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Dickinson College Rising Senior Gets a Firsthand Look at the Business Side of Sports Through New York Jets Internship

Melding her passions for sports and community engagement, Erica Wells '19 found opportunities abound as a community relations intern with the New York Jets.

Erica Wells '19, The New York Jets Atlantic Health Training Center

Majors:

Sociology.

Internship title:

Community relations intern.

What I do, day to day:

My role as the community relations intern for the New York Jets consists of assisting my supervisors with administrative support tasks, ranging from filing to sending out autographed Jets memorabilia to be used by community-based organizations for fundraising. I use the online database to respond to donation requests from nonprofit organizations and complete small research projects such as gathering information for an upcoming community outreach event, creating a contact list of local high-school football teams for the Jets Youth Football League and compiling website design ideas for the Jets 50/50 raffle. In addition, I have the opportunity to sit in on department meetings and phone calls with partner organizations. At the end of the summer, I will be involved with the Jets Annual Anti-Bullying Symposium taking place at MetLife Stadium—leading up to the event I will be assisting in the preparation to make the event a success. Each day, my routine is different, I am faced with new tasks, and I am able to observe and learn from those around me.

Other internships:

Last summer I interned at the National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum in Cooperstown, New York, in the education and public programming department. My internships have helped me discover what kind of environment I would like to work in. I really enjoy working in a professional sports environment, and when I graduate in May 2019, I hope to have a job or internship experience focusing on community engagement within sports.

Most valuable part of this experience:

The most valuable part of this internship experience has been the opportunity to experience the corporate/business side of sports. Working in the Jets' corporate office this summer is very different from my last summer experience in a nonprofit sports setting; it has been helpful to see both sides as well as the value that sports and sports figures can offer communities. Being immersed in this environment has helped solidify my passion for working with nonprofit organizations in the sports world.

Advice for students considering internships:

I originally applied for this position a few years ago and did not have enough experience to be offered an internship. After interning at the Hall of Fame and working in the athletics department at Dickinson over the past year, I applied for this position again and was offered the opportunity to intern with the Jets this summer. I would advise students looking for internships to continue to apply and re-apply for opportunities you are passionate about. In the meantime, build up your resume to show the employer that your experience makes you a good fit for the position. A rejection does not determine your fate—rather applying for the same position shows the employer that you are interested and passionate about the opportunity.

How this internship has helped me:

My internship experience this summer has better prepared me for next year and for life after Dickinson because it has taught me the value of working in a team. The Jets Community Relations Department has four staff members (including myself). While each of the full-time employees have different responsibilities, it is the collaboration of their ideas and shared efforts that make their department successful. I have also learned that each department at the Jets organization is connected in some way, and therefore the success within one department determines that of another. Here at the Jets, I have been able to observe the process and execution of team collaboration, and I believe that this skill will be useful in my future.

Post-Dickinson plans:

After I graduate from Dickinson, I would love to combine my interest in sports and community engagement in some way. While it may sound cliché, sports have the capacity to bring people together, to help to melt differences and to develop a more open and accepting society. Sports and community work have always played a big role in my life and I hope to find a career in which I will be able to do both.

Learn more about internships at Dickinson.

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Published August 28, 2018