This year I was a Marketing and Game Day Experience intern with University of Washington Athletics. The past year involved a diverse set of day-to-day activities, most of which depended on the time of the year and which sports were in season. There were two main duties that comprised the internship, and those were office hours and working at sporting events.
Office hours for the internship involved game day preparation and marketing work. The game day preparation involved creating and editing scripts for the pre-game and in-game activities during games, and it also involved organizing and gathering giveaways and props that would be used. The marketing material that we worked on involved brainstorming and figuring out ways to implement certain activities at events that could increase the number of people coming to games. One example of an activity that I helped with was during Men’s Basketball. Pac 12 wanted to do student section videos that they could post online, and when brainstorming with my boss, we came up with an idea for cheerleaders and Harry to do a “human surfboard” in the student section. A few weeks later I saw the video of the cheerleaders doing that on the Pac 12 website, and it was so cool to see one of my ideas come to fruition.
When we worked games, there were two main elements that we had to prepare and run and those were pre-game and in-game events. Pre-game activities could include giveaways like Starbucks cups, hats, shirts, and other fun prizes to the people who arrive to the games early. The in-game work was different for every sport, but our main role was to carry out tasks that keep fans engaged and interested in the game, even during time outs or half time. We did this by running half-time competitions, shows, and even directing what would go up on the screen during the breaks.
Throughout my time working with UW Athletics, the interns and I were given several opportunities to network with people both within and outside of our department. All the interns became very close from working together during games and office hours, and our department always held a quarterly event. Our department also held a few round table sessions where people from other departments would come and talk to the group of interns and explain their job and experiences, and give us their information so we could talk to them again in the future. This internship not only gave me a year of great experience, but it also helped me build relationships with my peers and with people already deeply involved in the industry.
If any person is interested in getting involved in the sports industry, this is a great starting place. I learned a lot about working behind the scenes in sports, and was given great opportunities to write scripts and co-direct some NCAA Division One games. Working in this internship taught me how to keep calm under pressure to create an exciting and entertaining experience for all the fans. This internship gave me great experience that could be applied for any industry that I want to work in the future, along with several great connections. If anyone is open to working with a group of highly driven people who create an extremely fun and motivational work environment, this internship would fit their requirements.