Royal Treatment

CAFNR students take it to the big leagues in KC for a professional sports career fair

Take me out to the ballgame, take me out to the crowd…of the most influential people in Missouri professional sports. Last month, CAFNR’s Parks, Recreation and Tourism, and Hospitality Management programs took a trip to Kansas City for a career fair with some of the biggest names from the Royals, Chiefs, T-Bones and Sporting KC.

IMG_3351The event was held at Kauffman Stadium and as the day unfolded, 19 Mizzou PRT and HM students rubbed elbows with the professionals to get meaningful insight about how best to get in the game.

The sport management program in the PRT department and the sport venue management program in the Hospitality Management department are two of the fastest growing programs at MU. The University of Missouri was the only university to send students to the event, granting Mizzou students an exclusive opportunity to make personal connections with some of their role models.

Danny Harre, sophomore sport management student, said he was most looking forward to meeting Ryan Smart, a customer relations representative for the Chiefs. For Harre, it’s the passion they saw in the organization executives that make working and interning for the Chiefs such a strong aspiration, he said.

Another PRT student was successful in getting two job interviews from of the trip. Brendan Borman, PRT senior, said the trip gave him the opportunity to meet face-to-face with people he had previously only been able to communicate with remotely. At the meet-and-greet, Borman took advantage of the face time and walked away with interviews for both the Royals and Farmers Mutual Insurance.

Borman recommended anyone who is offered an opportunity to attend this kind of event to take it.

“One tip I would give to anyone struggling to land interviews post-career fair is this: try to find a time that the person you are talking with doesn’t have to worry about a long line ofIMG_3346 people interested in talking about the same position. Picking your spots can be a great way to improve the conversation because neither party will be in a rush and can relax and speak professionally,” he said.

The group also got to talk with the Royals’ Marketing Director about how marketing strategies they learn at Mizzou translate to successful game-day programs like Mizzou Night, Gordo Nation and Buck Night.

“This experience with the PRT department was priceless. Not only did it give me a chance to build relationships and improve my career outlook, but it also gave me one final opportunity to spend time with a lot of my fellow classmates I have shared many classes with the past four years,” Borman said.

The trip was planned and executed by PRT advisors Jenna Fusinatto, Jason Young and Ragh Singh. In addition to the career fair, the group met for Q&As with the Royals and T-Bones and took a tour with the Chiefs. They ended their trip watching a Royals victory that afternoon at Kauffman Stadium.