie Pisano and I am from Bainbridge Island, Washington. This summer, I had the opportunity to intern with the minor league baseball team the Connecticut Tigers. The Tigers are the Single-A short season affiliate to the Detroit Tigers. The team plays in Norwich, about 35 minutes from UConn. I was able to use my connections with the Sport Management program at UConn to get this internship. A fellow classmate, Paul Wettemann, interned for the Tigers the summer prior to my year, and he put me in touch with the general manager of the organization.Rosalie Pisano interning with the Connecticut Tigers minor league baseball team.

Over the summer, I experienced a lot of different things with the Tigers. The stadium was host to the Northeastern Conference Championship for baseball at the very beginning of my internship. Before that, I helped to prepare the stadium for the upcoming season. During the season, I was able to try out many different parts to running a baseball team, from ticket sales and merchandising to promotions and front office work. This internship also taught me a lot about event planning, and all that goes into planning an event. Toward the end of the summer, the stadium hosted the Jeffrey Osborne Celebrity Softball Classic. Many professional athletes participated in the event, including some big names.

Looking back on my internship experience, I have learned how hard it is to run a minor league organization. Everyone in the organization loved what he or she was doing, and was willing to spend countless hours bettering the team. They helped me to learn more about what I want to do and who I want to be post graduation. I enjoyed helping to plan a lot of the events because, once it comes around, all of the hard work pays off into one culminating day. I also really enjoyed running the social media and thinking of fun new ways to increase our platform’s following. Looking forward, I think that I want to work more on the media and public relations side of things. Though I really enjoyed working for a baseball team, I think I would like to be more on the player side of things. I am interested in pursuing a career in player relations for a sport apparel company, or media relations in the sport field for a professional team.

Career Night in Sport 2017: Alumni/Undergraduate Networking Opportunity

Last month, the UConn Sport Management program held it’s fourth annual Career Night in Sport, a night where alumni came together with current undergraduate students to network, share their personal experiences working in the industry and provide advice on how to be successful in the sports field post graduation. Cristy Vincente, a senior in the program, coordinated this year’s Career Night with help from the department and Maggie McEvilly, also a senior this year, covered the event during the night of to receive feedback from both students and alumni.

Aaron Smith Interns with the Travelers Championship in Connecticut

Written by: Aaron Smith

My name is Aaron Smith and I am from Suffield, Conn. This past summer I took part in an internship with the Travelers Championship, located in Cromwell, Conn. I learned of the internship opportunity a few years ago during a Sport Business Association meeting, and decided to apply for the position last fall. I took part in an extensive hiring process that included submitting a recommendation, cover letter and resume, being brought in for an interview and having been told to create a presentation that was due 24 hours after the interview. A month later, I received an email congratulating me on having been accepted into the Travelers Championship internship pTravelers Championship Internship group photo, summer 2017rogram!

My internship was different than other summer internships in that it started in late January. I began working in the championship’s Hartford office as a member of the sales team. Working directly under both Directors of Business Development, I was charged with a wide variety of tasks throughout the semester. These responsibilities ranged from simply sending emails and making calls to hundreds upon hundreds of prospective partners, to researching new clients, drafting presentations and offering my valued opinions and suggestions on ways to make the tournament more successful. Once we moved out of the Hartford office and down to the tournament site in Cromwell, my responsibilities were widened to include setting up the tournament, traveling with my supervisors to attend meetings with partners and serving as the tournament contact for several events during tournament week.

This internship was an invaluable hands-on learning experience and one that taught me a great deal about the sport industry that I did not and could not have already known. An event the magnitude of the Travelers Championship demands unbelievable amounts of preparation. All of the staff and interns must be willing to put in extreme amounts of time and effort for it to be a success. When all was said and done, my personal reward was an incredible feeling of accomplishment, and the assurance that I was on the right career path. I feel very strongly that I want to be a part of a professional sport organization in a sales or marketing role, and I could not be more ready to further my education this year toward that goal.

Theresa Knutson: Wisconsin Interscholastic Athletic Association Summer Intern

Written by: Theresa Knutson

My name is Theresa Knutson and I am currently a senior at the University of Connecticut. This summer I was an intern at the WIAA, the association for high school athletics in Wisconsin. I worked at the organization’s headquarters in Stevens Point Wisconsin. My father is on the board of control for Wisconsin athletics and has a meeting once a month at the headquarters. Because of the connections he established with many of the employees, I was able to meet them and after applying was asked asked to help work this summer.

State baseball tournament stadiumThis summer started off very busy because the state track tournament was held two weeks after I started my internship. It was an amazing experience to help get everything ready for the tournament, including getting every team’s packet filled and typing the information that they would need regarding the meet. I also had to email the participating schools to get the pole vault sheets to make sure that everyone followed the rules. I was also able to sit in on the track seeding for the state tournament and was in charge of organizing any extra qualifiers. Each of the three divisions participating in the tournament only had three extra qualifiers. Because the tournament is run mostly by volunteers, there is a volunteer breakfast held in the morning that I helped out at and then headed over to the track to get ready. On Friday of that weekend, I was responsible for handing out medals. It was awesome to do put medals around these athletes and see how grateful they were after receiving one. On Saturday, I measured the triple jump. This was very cool to do because they had an electronic measuring kit, which made it easy to work with.

The state softball tournament was the next big event for the summer, which was very interesting to see how it was run and how different the process was from the track meet. During playoffs, The WIAA is responsible for scheduling the umpires, an extremely difficult process because you have to ensure that the umpires have no conflicts with the team, that they are not traveling too far to umpire a game and that they do not umpire the same team during the playoffs. It was nice to help with this because it took a lot of organization and planning and I felt very valued because I had my own division to work on and I accomplished it.

Steph Hauser, my supervisor who is in charge of softball, said that the umpire hiring process went more smoothly this year than in the past. At the tournament, I was in charge of making sure that the time between innings ran smoothly because they had only allotted about a minute of time between innings. I also spent a lot of time working directly with umpires and getting them water or towels throughout the game. I gained a lot of connections through this, which will definitely help me if I want to further my career in high school athletics.

Working at the USA Central District Hockey CampThough these tournaments were the big projects that I worked on this summer, I also helped with in creating a new football project. I was responsible for emailing every school to get updated photos of their football facilities so that we could figure out which schools stadiums to use during playoffs. I also spent time working on the cross-country archives booklet, the state baseball tournament and was lucky enough to go to the National Federation of high school sports annual conference. I also worked at a weeklong USA hockey camp for the Midwest with high school aged players.

I was able to take away and learn a lot from this internship. I saw how much goes into high school athletics from a school, state and countrywide aspect and it was fascinating because I was able to see how much the organization is dedicated to the kids and not to making money. I learned that while working in athletics, every person is valued and encouraged to share his or her own opinions. I was able to gain confidence during my internship because I was given responsibility. I can now see myself working in high school athletics after having this summer internship because I felt excited to go to work every day. I can see myself pursuing a career as an executive director or working for the NFHS itself, but I am fully aware that I will have to work from the bottom and make strong connections in order to get to that position.

Patrick Rowley Interns with UConn Athletic Administration this Summer

Written by: Patrick Rowley

My name is Patrick Rowley and I am a 20-year-old Sport Management major from Newtown, Conn. with an interest in data analytics in the sport industry. This summer, I was an intern with the University of Connecticut Athletic Administration, working for eight different sports teams during my time with the department. My office was located directly inside the Hugh S. Greer Fieldhouse in the middle of the UConn campus, directly adjacent to the Athletic Business Office. During my time working in the business office, I got to know the head of the athletic administration, Kim Gedney, quite well and she told me that she could use another intern this summer and asked if I would help.

The biggest aspect of my job this summer was helping with coach’s travel for recruiting and convention purposes. This includedfinding their preferred flight times, booking hotels and rental cars, handling travel reimbursements and making last minute adjustments for coaches when they need changes on the fly. However, this job was also interesting in terms of seeing what it is like to be on the bottom of the totem pole of sorts in an organization and seeing the eclectic nature of tasks that were passed down to me. This could be as mundane as walking across campus to drop off a form, helping determine how much money needs to be added to certain accounting lines in order to pay invoices and helping to choose and order apparel to give out at promotional golf tournaments. This job has truly given me an entire additional perspective of the sports industry and having both played and coached in the past, it was fascinating to see all of the grunt work that goes into holding game at the division one level. I have also made some tremendous connections in my office, other departments in UConn and among UConn’s incredibly talented coaching staff.

My internship with the UConn Athletic Administration helped me learn how to think on my feet and react to crises in a calm and timely manner. I learned a tremendous amount of information this summer and ultimately, I think that this experience was the one that will help me the most in the future. Although I loved interning in this office, I think that I want my future in athletics to be on the data analytics side, particularly for baseball. This is something I have been slowly realizing for years, but I wanted to try out many different potential paths before throwing myself into a specific field completely and I now think that I am ready for that. I have been in contact with the Baseball Info Solutions company, based out of Allentown, PA, and have reached a tentative agreement with management regarding an internship next summer that I cannot wait for.

 

Kyle Caron and Maddy Hooper team up as interns at The First Tee in Connecticut

Kyle Cooper during his internship experience, golfing summer 2017Written by: Kyle Caron

My name is Kyle Caron and I am a recent graduate of the University of Connecticut, having received my Bachelor’s degree in Sport Management. This past summer, I interned with The First Tee of Connecticut in Cromwell, Conn., this region’s chapter of the international First Tee organization. The First Tee is an organization that focuses on teaching the game of golf and instilling important life skills in young players. During my time there, I was able to gain experience in many aspects of running a non-profit organization such as marketing, financial development and community outreach.

For the first half of my internship, I worked in several community outreach efforts. This included going to different golf courses to teach clinics to children who may have not had access to the game otherwise as well as attending networking and marketing fairs to organize demo stations for kids to play in while I explained to their parents what The First Tee is all about. I also spent time volunteering at various tournaments throughout the state, as a representative of the organization, to help foster relationships with local golf clubs to attempt to spread the word about our programs and attract new students. I spent the second half of my internship working as a counselor for our Summer Camp program where I supervised campers and taught them ways and techniques to improve their game.

My time spent with The First Tee of Connecticut allowed me to learn more about what it takes to run a golf and youth development organization, specifically a non-profit one. As a non-profit organization targeted at kids who want to learn the game, I saw how creating relationships with other organizations in the community could be just as beneficial to an organization’s reputation as a large marketing campaign. I also saw the impact that sports can have on the development of a child’s life by teaching them ethics and values to live by such as respect, perseverance and integrity. Many of the kids who came up through The First Tee program are now successful college students with plenty of accolades and scholarships that reflect the character that our programs assisted in building. Because of the effects I saw due to children’s involvement with The First Tee, I would like to further pursue a career in sport-based youth development and try to make that same difference in the lives of future generations. Working with The First Tee of Connecticut was a valuable and enriching experience, and I am very grateful for the opportunity.

Written by: Maddy Hooper

My name is Maddy Hooper and I am from West Hartford, Conn. I did my summer internship at The First Tee of Connecticut, which is located in Cromwell on the grounds of TPC River Highlands. I first saw the position of Community Outreach Intern for this summer in one of the Sport Management weekly newsletters. I noticed it one day over Christmas break and immediately emailed Mark, my boss from this summer, and sent in my application. I interviewed for the position at the end of March and found out a week later that I gotten the position.

Golfer on a beautiful day during summer 2017 internship experienceI did a lot of different things this summer. In my first few weeks before the kids came for the summer, we worked with children after school and completed tasks around the office. A few of the big projects that I completed during this time were reorganizing all of the closets and storage spaces in our building. The week before school got out was the week of the Travelers Championship. This was truly the busiest week of my life. We ran a ton of events that week and worked all over the course during the pro-am and tournament. This week was really cool for me because I met tons of important people in the golf world including the president of the PGA Paul Levy, and many professional golfers, such as Rory Mclroy and Paul Casey. Once school got out, I really began the work that I did this summer. For the remainder of the summer, I spent most of my time at different summer camps all over the state giving golf lessons. I went to places like Camp Courant, Channel 3 Kids Camp and Boys and Girls Club of New Haven.

My main takeaway from this summer is that it’s important to be helpful in every way possible. I became really close with everyone that I worked with and the full-time employees called me “the best intern ever.” I think they called me this because I was willing to do anything they asked me to do and did everything to the best of my ability, even if some days this was just sorting golf balls and moving cases of water. You can really leave your mark in a place by doing more then what is asked of you and making positive and friendly impressions. I hope to use the skills that I learned this summer and bring them with me as I pursue a career in non-profit youth development. The First Tee or any organization similar is where I would love to end up after graduation.

Kelly Andujar Interns at Stonehill Sports Camps

Written by: Kelly Andujar

Spending my summer working for the 2017 Stonehill Sports Camps has been one of the most important learning experiences of my life. I had the opportunity to work with a group of staff that I now consider family. My time working for the sports camps consisted of long hours and sleepless nights. My goal for the internship was to learn about the administrative side of the sports industry and in doing so, I gained valuable experience in marketing, customer service, event organization and coach communication.

I learned quickly that people often notice when tasks are done with half-effort. I worked for the camps with the mentality that I would give it my best and soak up as much knowledge as possible. Without the support of my fellow interns and work-study students, I would not be where I am today. We relied on each other during difficult times and trusted each other’s judgment. No one can be successful alone, and I’ve learned more from my peers than I could have ever imagined. I was pushed outside of my comfort zone and thought critically about my role in the sports camps. I recognized my strengths and weaknesses and held myself to the highest standards of professionalism.   

Although I constantly received praise during my internship, I always wanted to find ways in which I could improve. I became heavily invested in the sports camps and felt personally responsible for its successes and failures. There were instances in which I felt like I needed to do everything to make sure the day ran smoothly. This wasn’t due to a lack of trust between my fellow colleagues but rather my “do it all” mindset. I could have reached out to my coworkers for a lending hand and to share some of the responsibilities. I am constantly learning and growing and will use this experience as a tool to improve.

The internship was also very time-consuming and I rarely had time off. Courtney Osier, my supervisor and sports camps coordinator, noticed how much I was working and knew when I need time to myself. I learned that taking time off is important for peace of mind and personal development. As I prepare for life after college, this experience has shaped my understanding of the work force. The sports industry is growing competitively every day and I want to stick out as a “must-have” candidate. I want to show future employers my diverse skill sets and abilities. This experience was more of a “resume-builder,” but will allow me to jump start and be prepared for a future career in athletics. Lastly, I would like to thank Courtney Osier for believing in me and allowing me the opportunity to grow as a young man. I am forever grateful.