By: Adam White, @FOSAdam
Front Office Sports is proud to have sat down with Jimmy Neice, sophomore at West Virginia University and SportsManias Campus Representative. Besides being actively involved with SportsManias, Jimmy is also balancing a full course load as well as commitments to his fraternity and marketing club. He was gracious enough to give us a look into what a 21st century sports business student is doing to prepare himself for life after college and how SportsManias has helped further his career development.
As a sophomore at West Virginia, you have been at school now for almost two years. What is one key thing that you have taken away from your classroom experience and your practical experience?
The biggest thing I’ve learned so far is that balance is key. There is a lot happening in college, ranging from classwork to social life to other activities. To succeed in college, you need to find the right balance for everything. There’s a lot of great experiences to experience while in college, and you shouldn’t miss out on a lot of them by always studying. On the other hand, you don’t want to do too little studying as your main objective for school is to get your degree. Finding the right balance will ensure a successful and memorable college experience.
You are currently involved with the multiple student organizations on campus and have commitments outside of school. What are your tips for balancing your school and your other commitments?
I would say that making a schedule for yourself is pretty helpful. It helps me organize what things I want to do at what times, making my day a little easier. Also prioritizing your events is pretty important. Get the more important stuff done first, before moving onto the smaller stuff that’s less impactful.
Why a career in sports? Where do you see yourself in five years?
Sports have always been a passion of mine. Growing up that’s all I ever paid attention to, and part of that is due to living in Pittsburgh. It is a blessing to be able to grow up in a city that hosts some of the best teams in the nation. I grew inspiration from all the Pittsburgh teams, especially the Steelers and Pirates. Every morning before school, I would turn on SportsCenter to see everything happening in sports. With all that being said, I knew that I wanted to make my career in sports. In five years, I imagine myself working for some type of company related to sports, whether it be sporting goods or for a professional sports team. I see myself working on the marketing team for the company I am a part of.
Can you talk about your experience with SportsManias? Why is a campus representatives [rep] program like this so valuable for students to gain experience in the industry?
SportsManias has been a great and rewarding experience for me so far. It has allowed me to dip into the marketing field for the first time outside of the classroom. I have gained a lot of valuable tips and experience through the campus rep program that I know I can take advantage of later on in my career. Additionally, it has pushed me to find new and innovative ways to market the app to people around campus. Campus rep positions are great for aspiring marketing students like myself, because it gives you a great firsthand experience of what the marketing field is all about. You really gain some valuable experience from the program, experience that you just can’t get from the classroom. I would definitely recommend a campus rep position to any student interested in getting into marketing.
What advice would you give fellow students and young professionals currently pursuing jobs and/or internships in sports management?
The best advice I could give, is that you should never give up on something that you are passionate about. Just because you don’t get the dream job/internship you want right from the start, doesn’t mean you should give up. Instead, analyze what you did, find ways that you can improve some of your weaknesses, and go for it.