HIGH POINT, N.C., Aug. 2, 2017 – The Radio City Rockettes, the New York Knicks, the New York Rangers and the New York Liberty. These are just a few of the major brands three High Point University students are working with through their internships with The Madison Square Garden Company in New York.
Rising juniors Cassandra Diaz and Mitch Rissmiller and rising senior Sarah Obletz are spending the summer in New York as student associates in various marketing roles for the company.
Diaz, a sport and event management major from Wadsworth, Illinois, is interning with the integrated media planning team. She looks for promotional partners for MSG properties and events and supports the development of integrated media plans for a variety of sport and entertainment events, including the Radio City Christmas Spectacular and the WNBA’s New York Liberty.
One of her most unique experiences was shadowing the sports properties team at a WWE Live SummerSlam Heatwave Tour event.
“This shadowing opportunity allowed me to assist with a VIP meet and greet, remain behind-the-scenes and be exposed to professional wrestlers up close and personal,” Diaz says. “It was surreal seeing the arena filled with energized fans of all ages. All of the pre-event media planning and marketing promotions came together to fill the arena for this event.”
Rissmiller, a strategic communication and business administration major from Reading, Pennsylvania, is working in sport and entertainment marketing and digital strategy. He is a part of creating campaigns and planning digital strategy for eight of MSG’s entities. This includes tasks like putting together a competitive industry analysis for the Rockettes, working on a playoffs campaign for the New York Liberty and coordinating a creative campaign for the Rockettes’ partnership with Pandora Jewelry.
“Working on premier entertainment and sport brands like these has been a dream, as I am able to influence brands that have a long, important history in New York as well as reach millions of people through their various channels,” says Rissmiller. “I work around individuals that have tremendous experience and wide networks, and learning from them has been an unreal experience.”
Obletz, a marketing major from Buffalo, New York, is interning as a marketing associate for the New York Liberty. She researches fan development marketing tactics and partnerships and works with the community relations team to coordinate events throughout New York City. She also is helping with the planning and execution of six game-day presentations, including autograph sessions, giveaway items, exclusive fan experiences, and pre- and post-game courtside events.
“My second day at MSG I got to work an afternoon New York Liberty game,” says Obletz. “It was my first time in the arena and I got to sit courtside for portions of the game. I also have gotten to interact with a lot of the players. They’re a great group of women and a lot of fun to work with.”
Obletz says she secured her internship by connecting with MSG recruiters on LinkedIn. HPU’s Office of Career and Professional Development helped her set up her account and use it to its full potential for networking.
All three students credit their coursework and campus involvement in helping them establish time management, professionalism and communication skills. They also name faculty from the Phillips School of Business and Nido R. Qubein School of Communication for mentoring them and preparing them to work in a competitive environment.
“We have been blessed to have incredible professors and faculty at High Point University that have set us up for success,” says Rissmiller. “Because of our interactions with our professors, we understand how the business world works and are able to translate that into meaningful experiences in the workplace, as we have this summer at MSG.”