After having the chance to intern for FOX Sports Arizona during the summer of 2016 and having the opportunity to meet many people in this company on top of working during multiple Arizona Diamondbacks, Phoenix Suns, and Arizona Cardinals events, one fundamental thing has stuck with me. Nearly everyone who works in the sports industry loves their job. While all jobs come with ups and downs just like being a fan of nearly any sports team. Working in the sports industry is similar to being a Yankees fan -you win a lot more than you lose. (Except 2001 Diamondbacks fans, never forget!)
My name is Anthony Studnicka and I am entering my Junior year as a Marketing major in the W.P. Carey School of Business at Arizona State University. My life has always revolved around sports since watching and playing at a young age, to now working around them as I mature. This summer I spent my time serving as the Marketing and Communications Intern here at FOX Sports Arizona.
If I were to be asked to summarize my work in one word, the word I would choose wouldn’t be anywhere near “work” at all. A more fitting term to describe it would be invigorating. There are two main reasons I use this lexicon. The first being plain and simple, setting a 7:30 a.m. alarm isn’t very appealing for many 20 year-old college students. But every morning as I was stretching across my bed and reaching to my night stand to shut the roaring noise on my phone off, it was a little bit easier knowing that my job or daily tasks for my internship were going to be unique that day. To put it short – I woke up enthusiastic on a daily basis. Which leads me into my second integral point which is working in the sports industry you have the relish of something incredible, no two days are the same. The sports world changes every few minutes. New things are happening, new players are emerging, contracts are growing, teams are winning – no two games start and end with the same tale. With that spontaneity is perpetual, which leads to regular excitement as an employee for FOX Sports Arizona.
The most valuable thing I will take away from this internship experience is the ability to succeed on my own and not needing anyone to hold my hand to complete daily marketing tasks. I’ve learned how to essentially market anything in the sports industry face to face and over the web. This summer I specifically elevated my comfort level with public outreach. Having access to a Facebook page with over a 650,000 person weekly reach, a Twitter with nearly 50,000 followers and an Instagram account with over 14,300 followers – and being tasked to post on all of them frequently – is an easy way to get comfortable swiftly. This comfort level will serve me well in the future with any job I may have as I will have the confidence to go ahead and quickly preform important tasks efficiently. While there still is the necessary guidance, being an intern for FOX Sports Arizona really is an independent job as you assume your own role. This role is important and includes no busy work, as you have valuable things you need to complete to help the company succeed. While in the business world the totem pole has interns at the bottom, you will never feel that way here. Everyone treats you with respect and has their doors open to help you as they equally would with any other coworker. At FSAZ you don’t feel like an intern – you feel like you’re apart of the team.
An enjoyable benefit that this internship offers is that you are not always stuck in a cubicle. Being a partner with the best sports teams in town means you get the chance to get out of the office and be “at the stadium” quite a bit. The fact being that you can receive a paycheck for a day at the ballpark – no matter what you have to do – seems like theft to me. But be warned, you may have to face the temptation of the smell of the fresh popcorn quite frequently.
As a student and as a young professional there are two key things I have always been told to do; network and listen. Not only does being an intern here give you an incredible opportunity to network within FOX Sports Arizona with all the decorated and accomplished coordinators, directors, and even general manager, but for someone who is infatuated with sports and wants to be in the industry, it opens up other doors as well. FSAZ is the premier network with the best partners in all of Arizona. It’s really easy to understand, for sports driven people you simply just cannot beat that. The elite individuals within FSAZ take the time to get to know you too. I had the opportunity to go to lunch privately with multiple motivating and interesting upper management members while learning about their stories, their path, and their day-in-day-out lives. The valuable information and tips I’ve learned will continue to help me succeed in the future in my pursuit of working in the sports world.
To whoever comes next: Take advantage of the freedom at FSAZ. You are not limited to your department. Everyone in the office is approachable and willing to not only help you, but they are also excited to teach you and further your understatement in grasping all sides of the business. Also be sure to make the internship what you want it to be. If you are not able to come up with at least one big and memorable idea- you aren’t thinking enough. One day, I came into the office on “National Social Media Day”, yet there were no Arizona sports games scheduled for that day. I coined the idea to take a bobble-head of Paul Goldschmidt around downtown phoenix on a day out around the town to create a little buzz. I created a Snapchat story and it ended up being a hit with a considerable amount of views, and even made it on to our Facebook page. The lesson here is think outside of the box and do not be afraid to pitch your ideas. Even if your exact concept isn’t always used, it may help get the ball rolling for what is next to come.
I could elaborate for paragraphs and paragraphs about how much I enjoyed my summer working for FOX Sports Arizona. The people who work here truly make it a superior place to be. The opportunities not only presented to you as an intern, but also things expected from you serve as a prime example of first hand sports entertainment and business world instances at the professional level. This is something I will remember forever and am confident I will look back on with appreciation. It’s been an incredible experience to learn and grow and I truly believe after this summer I have gained a substantial amount of knowledge to confidently say I have bettered my future.
Anthony Studnicka – Summer 2016 Marketing and Communications Intern.