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College Sports Operations - Event Management & Georgetown University

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College Sports Operations - Event Management & Georgetown University

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Conducted an interview with Dan Levine of the Athletics Dept. at Georgetown University, presented the successes & challenges of Event Management in college athletics departments

Conducted an interview with Dan Levine of the Athletics Dept. at Georgetown University, presented the successes & challenges of Event Management in college athletics departments

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College Sports Operations - Event Management & Georgetown University

  1. 1. • 29 varsity level sports teams – Men’s sports: baseball, basketball, crew, football, golf, lacrosse, sailing, soccer, swimming and diving, tennis, track and field / cross country – Women’s sports: basketball, field hockey, golf, lacrosse, rowing, sailing, soccer, softball, swimming and diving, tennis, track and field / cross country, volleyball • Most teams compete in the Big East Conference – Men’s football competes in Division I-AA Patriot League • Men’s basketball is the school’s most successful program – Home men’s basketball games played at Washington D.C.’s Verizon Center (Washington Wizards, Washington Capitals)
  2. 2. • 2000—2004: The University of Connecticut – Bachelor of Science in Management – Varsity swimmer • 2008—2009: University of Washington – Master of Education in Intercollegiate Athletic Leadership • 9/08—11/08: Football Game Day – Guest Services Manager at University of Washington • 9/08—8/09: Summer School Athletic Director / Operations Assistant at Lakeside School • 1/10—8/10: Volunteer Marketing Assistant in Dept. of Athletics at American University • 8/10—6/11: Assistant Equipment & Operations Manager at Georgetown University
  3. 3. • Oversee operational needs for all varsity teams including facility preparation for practices, competition and camps • Act as primary Event Manager for Men’s and Women’s Soccer, Field Hockey, Women’s Volleyball, Women’s Basketball, Women’s Lacrosse and Softball • Assist with event management for Football, Men’s Basketball and Men’s Lacrosse • Hire, train and supervise game day staff for home events
  4. 4. • Coordinate and oversee summer sports camp operations needs and insurance policies • Provide visiting teams with travel guides, scheduled practice time and locker room availability in addition to other needs • Assist in facility scheduling for practices, athletic competitions and outside events • Place and oversee all work orders to completion for athletic facilities • Coordinate contracts and payroll for officials for all athletic department home events
  5. 5. • Thinking quickly – Things will happen on game day that you won’t be prepared for – Figure out problems on the fly • Preparation and organization – If there is a big event on the weekend, the week should be spent preparing for it and organizing your own head – If you are organized, you’ll be able to handle what comes up • Knowing how to work with other people – Communicating issues effectively
  6. 6. • Coaches – Getting acquainted with coaches (different styles, processes) – See what they need, effectively accomplish what is asked – Get in touch a day or two before game day (do not break focus) • Other Departments – Keep in touch, checklist of everyone you need to reach – Preseason meetings to walk through everyone’s responsibilities
  7. 7. • Priority goes to in-season teams • Fields and facilities are assigned to specific teams – Main gym goes to basketball teams, turf field to football and lacrosse teams, grass field to soccer teams • Men’s basketball at the Verizon Center – Saturday games typically played around noon to allow for floor switchover to NBA’s Wizards floor or NHL’s Capitals ice rink – Monday/Tuesday night games coordinated with Big East and ESPN
  8. 8. • Writing contracts, coordinating payroll • Assigning officials to events – Notifying official what locker room they’ll be using – Instructing officials where to park – Coordinates the event
  9. 9. • (Revamped) Visitors’ Guide – Directions, hotels, restaurants – Includes a sheet asking for requests (practice times, game day requirements, mode of transportation) – Coordinating parking • Scheduling practice time and locker room availability • Managing facility use for visiting teams
  10. 10. • NCAA Division I Men’s Basketball Tournament – 3 of last 6 years, Verizon Center hosted opening weekend games (most recently in 2011) – Site walkthroughs months in advance – Addressing what signage can and cannot be displayed – In depth, specific details (how locker rooms / benches are set up) – Biggest challenge: managing locker rooms for 8 schools • Big East Women’s Lacrosse Tournament – Managing 4 locker rooms, capacities and distances • Hosts Commencement out of arena; concerts on occasion
  11. 11. • Limited parking on campus – Visitors asked to use main garage for faculty and staff – Required to pay for a day’s parking (free on weekends) – Buses typically park right by the arena • Currently looking to generate revenue to pay for parking – Difficult to accomplish since it is out of Georgetown’s control, especially at the Verizon Center • Most fans show up by Metro (D.C. Subway)
  12. 12. • Totally unique at Georgetown • Challenges are often facility-based – Facilities are not very updated – Facilities are not very manageable for ESPN or CBS • Last-minute issues – It doesn’t matter how prepared you are—something is going to pop up. – Minutes before an event, a new issue can arise
  13. 13. Most satisfying element: a smooth event – The fans have a good experience – The fields are set – The officials are happy – The visiting team was taken care of – You provided good customer service – The coaches have no complaints – The coaches say Thank You When everyone is happy and has had a good experience, it’s rewarding knowing you did it, and you did it right.
  14. 14. I asked Mr. Levine if he honestly enjoyed working in higher education, and if it was something he found fulfilling. Without hesitation, he replied, “Yes. Absolutely.” He reflected he was a student-athlete (a swimmer at UConn) and that it was a great experience. After working in private businesses with marketing, Mr. Levine felt an impulse to get back into college athletics. He said that college athletics in most cases is the highest level of athletics. When it fixes in with higher education and a college campus community, it’s really valuable. After a few years, Mr. Levine wanted to be in the environment. He said there are definitely challenges and complaints, and that despite being pushed back it pays to work hard—it goes a way for a student-athlete’s experience and their relationships, and is ultimately beneficial for everybody. “When the kids come away having a good experience, I enjoy it.”
  15. 15. • Getting your foot in the door is really difficult – Mr. Levine worked 4-5 internships, 6 months of volunteer work – Put his life on hold for 3 ½ to 4 years to get his foot in the door • Commit to it, be passionate – Keep pushing and make contacts – Offer help and work for free – Take advantage of an opportunity – Position yourself to get a job • If you want it bad enough, eventually it will work out. – Sometimes it doesn’t pay well and the hours are terrible. – But if it’s what you want to do, the work makes up for the free time.

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