By Rei Ramos ’15
Baseball is more than just a simple hobby for Ethan Sander ’14. Starting early with an organized t-ball league at the age of five, his involvement with the sport has continued even into his college years. Now, after scoring a marketing internship with the local Rochester Red Wings, the rising senior has the opportunity to experience his favorite sport on a completely different playing field.
For the last three years, he has served as a heavy hitter on the University’s varsity baseball team. A business major with a marketing focus, Sander was lucky to have found an internship that catered to two of his very different interests, granting a glimpse of the commercial side of baseball. This summer, he will be taking a break from stealing bases on the field and will instead try his hand at selling out the stadium seats, among other duties. Throwing promotions instead of pitches, he works as an intern with the Red Wings’ marketing and sales department, formulating strategies to sell group tickets and ticket packages to the stadium suites and also personally coordinating with minor league athletes during mascot and player appearances for the public.
”I hope to work in baseball for a career and I think interning for the Red Wings is a great start and learning experience for that. The sales aspect of my job is beneficial as I have never really done that before, and that is a very important part of working in the front office of a baseball team,” says Sander. Stepping out of his usual role as an athlete, he is gaining a different experience from this internship by switching his focus from playing the game to selling it through measures like ticket promotions and fan giveaways. According to him, the position has introduced him to the importance of “fan interaction, especially when selecting and explaining to contestants how promotions are run.”
Moving from the dugout to the office for the summer term, Sander has been offered a unique and valuable perspective on baseball. Involving many of the topics and subjects that he has encountered in his business and marketing classes, this internship has served as a beneficial experiential supplement to his field of study. That’s not to say that working in the less hands-on sector of the sport has dulled his interest. ”Being around baseball and a good group makes everything a lot more enjoyable,” says Sander.
While the rising senior is currently unsure whether his post-grad plans involve the pursuit of a playing career, he foresees a continued involvement in athletics in his future. Sanders says, “I would like to work in sports, especially baseball after graduation but we will have to see what opportunities present themselves.”
This story is part of the Summer Plans Series, a collection of stories about how undergrads at the University of Rochester are spending their summer. Know of someone doing something cool over break? Email The Buzz (firstname.lastname@example.org) and tell us all about it!