This year’s Super Bowl, between the San Francisco 49ers and Kansas City Chiefs, drew more than 75,000 fans to Miami’s Hard Rock Stadium on February 2, and was watched by more than 100 million fans at home.
The week leading up to the game was a series of events in itself, and helping to make sure those events went well was a team of 16 sport management and sport media majors from Ithaca College.
Those students, accompanied by Annemarie Farrell, associate professor and chair of the department of sport management, spent the days leading up to Super Bowl LIV by working tirelessly behind the scenes, not only helping events go off without a hitch, but seeing their classroom knowledge translate into real-life professional success.
Experiential learning opportunities are a key part of the college’s strategic plan, and professor Farrell’s classes prepare students to take advantage of them. But an event as big as the Super Bowl, teeming with A-listers and C-suite executives, required even more prep work. There was also an added element this year, because the students were not working as volunteers, but were paid by a pair of companies contracted to oversee stadium operations and for NFL House, a premier VIP experience for team owners, players, media influencers, and sponsors.