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Sport marketing majors gain hands-on experience at top Indianapolis sport complexes

Sport marketing students pose at the Top Golf facility in Fishers

On Nov. 7, Professor Anna Stumpf led a field trip to Indianapolis for students in the sport marketing program. They visited the new Top Golf facility in Fishers, the Indianapolis Colts Complex, and Bankers Life Fieldhouse for a meeting with the Pacers organization, and a Pacers game. Stumpf and the students were joined for the Pacers visit and game by Trent Palmer, Director of Student Engagement, and students from his Management of Sport Facilities and Events class in the Sport & Recreational Leadership program.

At the Indianapolis Colts Complex, students met with sponsorship and media executives and were able to enter Jim Irsay's memorabilia room. The room required retinal scanners to enter, and they got to hold the Colts NFL Super Bowl trophy.

At Bankers Life Fieldhouse, Taylar Kelso, a 2017 AU graduate was able to address the group as a newly hired employee of Pacers Sports and Entertainment.

“The field trip was great because we got to meet people who are doing the jobs we will want to do when we graduate,” said Jourdan Blackburn, junior sport marketing major. “The speakers gave us practical advice on how to be successful in the sports field and I am already taking advantage of those tips!”

Executives at both organizations echoed that AU’s sport marketing major is supplying students with the coursework and programming they need to be successful in the industry.

“Probably the most engaged of any students I’ve spoken to in quite a while,” said Scott Higginson, Corporate Partnership Manager for the Indianapolis Colts, in an email to Stumpf.

Student kisses the Colts Lombardi trophy“This is why I take field trips,” said Stumpf, referring to Higginson’s reaction to the AU students. “Higginson went all out to make our experience worthwhile.”

“We want Anderson University students to experience the real world while they are still in college,” shares Dr. Terry Truitt, dean of the Falls School of Business. “Professor Stumpf gives our students direct-contact experiences with expert professionals in the sporting world. Not too many sport agents across the country have held a Lombardi trophy, but her students have.”

The trip is one of many hands-on learning experiences provided at Anderson University. Students in the sport marketing program are also hosting a Basketball Media Day today, Nov. 15, to help promote the upcoming men’s and women’s basketball seasons. You can follow their posts using the hashtag #RavenMediaDay.

The transportation for the trip was funded by IDEA-U, a Lilly grant project that works to encourage innovation in the Anderson University community through partnerships, professional development, and student-driven projects.

Anderson University is a private, liberal arts institution in Anderson, Indiana with a mission to educate students for lives of faith and service in the church and society. Anderson University is recognized among top colleges by U.S. News and World Report, Colleges of Distinction, and The Princeton Review. Established in 1917 by the Church of God, the university now offers more than 50 undergraduate majors and graduate programs in business, music education, and theology.

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