Trip to Bulls’ United Center Is Valuable Learning Opportunity
Friday, 09 May 2014
Business students from the Professor Kyle Harkema’s Personal Selling class got a behind-the-scenes look at the United Center on a recent field trip to Chicago. The interactive tour was hosted by Brandon Wright ’01, manager of ticket sales for the Chicago Bulls, and former Trinity communication arts and business student.
The trip included a tour through the Bulls locker room, board room, memorabilia room, and court. The class was excited to also catch a glimpse of Blackhawks Head Coach Joel Quenneville. To conclude the visit, the students interviewed Wright about his job.
“After listening to his presentation, it was clear that he was able to land this job because he was a talented individual who put forth a ton of work to get where he was,” said management major Jake Tiemersma ’14 of South Holland, Illinois. “Besides hoping to understand his story and what he did, I was obviously excited to be in the Bulls locker room and step onto the court, the typical tourist.”
Wright discussed the journey to his current position, and how Trinity helped him get there. “The courses I took at Trinity were the most beneficial for me, not only for preparing me for what I do in my role at the Bulls today, but also confirming that this was the career path I wanted to take.”
After graduating, Wright had to compete for full-time employment with 11 other graduates from large universities, including schools from the Big 10, SEC, and Big 12. “It made me proud knowing that you don’t have to graduate from the biggest school in order to work in this industry, and I know I wouldn’t be where I am today without the education and experiences I had during my time at Trinity,” he said.
Students were grateful for the experience. “Trips like these provide students with great opportunities to network with and to learn from alumni,” said management major Kristin Alons ’15 of Pungo, North Carolina. “It was easy to engage with Brandon since he once was one of us.”
“Trips like this are important to not only get a cool opportunity to visit somewhere like the United Center but also learn more about people who graduated from Trinity and were in the same major as you,” said business communications major Victoria Drenth ’15 of Palos Heights, Illinois. “It gives you more confidence finding a job after graduation.”
Harkema, assistant professor of business, recognizes the importance of seizing learning opportunities outside of the classroom.
“The business department makes it a priority to engage Chicago in as many ways possible,” he said. “This is what truly makes the business department an exciting place to learn.”